As kids all over America head back to school, Broadway.com decided to ask our favorite Broadway stars to look back at their own years in the classroom—and share a school picture! Today, Cinderella standout and Smash vet Ann Harada showcases her signature brand of humor as she recalls an embarrassing gym class, her early work as a playwright and more.
Who was your favorite teacher and why?
My favorite teacher was Mrs. Godbold in fifth grade. She encouraged my attempts at satiric playwriting. I wrote an updated version of the Greek myth of Perseus. It was hilarious...if you were in fifth grade.
What advice would you give to your school-age self?
Don't worry so much about fitting in.
In school you would have been named “most likely to…” ?
Sing an obscure Stephen Sondheim song in Chapel. :)
What’s your favorite back-to-school item?
I loved all my early lunchboxes. If only I had realized they were all going to be collector's items! I had a Barbie one and a Beatles one that are actually quite valuable now. D'oh!
What class did you dread and why?
Phys Ed, because I was so uncoordinated, until we got to high school and got to make up our own gymnastic routines, at which point I helped choreograph a floor exercise to "MacArthur Park" and sang it while my team executed it. We got an A.
What is your most embarrassing school moment?
You don't think singing "MacArthur Park" a cappella in gym class is embarrassing enough?
In which extracurricular activities did you participate?
I took tennis class after school for four years, then I discovered drama club. I also remember competing in something where you'd go to another high school and compete by taking tests? Quiz Bowl? Is that what it was called?
Describe your school-age self in three words.
Awkward. Nerdy. Enthusiastic.