Given the amount of time Broadway actors spend at work, it’s no surprise that they enjoy a good joke—often at a co-worker’s expense! In celebration of April Fool’s Day, Broadway.com asked some of our favorite stars to share their funniest work-related pranks. In some cases, the stars initiated the practical joke; in others, the joke was on them. Read on for true tales of behind-the-scenes tomfoolery.
GREGORY JBARA (Dad in Billy Elliot)
“Curiously, the only show-related pranks that come to mind were in my youth during the 1994 revival of Damn Yankees, my first Broadway musical. There was a scene where my character, the catcher, tosses his bath towel and is caught naked in the locker room by Gloria, the reporter. In a hasty attempt to cover myself I grab the nearest wooden bench and use it to shield my privates. Once the gag is over, another character hands me a large bath towel that allows me to put down the bench and properly cover myself. One performance he thought it would be funny to hand me a washcloth instead of a large towel. That happened only ONE performance. Then during my last performance, in preparation for that towel scene, I had to surrender my body mic (to be completely nude for the upcoming gag). Well, when I turned to exit the sound room the doorway was blocked by several members of our stunning women's ensemble in significantly less clothing than I had ever seen them in. Their 'hands on' mission was to 'increase my heart rate' before I walked on stage naked. That all-too-fleeting 30 seconds (not nearly enough time for them to achieve their goal) will be forever burned into my memory as one of the best farewell gifts ever!”