“Matilda the Musical” actor on playing Miss Trunchbull

Time Magazine’s No. 1 show of the year, “Matilda The Musical,” is coming to a South Florida stage near you. The Broward Center for the Performing Arts will host the show, which is about a young genius child surrounded by dysfunctional people, from April 25 through May 7. The musical features all of the characters that “Matilda” fans know and love – or love to hate – like Matilda, Miss Honey, Miss Trunchbull, Mr. and Mrs. Wormwood and Mrs. Phelps.

Dan Chameroy, a two-time Canadian Screen Award nominee and founding artist of Theatre 20, plays Miss Trunchbull. Chameroy has made appearances on “Reign,” and his voice is featured on “Hotel Transylvania” and “Ranger Rob.”  Chameroy has taken on the role of the principal and tyrant Miss Trunchbull in the book-turned-musical.

“[Matilda is] a story of hope,” Chameroy explained. “It has some humor and also this great darkness to the play, and there is music and movement, so it’s really a great piece of theatre. It really honors the book… I think the movie sort of takes some of the darkness out of the piece, so this show certainly has more of a Tim Burton-esque or Harry Potter feel to it than the movie does.”

Chameroy explained that the part of Miss Trunchbull is a very demanding one, both physically and vocally, so the most difficult part of performing is making sure he is taking care of himself and resting on the road when possible.

“When my character is on stage, she’s very explosive. She does a lot of loud speaking – well some would call it yelling. Physically, she is very in command. She throws people, and she jumps around and she dances. You have to be in pretty good physical shape to do this role because of the eight shows a week with little time to recuperate because you are traveling on your days off,” Chameroy said. “I have to maintain my physical health and make sure that vocally I am not damaging my voice. The role is so well-written that you sort of let the words work for you. Luckily, I have such a strong script to rely on. For me, the physical and vocal parts are the most challenging.”

Chameroy went on to explain why he loves playing Miss Trunchbull.

“Playing this part is a real treat. She’s so enjoyable to play. Being able to tell the story is great as well,” Chameroy said. “It’s always wonderful when you can do a show that you’re proud of instead of a show because you are making a salary. I get the best of both worlds in Matilda.”

Chameroy said people of all ages can relate to the story.

“The story is dark. It’s not really fluffy and light… You don’t leave the show necessarily humming any of the tunes, and it’s not your typical musical. Tim Minchin is a very funny man. He’s a comedian and a great artist. He wrote the music and the lyrics. Matilda is a piece of literature, and the show really honored that by keeping the language as a main focus. It is about a child’s journey, [but] it’s a dark piece. People come thinking that it’s a kid show, but it’s not,” Chameroy said. “… Roald Dahl really celebrates both the darkness and the lightness in life. He’s not really sugarcoating anything. This show is for everyone, and it will appeal to everyone. If you know the book, you’ll be pleased with the performance.”

For more information on show times and how to purchase tickets, visit broward.centerfortlauderdale.com.

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