|Born||Laura Ann Osnes
November 19, 1985 
Burnsville, Minnesota, United States
|Spouse(s)||Nathan Johnson (May 11, 2007-present)|
I've always wanted to be on an original cast recording. I grew up listening to them, and now to know that my voice is heard on three or four of them is just surreal. I never thought I would be that person.
Cinderella is making her Broadway debut. It's an honor to step into that position and, in that way, I am creating a role because it's never been done on Broadway. I feel so honored.
Getting to do 'December Songs' in a cabaret-style format was so interesting because it's like a one-woman song cycle that actually tells a story. It feels like a theatrical experience more than a cabaret because I didn't talk in between. We went from one song to the next, nine songs in a row – bam – I told the story in half an hour.
I was never like, 'Oh, I really want to play Cinderella.' That's not necessarily always been the dream. But it's super fun to play a princess.
I did my first show in second grade. I was a munchkin in 'The Wizard of Oz.'
I'm doing what I wanted to do since I was a young girl. I pinch myself every day to make sure it's true.
'Bonnie and Clyde' was the first show and the first role that I got to originate. Being part of that from the ground up and investing three years of my life into seeing that show come to Broadway was really rigorous but also so exciting.
'Grease' was my Broadway debut. That was eye-opening. At the same time, it was very familiar. It was a Broadway show, but it's kind of the same as doing a show in Minnesota. It's the same type of rehearsal process. You are doing 8 shows a week, but I worked at a theatre in Minnesota that did 11 shows a week.
When I did 'Grease,' I took good care of myself. I treated it like a job. I approached it very professionally because I wanted to make a good reputation and hopefully continue on in the Broadway community and continue to do shows.
I'd love to do movies and be on TV. But I think if I transitioned into TV/film completely, I would really miss singing and dancing. It would be ideal to be cast in a movie musical!
I was born in Burnsville, Minnesota, and raised in Eagan, which is right by Burnsville. I've been in that area my whole life.
I let the whole 'Grease' experience be a springboard for me. I wanted to use the exposure I got from that very wisely to continue a successful career. It's taken a lot of work and perseverance.
'South Pacific' – I really learned a lot. I swear I like to say that during 'South Pacific,' I went from being a girl to being a woman.
My first Broadway show wasn't until I was a freshman in high school. It was my first trip to New York. I came with a group of theatre kids, and we saw four shows. The very first one was 'Contact.'
I think knowing where you can generally fit is important, but the fun thing about being an actor is sometimes stretching beyond that stereotype and stretching beyond the box that people put you in.
Julie Andrews is so iconic, and I grew up watching 'The Sound of Music' – it's every girl's dream to play Maria, in a way, I think. That music!
I don't think I want to transition into being a recording artist for the rest of my life or anything like that, but it's something I'd like to try.
I was always a very good student, 3.98 GPA… But once I found out I only had to take math and science for two years, I didn't take them junior or senior year. And I convinced my high school to give me actual credits for doing professional shows in Minneapolis… as work-study.
I don't have a gym membership. I usually do a bit of basic yoga or stretches at home or in my dressing room before the show. I've done plank for 60 seconds almost every day since 2009, when I had to wear a bikini onstage in 'South Pacific.'
That's the joy of getting to be an actor – getting to play all kinds of different roles and showing so many different sides of yourself.
I'm actually so low maintenance when it comes to my hair. It's naturally stick-straight, but I do like to use a curling iron to give my locks some life.
Getting to perform at the Carlyle, following in the footsteps of women like Elaine Stritch, Barbara Cook, Christine Ebersole, Kelli O'Hara, and so many others, is nothing short of a dream come true.
I have to say that getting to tackle Maria in 'The Sound of Music' at Carnegie Hall was surreal. When I heard my voice, it was all I could do to keep myself from doing a British accent and sound like Julie Andrews!
If you can be a good example to other people, why not try to be that person? I have a bit of a people pleaser in me, but not so much so that it's out of control.
I don't think auditioning will ever faze me again after the 'Grease' TV experience. It was fierce. There were thousands of people auditioning in four cities. I flew from home in Minneapolis to audition in L.A. I waited in line all day. I arrived at 7 A.M. and wasn't seen until 6 P.M.
After high school, I went to the University of Wisconsin Stevens Point for a year, and I studied musical theatre. By that point, I was like, 'This is what I want to do.'
I found an agent midway through my year-long run at 'Grease' and just started to audition. I fortunately booked 'South Pacific' six months after 'Grease' was over, and I feel like that was a huge turning point in legitimizing myself in the Broadway community, and getting to do that was absolutely amazing.
I've never dyed my hair or even gotten highlights. All the products I need for my hair are at the drugstore!