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Multi-talented performer Sam Harris joins host Robin Milling for a backstage chat about his one-man musical, 'Ham: A Musical Memoir,' now playing at Theater 511 at Ars Nova in New York City. Directed by Billy Porter, featuring pianist Todd Schroeder, the show is based on his autobiography, 'Ham: Slices of A Life.'
On stage Sam expertly tells stories, speaking about his life's journey from boyhood to the present; whether in song or candid monologues. He tells Robin he's embraced the term, 'ham,' recalling his earliest performance at three singing The Star Spangled Banner at a football game in Sand Springs, Oklahoma. Sam says performing is everything to him. 'It was my coping mechanism being a little bit of a different kind of kid growing up in rural, Baptist South; the buckle of the bible belt! For a burgeoning gay showbusiness kid it was a little freaky especially being born in the early 60s.'
And for those not born in the 60s, Star Search was the American Idol of it's day, where Sam won the 1983 grand champion singer with his rousing rendition of 'Over The Rainbow.' He tells Robin he accepts the legacy, along with his other accomplishments as an actor, a writer, and a recording aritst.
Sam talks about the cathartic experience he feels exorcising his demons on stage, although some things were left in the book such as his alcoholism; celebrating 11 years sober. Even though the show is personal to his life experience, he tells Robin it's universal. 'I don't think there's anybody who doesn't feel outside. I don't think there's anybody who doesn't need to be told 'you're enough.''
For more about Sam visit http://www.samharris.com/
To celebrate the holidays, Milling About joins the cast of Elf, now playing at The Papermill Playhouse. Based on the film, it's a musical about Buddy, an oprhan who was left on Santa's doorstep in the North Pole and raised by elves. All grown up, he returns to earth to discover his true identity; and in the process learns much more about love and family.
Host Robin Milling asks James Moye (Buddy), Heidi Blickenstaff (Emily Hobbs), Robert Cuccioli (Walter Hobbs), Jake Faragalli (Michael), Kate Fahrner (Jovie), Paul C. Vogt (Santa) and Matthew Sklar (Composer) about five things they couldn't live without if they traveled from earth to the North Pole and their fondest Christmas memories.
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