Hard times worth it come opening night

26 Mar 2024

It’s a busy year for Kiwi actor Nic Kyle (12658).

He’s just finished his first solo show Deeply Unprofessional at the Hamilton Arts Festival and is off to perform in Vancouver for a few weeks. While in Canada, he’ll be part of a national tour of an incredible Andrew Lloyd Webber concert.

“Then, who knows. I’ll just continue to truck along and see what comes up. As it always is... exciting and scary!”

While based in Auckland, Nic has always travelled extensively, living and working in London for four years, Germany, Canada and the US. He returned home in 2021 and again in 2022 for the Shrek National Tour, with subsequent roles in Kinky Boots, The Music Man and Shortland Street.

“Acting is a tough industry but being able to travel the world and do what you love is rare. I've always loved a good story and this job lets me take people on journeys to places and emotions they may never have been before,” Nic says.

“Sometimes there are weeks at a time where you are just auditioning and hoping you get the job. Sometimes you are full-time 9–5, six days a week and sometimes you are up ‘til all hours working on lights and staging in preparation for an opening night. Early morning auditions, lots of travel and hearing 'no' a lot more than you hear 'yes' means you do have to have a pretty thick skin.

“There are definitely hard times but standing behind the curtain on opening night makes it all worth it.”

Named Male Performer of the Year Award at the prestigious Variety Artists Awards in 2023,

Nic says one of the biggest challenges an actor faces is engaging the audience.

“Getting people interested and excited about shows has always been, and will always be, tough. The thing I would love to engage audiences in more is an understanding of where their ticket price is going so they can make more informed decisions where to spend their hard earned money.

“With the cost of living the way it is, it's more important than ever. Supporting local shows that are paying their actors is vital! We are feeling the crunch along with everyone and theatre companies, like our own Court Theatre, need to be supported so they can continue to support local artists giving their heart and soul to this increasingly difficult industry,” Nic says.

Nic has always loved Musical Theatre and especially comedies. Playing King Arthur in Monty Python's Spamalot in Germany ticked all the boxes for him. However, his bucket list role is definitely Bobby in Stephen Sondheim's Company.

“It's drama, comedy and great music all rolled into one.”

Among his many career highlights, Nic lists opening his first play in the Westend, Savage, for which he was nominated Best Actor, playing Jesus in The Court Theatre's Jesus Christ Superstar, and Harold Hill in The Music Man in Auckland alongside the Royal NZ Navy Band.

Conversely, the pandemic was by far the hardest time of his career, as it was for so many others.

If you want to follow along with future shows or just show your support for Nic, you can follow him on Instagram @nickylekiwi.