Lindsay Mendez is an actress and singer who was born in Norwalk, California, on March 1, 1983. She is best known for her work musical theater, and she has played roles including Carrie Pipperidge in a Broadway revival of ‘Carousel’ and Elphaba in ‘Wicked’. She has now made the move into television work and is playing the role of Sara Costillo in the new courtroom drama ‘All Rise’. Although her profile is rising, there is plenty that people do not know about this performer. Here are 10 interesting facts about Lindsay Mendez.
1. Her First Character Was Gretl in ‘The Sound of Music’
Hen Lindsay Mendez was little, she saw her sister performing in ‘Annie’. Mendez wanted to get up on the stage herself, so her parents agreed that she could take some classes. She eventually made it onto the stage playing the role of Gretl in ‘The Sound of Music’. She has said that she was the smallest child at the Santa Fe Springs Community Playhouse. Mendez also notes that after this, she wasn’t in another Rodgers and Hammerstein until she became an adult and starred as Carrie Pipperidge in Carousel.
2. Musicals and Jazz Music Inspired Her to Become a Singer
According to an interview with Theater Mania, Lindsay Mendez was inspired to become a singer through a combination of watching musicals as a child and the love she developed for jazz music as she became an adult. Some of her favorite jazz artists include Nina Simone, Ella Fitzgerald, and Carmen McRae.
3. She Is Friends with Former Elphaba Performers
One of the most significant roles that Lindsay Mendez has performed is Elphaba in ‘Wicked’. When she first took on the role, during the 10 year anniversary of the musical, she sought the advice of former Elphaba performer Stephanie Block, who told her it would get harder and not easier. She is now good friends with Block, and with other performers who have played this role, including Julia Marney and Idina Menzel, the latter of whom was the original person to perform this role.
4. She Refused to Change Her Surname
When Lindsay Mendez first moved to New York to pursue her career, she was advised to change her name from Mende to Matthews, says Forbes. There are not many Latina actresses that have become successful in musical theater, so it was suggested that she should choose a less Latin sounding name. She refused to do this because she believed it would upset her grandparents too much. Despite her Latin name and heritage, Mende has gone on to become one of the most successful actresses on Broadway.
5. She Has Created a Program Called Actor Therapy
Mendez has co-created a program called Actor Therapy, which aims to support emerging actors and to help them develop confidence. Mendez says that it is important that they can identify their brand to become successful, and this is something that the program helps them to achieve. Mendez is passionate about this because of her own experiences. She said that she might have gone to college and studied the performing arts, but nothing prepares you for moving to New York and trying to become a Broadway star.
6. She is the 6th Latina Actress to Win a Tony Award
In the history of the Tony Awards, Lindsay Mendez is only the 6th Latina actress to ever win this award, says We Are Mitu. The previous Latina women who have won this award include Rita Moreno, Chita Rivera, Priscilla Lopez, Sara Ramirez, and Karen Olivo.
7. She is a Vlogger
In addition to appearing in musicals, Lindsay Mendez also contributes to a vlog for Broadway.com. She is one of several Broadway stars who contribute to this vlog, which features videos of the lives of those who appear in musicals. She filmed most of these vlogs while she was performing in ‘Wicked’.
8. She Had a Two-Phase Wedding
Mendez in married to jazz musician Philip Wakefield. She met the Kansas based drummer when she performed in a new musical in Kansas City. When they married in May 2019, they had a two part wedding, They had one in Kansas City, and another in New York City. The wedding in Kansas City was first, and this was a family affair as Wakefield’s family are from this city and it was easier for Lindsay’s Los Angeles based family travel to than New York. The second event was for the benefit of all their friends and colleagues in New York.
9. She Wore a Stage Costume for Her Wedding
Although many brides spend a fortune buying a wedding dress, Lindsay Mendez decided she wanted to wear an outfit that she loves. She had worn a knee-length wedding dress when she was performing in ‘Significant Other’. She loved the dress so much that she decided to wear it. Jeffrey Richards had all the costumes from the show, so she begged him to borrow it. He shipped it out for her to wear on her big day.
10. She Has Won Five Awards
Lindsay Mendez has become one of the most in-demand performers in musical theater, and her talents haven’t gone unnoticed when it comes to awards. In total, she has been nominated for a total of nine awards. Most recently, she was nominated for a 2019 Grammy Award for Best Musical Theater Album for Carousel. Unfortunately, she did not win on this occasion. However, she has won five awards in recognition of her talents. She won her first award in 2014 when she was the recipient of a Broadway.com Audience Choice Award for Favorite Replacement (Female) for her performance in ‘Wicked’. In 2017, she won a Broadway.com Audience Choice Award for Favorite Featured Actress in a Play for ‘Significant Other’. The following year, she won three awards for her performance as Carrie Pipperidge in ‘Carousel’. These were the Tony Award for Best Featured Actress in a Musical, an Outer Circle Critics Award for Outstanding Featured Actress in a Musical, and a Drama Desk Award for Outstanding Featured Actress in a Musical.
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