Backstage on Broadway: Catch up with stars of ‘An American in Paris’ while they get ready for their show

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It's all laughs backstage at An American in Paris

"I saw Cats last night and I instantly started crying because it brought back so many memories!" Leanne laughed while talking to Jill.

Leanne Cope and Jill Paice catch up everyday before showtime.

“I just pin it back a couple of times and then I put this bandage on, which makes me look like I just had a lobotomy," Leanne joked while starting to get ready.

As they pun curl their hair and apply their makeup, we find out how it all started for the women who play Milo and Lise.

“I think I was about five when I first started dancing," Leanne remembered. "My mom always wanted to do ballet but she went to ballroom classes instead because that’s where my gram sent here, so she sent me to ballet.”

Web extra: Leanne Cope talks breaking her pointe shoes

Those classes turned into a prestigious career with England's Royal Ballet.

“I didn’t think I wanted to wear a tutu or be a princess and wear a tiara but that’s how it turned out,” Leanne said.

So when Leanne got this role, she fulfilled her dream, even nabbed a Tony Award nomination.

Web extra:  Leanne Cope shares who inspires and helps her get into character every night

Next door, Jill shares her journey.

“My dad was in the Air Force and we moved around a lot," she explained. "When I was in the 3rd grade we moved from Greece to Ohio, so I struggled.”

Her mom encouraged her to try out for the new school's play.

“I knew from very early on that this was like the most fun I could ever have in my life,” Jill said. "And then I realized I could actually get paid for it."

Web extra: Jill Paice tells us the story of how she met her husband

Eight times a week they transform into their roles, and topping it all off... the wigs!

“The mic goes on my head because both mine and Jill's costumes are backless so seeing the cord wasn’t that appealing to our director ," Leanne laughed. "It was a little difficult at first because of the weight on my turns, but I got used to it pretty quickly."

The wigs are all made from real hair and usually styled the night before. And as they put on their finishing touches, these best friends wish each other luck!

“Have a good one Jill," Leanne smiled. "You too!" Jill replied.

An American In Paris will be closing on October 9th and will re-open on London's West End in march 2017.

 

Produced by: Kim Pestalozzi