BEING FRANKIE VALLI is a full-time job. Ask actor Brad Weinstock. “It’s unlike anything that I’ve ever done theatrically,” he says. “It’s definitely the most challenging.” Weinstock is one of the core quartet in “Jersey Boys,” now playing at Proctors in Schenectady. Once every performance day he progresses from warbling “I Can’t Give You Anything But Love,” to powerhouse renditions of “Sherry” and “Walk Like a Man” and the many other Four Seasons hits, in a dead-on version of Valli’s signature style.
In order to maintain it, he explains, “I’ve become a very regimented person. I drink a gallon of water a day, I sleep with a humidifier, I steam with a personal inhaler, I have lots of electrolytes. And I sleep probably ten hours a night, because if you lose sleep or are dehydrated, the falsetto is the first thing to go.”
Weinstock and his fellow cast-members were fêted yesterday at the annual spring get-together of the Proctors Guild. Actors who spend time on the road will tell you that a touring company becomes a family; here the dynamic was obvious.
There’s also a physical quality about an actor that goes beyond the merely structural. Actors are comfortable as attention-centers, and stand or sit with an unselfconscious ease that nevertheless says, “I know you’re looking at me.” Even when off script, they tend to express themselves well. It’s very easy to believe, within a few minutes of falling into conversation with an actor, that you’ve become this person’s best friend – and you walk away from the encounter unaware that you did little of the talking.