On Smash Megan Hilty may star as Ivy Lynn, the lead actress immersed in a biomusical about iconic blonde Marilyn Monroe, but the Wicked and 9 to 5 vet recently found herself all-consumed with a famous fiery redhead: Bernadette Peters. The two-time Tony winner guest stars as Leigh Conroy, the mother of Hilty’s character, on the March 19 episode of the NBC musical drama. Hilty recently dropped by Broadway.com’s Show People with Paul Wontorek, where she discussed her 'pinch me' moments while working with the Broadway legend.
“Bernadette Peters playing my mom? I mean how many dreams can come true with one job? It’s unbelievable,” Hilty said. “She’s really the reason I wanted to go into musical theater in the first place. So to have her, of all people, play my mother... I’m still trying to deal with it.”
Hilty, who will soon return to the stage as another infamous blonde in the Encores! production of Gentlemen Prefer Blondes, oozes confidence on-screen when channeling Marilyn, but behind-the-scenes the actress revealed Peters had her quaking in her stilettos.
“I was such a goober when she came on set,” Hilty said with a laugh, noting her nervousness around the star. “I’ve been there for months. It’s like my home, but when Bernadette came on set it was almost like I didn’t know where to put my hands.”
Nerves aside, Hilty is grateful to have worked with one of her life-long inspirations. “She was so lovely,” Hilty added. “She’s so gentle and supportive and she gives such an incredible performance on the show. I can’t wait for everybody to see it.”
Be sure to watch Hilty's full Show People interview on Broadway.com when it premieres March 8.