×
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 TV

  • Tyler Perry

    Tyler Perry Sets White House Drama 'The Oval' at BET

    Tyler Perry has scored a straight-to-series order at BET for a drama set at the White House, Variety has confirmed. The series, titled “The Oval,” will introduce viewers to the new first family moving into the White House. Ed Quinn will star as President Hunter Franklin, while Kron Moore will play First Lady Victoria Franklin. The [...]

  • Kira Kelly Cinematographer Queen Sugar

    'Queen Sugar' DP on How Ava DuVernay Encourages Creativity on the OWN Series

    Cinematographer Kira Kelly, who earned an Emmy nomination for her work on Ava DuVernay’s “13th,” feels that her time spent on nonfiction projects over the past two decades has improved her ability to cope with the demands of shooting narrative fare.  The scaled-down resources — often just Kelly and maybe a focus puller or a [...]

  • MY SO CALLED LIFE

    'My So-Called Life' 25 Years Later: Claire Danes and Wilson Cruz Look Back

    When “My So-Called Life” debuted in 1994, there weren’t many portraits of gay teenagers on television. But Wilson Cruz changed that with his depiction of Rickie, a proudly rebellious high school sophomore who was a key member of Angela Chase’s social circle. As a true confidant to Claire Danes’ Angela, Rickie was both a TV [...]

  • Producer John Wells photogrpahed at his

    John Wells Productions Sets Rich New Deal With Warner Bros. Television

    John Wells Productions has renewed its ties to Warner Bros. Television with a rich five-year overall deal that will extend the prolific producer’s tenure at the studio to nearly 40 years. The deal, which is said to reach into nine figures, runs through 2024 and calls for Wells’ company to develop a wide range of [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content