With lead roles in Hairspray and the wildly popular High School Musical franchise, Zac Efron is well-known in Hollywood as a song-and-dance man, but the 24-year-old actor has yet to conquer the Broadway stage. In an interview with The Advocate, Efron revealed his Broadway aspirations—and why he’s grateful to be embraced by the gay community.
“Without a doubt, I’d love to do Broadway,” said Efron. “I actually can’t wait to get back to musical theater. There’s a part of me that wishes I could go do it right now, but there’s also a part of me that knows I need to tackle other types of acting opportunities first. I want to be a well-rounded, versatile performer. Until I master other things, it would be hard for me to get back to musical theater. But that will always be my home base and where I feel the most free, and it’s something I will definitely do again, even if it’s just for pleasure and personal fulfillment.”
Efron recalled his first experience in the theater at age 12, where he looked up to the older college kids as role models. “I started doing local theater so young…so to me, being gay was just another way that you can be,” said Efron of his fellow performers. “I might’ve been less aware of it back then, but without question I had gay role models.”
Efron also discussed his “flattering” connection to the gay community, which holds a distinctive place in his heart. “After High School Musical and Hairspray, I’ve always felt embraced by the gay community, and I feel incredibly grateful and honored,” he said, adding that he looks forward to the challenge of playing a gay character somewhere down the line. “I’d never take a role just for the sake of playing gay, but I’m always looking for a role that’s challenging, different and entails some risk, so there’s no doubt in my mind that one of those characters will be gay at some point in the future. It’s always interesting to delve into unexplored territory, and that would be a new avenue for me. I definitely wouldn’t be afraid.”