Mary Claire King has been enjoying her work in the musical "Chicago" on Broadway for the past two years.
King, who stars as ensemble character Liz, and is an understudy for Velma Kelly, grew up in Columbus, Indiana.
"When I was in high school I was obsessed with the movie 'Chicago,'" King said, by phone recently. She added she loved the character of Velma.
King added she never dreamed she'd be in the Broadway show.
"I always loved dancing in the style of Broadway," King said. "It was always something I enjoyed." The Fosse-style of dance, which is featured in "Chicago," is a favorite of King's.
The entertainer, who was sports-minded in school and played soccer, is also a member of a music group called RANGE.
King said, in addition to her ensemble role in the show, it's interesting also having the part as an understudy to Velma. She must be ready at all times to go on as character Velma.
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"Last year, I performed as Velma between 15 to 20 times," she said.
One of the things King loves about being in the show "Chicago" is that the band is actually on stage with the performers and not hidden in a pit.
"It's fun and suits the style of music in the show and you can feel their energy," she said.
King, who said she loves the city of Chicago, spent some time performing in the Windy City in 2016 when she was in "War Paint" at The Goodman Theatre. "War Paint" opened at The Goodman Theatre before moving to Broadway.
The performer said she was involved in musicals and sang in the church choir as a child before she became interested in athletics.
"I started playing soccer when I was 5," she said. Interest in other sports followed. King said she later got involved with the stage art after she "fell in love with musical theater."
The first musical that had a big impact on King was "Aida."
In addition to her Broadway performances, King is involved in a mentorship program.
"It's a mentorship program called 'We Are Queens.' The goal of the program is to connect industry professionals with aspiring theater artists still in college...I am so grateful I can offer some service about what I learned in almost 10 years of living (and working) in New York," she said.
Being what's called a triple threat -actor, dancer and singer- King can help various young performers with a variety of questions they may have about the business, their craft and working in the theatrical industry. She said it's important to have someone you can ask about navigating artistic work, day jobs, audition schedules and more.
"We need each other in the business," she said.
To learn more about "Chicago" on Broadway, visit chicagothemusical.com.