After a two-show day, Broadway’s pet-owning performers love nothing more than coming home to their number one fan: a loyal four-legged friend. In honor of the annual Broadway Barks dog and cat adoption event, coming up on July 9 in Shubert Alley, we asked stage stars to show their puppy—and kitty!—love by telling us all about their furry pals.
HUGH PANARO (The Phantom in The Phantom of the Opera)
What is your pet’s name and breed?
My dog's name is Soot, and he is a seven-year-old Labradoodle. His mother was a chocolate labrador retriever and his father was an apricot standard poodle.
How did your pet get its name?
Well, because he's black, he was going to be either Coal or Soot. But on his first night home, he went into the fireplace (yes, the fire had already gone out!) and picked up a piece of charred wood that he was proudly carrying around. When I took the burnt wood out of his mouth, my hand was covered in soot, so I think HE had decided on his name!
What is your pet’s favorite pastime?
He LOVES to swim. In the summertime, you can't keep him out of the water! One of my favorite memories is our first time swimming in the ocean with him. He loved the salt water.
Does your pet know any tricks?
He's not really into “one night stands.” Ha!
What’s the funniest thing your pet has done?
Soot's very vocal. He always seems to want the last "word,” but ever since he was a puppy, he does this thing I call the Sonic Yawn. Every morning he wakes up, opens his mouth, throws his head back and lets out a VERY high-pitched yawn that starts out soooo high it’s almost inaudible, and then he just kind of looks at you like "Good morning!" It still makes me laugh every time!
What’s the naughtiest thing your pet has done?
OMG— he is a cheese thief! He has stolen HUGE amounts of cheese, numerous times, off of coffee tables during parties, from high countertops that you would think he couldn't reach, out of people's hands (mostly unsuspecting small children's) when they weren't looking…you name it! Apparently, Soot feels the same way about cheese that I do about dark chocolate.
Do you look like your pet?
Actually, I've been told more than once that we look alike (not in the Phantom makeup, of course) and I REALLY hope it's true, because I think it's the best compliment anyone could give me!
Keep checking back for more pet profiles from your favorite stars.