×
You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

The Secret Ways Zachary Quinto Connected With Andrew Rannells On-Stage

For Variety’s latest issue, we asked Andrew Rannells to write a tribute to Zachary Quinto, one of 50 people to make our New Power of New York list. Here’s why Quinto represents a new generation of movers and shakers that capture the best of Manhattan. For the full list, click here.

To know Zachary Quinto’s work is to know how strong and stoic he can be. How through his stillness, he can invoke intimidation and fear and power. To get to know Zach, the man off-screen, off-stage, is to know something different. He is still powerful and charming, and he can scare the hell out of you with one laser-like stare, but he’s also silly. There’s an impish quality to him that is unexpected and lovely and warm.

I spent the summer onstage with Zach in “The Boys in the Band.” It was, please forgive the overused term, a magical experience. It was a unique combination of material and casting and timing that made us all instantly fall in love with each other and remain unusually present. Zach played Harold, the sharp-tongued, hard-edged unofficial leader of the Band. (I played Larry. The slut.) He played his part with precision stillness, landing each joke, each stare, each gesture, with sniper-like exactness. Harold was cold and slightly dangerous, but Zach infused him with a childishness and warmth that was disarming. Harold was made of ice but somehow not cold.

It amazed me every night as I sat next to Zach onstage, as he stuck every comic landing, that he still managed to connect with me in small, meaningful, often hilarious ways. We developed a language of nonverbal noises to indicate our pleasure or displeasure with how the jokes were being received. A high-pitched “Hmmm” meant something went well. A low, guttural “Ugghhhh” meant not so much. We were as much Larry and Harold in those moments as we were Andrew and Zach. He walked a beautiful tightrope act in which he dazzled but stayed grounded somehow. I was always charmed and amazed. I am most certainly a fan of my friend both onstage and off.

Andrew Rannells is the author of the upcoming “Too Much Is Not Enough: A Memoir of Fumbling Toward Adulthood.”

More Legit

  • A still image from The Seven

    How Magic Leap, Video Games Are Defining Future of Royal Shakespeare Company

    At the Royal Shakespeare Company in Stratford upon Avon, Sarah Ellis has the difficult job of figuring out where theater of the 1500s fits into the 21st century. As Director of Digital Development, a title which might seem out of place in an industry ruled by live, human performances, Ellis represents a recent seachange on [...]

  • Gary review

    Broadway Review: 'Gary: A Sequel to Titus Andronicus' With Nathan Lane

    Nathan Lane and Kristine Nielsen, two of the funniest people on the face of the earth, play street cleaners tasked with carting away the dead after the civil wars that brought down the Roman Empire. Well, a job’s a job, and Gary (Lane) and Janice (Nielsen) go about their disgusting work without complaint. “Long story [...]

  • Laurie Metcalf, John Lithgow'Hillary and Clinton'

    Why John Lithgow Worried About Starring in Broadway's 'Hillary and Clinton'

    When Lucas Hnath first conceived of “Hillary and Clinton” in 2008, he was writing for and about a very different America. Now, a total reimagining of the show has made its way to Broadway with Laurie Metcalf and John Lithgow in the titular roles. At the opening on Thursday night, the cast and creatives talked [...]

  • Three Sisters review

    London Theater Review: 'Three Sisters'

    Ennui has become exhaustion in playwright Cordelia Lynn’s new version of “Three Sisters.” The word recurs and recurs. Everyone on the Prozorov estate is worn out; too “overworked” to do anything but sit around idle. Are they killing time or is time killing them? Either way, a play often framed as a study of boredom [...]

  • Patrick Page, Amber Grey, Eva Noblezada,

    'Hadestown' Took 12 Years to Get to Broadway, but It's More Relevant Than Ever

    When “Hadestown” was first staged as a tiny, DIY theater project in Vermont, those involved could never have predicted that it was the start of a 12-year journey to Broadway — or how painfully relevant it would be when it arrived. At Wednesday night’s opening at the Walter Kerr Theatre, the cast and creatives discussed [...]

  • Hillary and Clinton review

    Broadway Review: Laurie Metcalf and John Lithgow in 'Hillary and Clinton'

    If anyone could play Hillary Clinton, it’s Laurie Metcalf – and here she is, in Lucas Hnath’s “Hillary and Clinton,” giving a performance that feels painfully honest and true. And if anyone could capture Bill Clinton’s feckless but irresistible charm, that would be John Lithgow – and here he is, too. Who better to work [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content