How To Be More Chill explores how the extraordinary musical Be More Chill arrived on Broadway in Spring 2019 with unprecedented momentum. Hosted by Ilana Levine of Little Known Facts and Sam Maher of YesBroadway, the podcast centers around deep-dive interviews with the show’s creators and cast members as they give you the behind-the-scenes scoop on how the show entered the international pop culture zeitgeist on such a massive scale and how the impact of the show’s fandom brought the show to Broadway. Good luck being chill about this podcast - Sam and Ilana definitely aren’t!
Ilana and Sam sit down with Broadway’s SQUIP himself, Jason Tam! Fun fact: Jason was the very first actor to ever record the song "Michael In The Bathroom." Find out why and how in this episode along with all the ways he approached the role, the freedom he was given to create the character both physically and emotionally, and what it is like to be a part of the ensemble of talented “ Iconis Family“ members. From growing up in Hawaii and starring in Les Misérables at 10, to his life as a soap opera star, to how the fans of Be More Chill have filled his heart and his life with so much joy, Jason’s raw honesty and his commitment to the work is so inspiring…but: so is the story he shared about the thing that Will Roland did on stage one night that made him burst into laughter! Jason Tam, let’s do this.
Lauren Marcus shines as Brooke in Be More Chill. She also happens to be married to Joe Iconis and she also happened to go to the 2019 Tony Awards. In this episode, Lauren takes us behind the scenes of an 8-show week on Broadway followed by a car ride to Radio City for an epic adventure you’ll remember for the rest of your life! Lauren is hilarious and inspiring as she spills the tea on her romance with Joe, her first encounter with Be More Chill, and her favorite moments from BMC 1.0, 2.0, and 3.0. Sam and Ilana are heart eyes emoji times a billion for the great Lauren Marcus!
In this very special episode, Sam and Ilana sit down with Be More Chill book writer Joe Tracz. From growing up in Detroit and seeing Broadway national tours to working in a Borders bookstore and getting to know the YA literary scene, Joe tells us about how he cames on board the project and combined his television and film writing experience with his passion for musical theater. From Two River Theater to Off-Broadway to Broadway, Joe Tracz explains the process of making Be More Chill from his point of view. Oh, and whatever forces combined to have Joe talk about the person who called in the testimonial for his episode moments before we played it for him: THANK YOU!
Sam and Ilana sit down with Broadway leading man Will Roland and were mesmerized as he shared his history as a member of the Joe Iconis Family and how the role of Jeremy in Be More Chill came his way. From the day he first encountered Joe Iconis when he was still a student at NYU to Dear Evan Hansen to the Off-Broadway run of Be More Chill, Will shares never-before-heard stories and revelations from behind the scenes that will make your heart explode with joy!
Be More Chill producer Jennifer Ashley Tepper takes Sam and Ilana on a journey that starts with how she met Joe Iconis through all the behind-the-scenes schemes and plans to share this brilliant musical with the world. Go on a deep dive into some of the new and unique perspectives Jen has on the industry as a young producer who does an excellent job of balancing old school and new school approaches to producing a Broadway musical. In the words of Joe Iconis, who gives us the fan testimonial for this episode: “Jen Tepper Forever!”
Be More Chill star George Salazar walks Sam and Ilana through the experience of coming on board for the original workshop presentation of Be More Chill and then the world premiere production at Two River Theater in New Jersey and its sold-out run Off-Broadway in Summer 2018. George also dives deep into the Be More Chill's incredible fandom and how they played such a huge part in getting the show to Broadway. Fair warning: get a giant box of tissues ready...
In this inaugural episode, Sam and Ilana interview composer/lyricist Joe Iconis as he walks us through the origins of the Be More Chill journey - all the way from the nexus of the idea of writing the musical leading up to to the opening night of the world premiere at Two River Theater in Red Bank, New Jersey and then the making of the triumphant original cast recording of the show.