Krysta Rodriguez: “A very strong theme in my life has been ‘Setback First, Success Second.’ I usually don’t get in the first time”

krysta-rodriguez-zachary-levi-first-dateKrysta Rodriguez might have gotten famous more recently because of her role on Smash, but she’s no Broadway novice.  She has been appearing on Broadway for a decade after debuting at age 19 in Good Vibrations.  She’s since appeared in A Chorus Line, Spring Awakening, In the Heights, and The Addams Family, mostly in the ensemble or in understudy roles. 

However, she finally gets the whole spotlight in First Date, a new Broadway musical in which she stars opposite Zachary Levi.  She spoke to The Huffington Post about her career, most notably on her setbacks including the cancellation of Smash.

Regarding her years of often playing second-fiddle to bigger names, Krystra explains, “A very strong theme in my life has been ‘Setback First, Success Second.’ I usually don’t get in the first time. So I try again and I get in the second time.  It’s made me who I am. I know that I’m more appreciative of every experience I have because of all those things.”

As for Smash — which Rodriguez joined in the second season — she believes the show failed in trying to please those who would never have been pleased with a show about the behind-the-scenes of Broadway.  She says, “We kind of didn’t stand a chance. We were trying to please a group of people who didn’t want to be pleased. They had already made up their minds.  In its afterlife, it’s so well received. But when we were doing it, we were in the crossfires of everybody’s anger.”

Of course, there’s a bit of teasing animosity with her First Date co-star Levi because he had more television success with Chuck.  With a laugh she points out that his dressing room is much bigger and says, “He was on five years of television.  I was only on one.”

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