By Shari Goldstein Stern
“Hey Mikey, he likes it,” theater directors say when working with Texas native Mikey Abrams. Some people are just meant to take the stage, and such is the case with this triple-threat. You might call him a comedic actor, dramatic leading man, dancer, singer or drama queen. He is all of those.
Abrams is currently playing Oscar in “The Odd Couple” at North Texas Performing Arts in Plano, where it opened to a full house last weekend.
When asked about playing the role he said:
“It is great not to have to shave for a role. I love being a slob and wearing jeans and a T-shirt, and not worrying about how I have to sit or behave. If I have to burp, I can just do it on stage.”
Abrams has performed in theaters throughout Dallas, Fort Worth and North Texas. In his shows, he demonstrates his wide range of characters. Among those roles have been: Luis Molina in “Kiss of the Spider Woman” at Uptown Players (UP); Ronald Reagan in Theatre Three’s “The Wedding Singer;” and Gremio in Garland Summer Musicals’ “Kiss me Kate.” Abrams has “followers” everywhere he performs.
One of those followers is director Buff Shurr, a former Broadway director who has directed Abrams in Garland Summer Musicals. He said: “Mikey is bright, funny, a step-ahead, creative, energetic, very vocal, and, did I say stage-smart? Give me a cast full of Mikeys and I’ll die of happy exhaustion.
For a while in the ’90s the actor performed at the Granbury Opera house, “… because I wanted to buy groceries,” he said. He’s had roles in New York’s “Re-Designing Women,” “Don’t Tell Mamas,” and others both on and off-Broadway. Also in the ’90s, B.J. Cleveland directed him in “Hair” at Theatre Arlington. Additional local theaters at which he has appeared are Runway Theatre, Lyric Stage, Hip Pocket Theatre, and others. He sings with Turtle Creek Chorale. He said, “But I call UP ‘home.’”
Earlier this summer Abrams’ talents were on display as he returned to UP’s 17th annual production of “Broadway Our Way.” (BOW) He’s been a cast-member four years of the outrageous musical and he’s thrilled to be back with the show every year. Abrams said: “What I love about BOW is it’s like summer camp. You do what you love. Everyone does something that makes them shine. It’s great to see old friends and meet new ones.
I think there were more young divas in the cast this year, but maybe that’s because I’m old.”
“UP has been really good to me,” Abrams said. “I have had the honor of playing roles where the “nelly” gay man is the hero of the story with ‘La Cage Aux Folles’ and ‘Kiss of the Spiderwoman.’”
According to Abrams: “Growing up, I never got to see stories about me. The lead character was never LGBTQ. If there was a gay character, it was always the funny friend or evil sidekick.”
“UP provides stories that feature LGBTQ heroes that speak to our community. We are the heroes. We are the villains. We are the protagonists. And I am very grateful to UP for giving me the opportunities I have had and for telling those stories,” Abrams concluded.
The thespian holds a B.F.A. in Theatre from Southwestern State University and a secondary teaching certification in theatre and speech from Texas Christian University. He continues to grow with additional training in acting, voice, tap and jazz. “My parents always come to see me and support me in shows. They are all proud of me. They all kvell,” Abrams said.
For his “day job” Abrams has been a real estate agent with Texas Pride Realty for the past 15 years. Before that he taught theater at North Garland High School. “I was doing so well at [real estate] I decided to do it full time,” he said.”
He sells residential real estate all over DFW and beyond. Abrams and his husband, Scott Taylor, live in Carrollton with their four-legged pals: Baby Doll and Cookie.
The triple-threat hasn’t slowed down at all during this long, hot, summer. He was a guest star in the Carol Burnett sketch show, “To Carol, With Love” at Resolute Theatre Project in July. Now the busy realtor and actor is co-starring as Oscar in Neil Simon’s “The Odd Couple,” which will continue with evening performances and matinees at North Texas Performing Arts – Plano at the Shops at Willow Bend in Plano.