As the eponymous gentleman of hit Broadway musical A Gentleman’s Guide to Love and Murder, Bryce Pinkham navigates on a regular basis the fine line between lover and murderer. And he’s no stranger to the dark side; he once played villain Carl Bruner in Ghost the Musical. But can one truly play the role of the gentleman and still slaughter his way to the top? Pinkham spills his secrets—but thankfully, no blood was split for this interview.
By Caroline A. Wong
Tastevin Magazine: As lead character Monty Navarro, you have a pretty exciting role as a lead star on Broadway. Tell us about it.
Bryce Pinkham: He begins the story a lower middle-class orphan in Edwardian England, the classic Dickensian underdog. [But soon] Monty finds himself in the line of succession of a great title and a vast fortune. The only thing that stands in his way are eight relatives of the D’ysquith family, each more despicable and pesky than the next. Monty decides to alter the course of his destiny and [to] dispatch of the D’ysquiths that stand in his way of inheriting the Earldom. Aside from learning how to become a serial killer—all while singing and dancing, mind you—Monty finds himself learning how to navigate the equally treacherous waters of romance. In one scene Monty finds himself having to choose between the woman he has always loved but who will never marry him and the one who would make the perfect wife but who doesn’t know the truth about his past. All that is to say, this gentleman stays very busy!
TM: Are you anything like your character?
BP: I don’t think there’s an actor on the planet that can’t attach to the idea of being the underdog. I think in order to persevere in show business you have to sort of get off on people turning you down or telling you that you can’t do something. You have to find a way to make it fuel you, rather than destroy you. Monty has been told that he is not welcome in the aristocracy, that he doesn’t belong. Rather than just accept his fate, he lets it fuel his quest to become a gentleman. There are lyrics that are sung about Monty that could easily have been sung about me being cast in this role: “Monty Navarro, how have you come so very far? Monty Navarro, earnest and circumspect! Monty Navarro, no one knows who you really are, who would ever suspect!”
TM: But how can someone simultaneously be a murderer and a gentleman?
BP: Yeah, I don’t think that’s possible in real life, is it? However, in a Broadway musical, one can simultaneously be a murderer and a gentleman by hitting all the notes—and by not spilling any blood on his coat tails.