Where’d These Glee Kids Come From?
“Glee” is on hiatus, and I am going through withdrawals. This totally unlikely hit, and favorite show of mine, is the black sheep of network prime time TV, not unlike the glee club portrayed on the show. There’s no laugh track, but it’s hilarious. It’s not truly a “drama” and, yet, I’ve shed tears. Top that all off with a healthy dose of brilliant — if slightly cringe inducing — musical performances that have had me peeking through my covered eyes while I watch a grown white guy singing and dancing to Sisqo’s “Thong Song.” Yikes. Still, I’m overjoyed that “Glee” is getting the recognition it deserves through the string of Golden Globe nominations it has just received.
Absence may make the heart grow fonder, but it also leads to desperate Google searches for anything I can find about the show. I’ve wondered since watching the first episode where the leads came from, what their musical backgrounds are, and why they haven’t been on Broadway before, or even the less prestigious “American Idol.” If you’re the same, you might be surprised at what I found:
Lea Michele, “Rachel”: Michele, 24, has been performing on Broadway since she was nine years old. She has even won a Grammy for Best Musical Show Album for “Spring Awakening” and is now nominated for a Golden Globe for Best Actress in a Comedy or Musical TV Series. She’s known Jenna Ushkowitz, who plays “Tina” on the show, since she was eight.
Cory Monteith, “Finn”: Cory, 27, hails from Vancouver, Canada, and has pursued acting since he dropped out of high school in ninth grade. He held a variety of jobs, from Walmart greeter to telemarketer, before he landed his first small TV role on “Stargate: Alantis” in 2004.
Matthew Morrison, “Will Schuester”: Matt, 31, has performed on Broadway since 1999, starring in such shows as “Footloose” and “Hairspray.” He briefly appeared on “As The World Turns” before landing his current role on “Glee.” He has a Grammy on his shelf for Best Musical Show Album for Hairspray, and now been nominated for a Golden Globe for Best Actor in a Comedy or Musical TV Series.
Jayma Mays, “Emma Pillsbury”: Jayma, 30, has played various TV roles on shows such as “Entourage,” “How I Met Your Mother,” “House,” “The Ghost Whisperer” and the ill-fated “Pushing Daisies,” as well as having a starring role in the Kevin James’ movie “Paul Blart: Mall Cop.” She is married to English actor Adam Campbell.
“Glee,” also nominated for a Golden Globe for Best Comedy or Musical TV Series, returns for the rest of its first season on April 13, 2010. It’s going to be a long winter.