You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Zachary Levi: Theater Is For Nerds, Too

'First Date' bowed Aug. 8 at the Longacre Theater

For Zachary Levi, the musical “First Date” is indeed his first date — with Broadway. So he’s been getting acquainted.

“I didn’t even know what previews were when I signed on to this,” he said at the tuner’s opening night party at Gotham Hall Aug. 8. Previews, it turns out, are what he missed a week of when he went off to San Diego Comic-Con last month for Nerd HQ, the annual otaku gathering and event series he founded.

At first glance, it might seem like nerds and theater avids don’t share much overlap, but not so fast, according to Levi. “Being a nerd just means being passionate about something,” he said. And theater fans certainly are that.

Just ask co-songwriter Michael Weiner, who soon after the opening night party was scheduled to jet off to Seattle for rehearsals for the world premiere of his next musical, “Secondhand Lions.”

“There are people who have seen ‘First Date’ like 10 times already,” marveled Weiner, another Broadway tyro. “And they’re not related to me.”

At least Weiner and Levi have co-star Krysta Rodriguez to be their Broadway dating coach. She’s not only been a Broadway actress (“The Addams Family”), she’s played one on TV (“Smash”).

“I tell you, doing a TV show about Broadway made me a little soft for the real deal,” she explained with a laugh. “Eight shows a week is hard work!”

Popular on Variety

More Legit

  • Sam Rockwell and Laurence Fishburne

    Sam Rockwell, Laurence Fishburne Starring in Broadway Revival of 'American Buffalo'

    Laurence Fishburne and Sam Rockwell will star in an upcoming Broadway revival of David Mamet’s “American Buffalo.” The show marks Rockwell’s first appearance on the Great White Way since his 2014 performance in the revival of Sam Shepard’s “Fool for Love.” The five-year absence saw him pick up an Oscar for “Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, [...]

  • Secret Derren Brown review

    Broadway Review: 'Derren Brown: Secret'

    Audiences love to be fooled, whether it’s with clever plotting with a twist, the arrival of an unexpected character or even a charming flimflam man with a British accent. The latter is Derren Brown, and he’s entertaining audiences for a limited run at the Cort Theatre, where he is playing head-scratching mind games and other [...]

  • Matthew Broderick, Sarah Jessica ParkerNew York

    Matthew Broderick and Sarah Jessica Parker to Reunite on Broadway for 'Plaza Suite'

    Real-life couple Matthew Broderick and Sarah Jessica Parker are hitting the Broadway stage again for a reboot of the late Neil Simon’s 1968 play “Plaza Suite.” The staging will mark the Broadway directorial debut of Tony award-winner John Benjamin Hickey. Set in New York City’s Plaza Hotel in Suite 719, “Plaza Suite” is comprised of [...]

  • Derren Brown

    Listen: Derren Brown Spills His Broadway 'Secret'

    Derren Brown has spent a lot of his career performing magic shows on theater stages — but he’ll be the first to tell you that magic usually doesn’t make for great theater. Listen to this week’s podcast below: “If you’re a magician of any sort, you can make stuff happen with a click of your [...]

  • A Very Expensive Poison review

    London Theater Review: 'A Very Expensive Poison'

    Vladimir Putin owes his power to the stage. The president’s closest advisor trained as a theatre director before applying his art to politics, and ran Russia like a staged reality, spinning so many fictions that truth itself began to blur. By scrambling the story and sowing confusion, Putin could exert absolute control. The long-awaited latest [...]

  • Betrayal review Tom Hiddleston

    Broadway Review: 'Betrayal' With Tom Hiddleston

    and Zawe Ashton as a long-married couple and Charlie Cox as the secret lover. Director Jamie Lloyd’s impeccable direction — now on Broadway, after a hot-ticket London run — strips Pinter’s 1978 play to its bare bones: the excruciating examination of the slow death of a marriage.  It’s a daring approach, leaving the characters nowhere [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content