MAPLEWOOD, NJ - Grady McLeod Bowman of Maplewood is a featured performer in the new Paper Mill Playhouse production of “South Pacific.” He is no newcomer to the show, having also performed in the 2008 revival at Lincoln Center and in the national touring company.
“In fact, I met my wife in the touring company of South Pacific,” Bowman said. The two settled in Maplewood because they had friends there and knew there was a strong theater community. They feel right at home, he noted.
The 32-year old actor/dancer/choreographer is a member of the ensemble in the new production and is also the dance captain. He is also a Paper Mill veteran, having been in the theater’s productions of “Honeymoon in Vegas” and “Damn Yankees.”
The North Carolina native has been acting and dancing his whole life.
“My first experience onstage was at five years old,” he said. Growing up, he performed on television and in movies, and eventually went to college for dance. He has done a great deal of choreography and is the Assistant Artistic Director of the Mark Stuart Dance Company.
Up next for the busy performer is the dance musical, “Standard Time,” in May in Wilkes Barre, Pennsylvania. Then comes overseeing the choreography for the first national touring company of the smash musical, “Once.” He may also be tapped for the Broadway premier of “Honeymoon in Vegas.”
For now though, it’s the classic Rodgers and Hammerstein musical “South Pacific.” With music by Richard Rodgers and lyrics by Oscar Hammerstein II, the show is adapted from the Pulitzer Prize-winning novel Tales of the South Pacific by James A. Michener, and features iconic songs like "Some Enchanted Evening," "Younger Than Springtime," and "There Is Nothing Like a Dame.”
“South Pacific” will play the Millburn theater from April 9 through May 4, with performances Wednesdays at 7:30 p.m., Thursdays at 1:30 p.m. and 7:30 p.m., Fridays at 8 p.m., Saturdays at 1:30 p.m. and 8 p.m. and Sundays at 1:30 p.m. and 7 p.m. Tickets are on sale now and may be purchased by calling 973.376.4343, at the Paper Mill Playhouse Box Office at 22 Brookside Drive in Millburn, or online at www.papermill.org.