You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Tituss Burgess Talks ‘Kimmy Schmidt,’ Previews ‘Preacher’s Wife’ Musical

Though it was billed as an evening with “Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt” star Tituss Burgess on Saturday night at the Sayers Club, there was cause for double celebration when moderator Yvette Nicole Brown announced it was also her birthday. “I didn’t say that to get applause,” she noted. “But just to say there is nowhere else I would rather be than with this wonderful man.”

The cozy Hollywood club was decked out in velvet fuchsia walls with furs on the couches for guests, in an homage to Burgess’ lovable, flamboyant character Titus Andromedon on the hit Netflix show. Burgess talked about making the transition from theater (where he appeared in such musicals as “Guys and Dolls” with Oliver Platt and “The Little Mermaid”) to television. His first job was on “30 Rock,” and he was an hour late to his audition. He almost didn’t show up, but when he did, was shocked to realize they were running an hour and a half behind.

“30 Rock” was his first time in front of a camera, and he admitted to being confused. “When they called ‘cut,’ I thought they meant me,” he revealed with a laugh. “I thought I was cut.” Burgess also shared that after shooting a scene with “30 Rock” star Alec Baldwin, Baldwin told Burgess he was a great scene partner, which greatly inspired the actor. The two are now nominated against each other for supporting actor in a comedy at next month’s Emmy Awards. While this is Burgess’ third consecutive nod, he also spoke about landing his first SAG Award nomination this year, and how it was special because “it’s from my peers.”

After the Q&A with Brown, Burgess took to the piano on stage to play two songs for the packed audience. The first was “All I Need,” a song he wrote for the musical based on the 1996 movie “The Preacher’s Wife,” which is Broadway bound. Explaining that he saw the film as a teenager and it had a huge impact, Burgess began writing the music and lyrics even before he had obtained the rights to the film — something he advised the audience to never do.

He then ended the evening with a rendition of “(One for My Baby) One More for the Road” before getting the audience to join him in singing “Happy Birthday” to Brown. Burgess also stuck around afterward to take selfies with everyone in attendance.

More Scene

  • Mj Rodriguez, Nico Santos to Announce

    Mj Rodriguez, Nico Santos to Announce GLAAD Media Award Nominations

    Mj Rodriguez and Nico Santos are set to announce the nominees for the 30th annual GLAAD Media Awards. The “Pose” star and “Crazy Rich Asians” funny man will make the announcement during a live-stream from the AT&T Hello Lounge at the Sundance Film Festival on Friday, Jan. 25. “The images and stories recognized by the [...]

  • Emile Hirsch, Matt SmileyEmile Hirsch hosts

    Emile Hirsch Hosts Smiley Face Art Opening at Mondrian Hotel

    Despite the rain on Wednesday night in West Hollywood, there were plenty of smiles inside the Mondrian hotel thanks to artist Matt Smiley‘s Refresh exhibition. Not only is Smiley his real last name, but several of his paintings and other pieces in the exhibit feature smiley faces. “I’ve seen more smiley symbolism lately, and I’ve [...]

  • Randall Park, left, and Constance Wu

    Constance Wu Wants Her 'Fresh Off the Boat' Co-Star Randall Park to Host the Oscars

    While the Academy may have decided to go hostless for this year’s Oscars, that doesn’t mean the rest of Hollywood has stopped thinking about who would be a good choice for the emceeing gig. Former host Whoopi Goldberg recently suggested Ken Jeong. Jeong said, when he was a guest on “The View,” Goldberg told him [...]

  • 'Schitt's Creek' Stars Reveal Dream Guest

    'Schitt's Creek' Cast Reveals Dream Guest Stars: Oprah, Beyonce and ...

    “Schitt’s Creek” has big dreams. Dan Levy, who stars as David on the series, says his wish list of guest stars includes Oprah, Beyonce, Mariah Carey and Gwyneth Paltrow. “All for different reasons, none of whom we’ll get,” he cracked at the Critics’ Choice Awards. For those who haven’t caught on to the “Schitt’s Creek” [...]

  • Barbra Streisand and Gisele Bundchen

    Barbra Streisand and Gisele Bündchen to Be Honored at UCLA Science Gala

    Science can be very glamorous. It certainly will be during Oscar week on Feb. 21 when the UCLA Institute of the Environment & Sustainability (IoES) honors Barbra Streisand and Gisele Bündchen for environmental activism at its annual Hollywood for Science Gala. “When I moved to LA, the air was unbreathable. Rivers were catching fire in [...]

  • Don Cheadle and Andrew Rannells Black

    Don Cheadle, Andrew Rannells Talk Snorting 'Coke' on 'Black Monday'

    “Black Monday” show creators David Caspe and Jordan Cahen divulged an intriguing detail to come later in the first season of the new Showtime comedy at its world premiere, held at the Theatre at Ace Hotel on Monday night in Los Angeles. “The fourth or fifth episode opens with a sexual harassment seminar, which very well [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content