Michael Xavier has Tea With Wilma
Can you tell me about some of your career highlights for anyone who may not be familiar with you work?
I’ve been in a variety of Musicals from The Phantom of the Opera and Miss Saigon to Spamalot and Oklahoma. I was nominated for 2 Olivier Awards in 2011 for Love Story (Duchess Theatre) and Into The Woods (Open Air Theatre).
Tell me about the story of The Pajama Game and what attracted you to the role you are playing.
The character of Sid arrives to a new town to work at as a superintendent of a pyjama factory (spelled pajama in the USA) at a time when the union are threatening industrial action over a 7 and a half cent raise. Babe (played by the fabulous Joanna Riding) is the head of the union and Sid and Babe fall for each other. However, their professional positions conflict this relationship. How will they work it out? The role is great because he starts as an outsider and not only wins the factory workers over but helps them to achieve what they need. He overcomes his personal issues of stubbornness and anger to become a pretty cool guy.
Have you ever had any funny/disastrous on-stage experiences?
Yes, Whilst unzipping Babe’s dress I got the zip stuck and Joanna had to rip her way out of the costume in front of a highly amused audience that night!
If you were going to name a pet after a musical theatre character, what would you choose?
That would be considered incredibly stagey Wilma! It would depend on the animal but if you’re going to twist my arm for an answer I’d name my pet ‘Boosey’ after a character that Colonel Pickering speaks to on the phone in My Fair Lady. The brilliant Stephen Moore played the role when I was playing Freddy. His delivery of that name always made me chuckle. It was one of my first shows and an incredible experience!
Have you ever owned any interesting pyjamas that maybe the Sleep Tite factory should add to their production line?
Nope! And I DON’T DO ONESIES! I don’t own a pair of pyjamas. I’m willing to try though if someone was to buy me a lovely pair…?
If you could only ever listen to one more musical theatre song, what would you choose?
That’s a HARD question! I’ll go with ‘You’ll Never Walk Alone’. I like the positivity of the sentiment and it’s a cracking tune. Plus I support Liverpool FC!
Have you ever had any interesting hobbies like stamp collecting?
I used to paint tiny figurines when I was a kid. I miss doing that. It was very therapeutic.
Why should people come and see The Pajama Game?
It’s fast, fun and fantastic! The company are not only wonderful actors but they can sing and dance SUPERBLY too! The choreography is insane, the direction from Sir Richard Eyre is fabulous and the musical arrangements by Gareth Valentine are electric! Come and see it!!!
Thanks for having Tea With Wilma