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Broadway star from Colorado talks about role in Tony Award-winning musical 'A Strange Loop'

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Jason Veasey talked to Rocky Mountain PBS about performing in a groundbreaking Broadway musical.

DENVER When you’re a cast member of a prestigious and award-winning Broadway play, taking a break every once in a while is important. 

“I’m doing all right. These are actually the first few words I’ve spoken today. I got called out of the matinee to give my voice a rest,” Jason Veasey explained to me when connected for our interview. Veasey plays the character ‘Thought 5’ in the Tony award winning musical “A Strange Loop,” produced by Jennifer Hudson.

“It’s a big Black and queer a** American Broadway show, and I’ve been a part of it since development for the last ten years. It feels weird to know that this thing that I’ve been a part of for so long has this reach to people and people are finding out about it and responding in a major way,” said Veasey.

Meet Jason Veasey: A Colorado Springs man who performs in a ground-breaking Broadway musical

“A Strange Loop” is the first Broadway production in which a Black, openly gay man is the main character, and it won best musical at the 2022 Tony Awards. The show’s title references cognitive science, which is defined as the study of thought, learning and mental organization. 

“'A Strange Loop' is a musical about a Black gay musical theater writer, writing about a Black gay musical theater writer, writing about a Black gay musical theater writer,” added Veasey with a laugh.

Veasey feels that as a Black gay man himself, it’s beyond time for the creative and art worlds to formally recognize the work of Black queer people, “The contributions of Black queer people to art and culture have been going on as long as we’ve been in this country. So, I do think it’s time on this level that we get more acknowledgement, stories being told and access to stories being told.”

Photo credit: Blue Photography.

Veasey now lives in New York but graduated from the University of Northern Colorado and spent his teenage years living in Colorado Springs — a time he said was difficult. 

“Growing up in Colorado Springs was very definitive for me in the sense that it was the biggest culture shock I’d ever had from being a military kid," he explained. "We lived in Montgomery, Alabama before that and oddly enough that shift was softly traumatic for me. It wasn’t that I hadn’t been around a ton of white people before, it was that I hadn’t been around white people who didn’t know what to do around Black people. In the South, whether they’re racist or not, they still know how to be around Black people because Black people are everywhere."

Veasey said he is lucky because his parents and family have always been supportive of him in every way and his sexuality was never an issue. 

“It’s having parents that loved me unconditionally. My urge for people, particularly in places where there aren’t a lot of Black folks is invest in these young kids now before there’s proof of them even being something", said Veasey. "Let these kids know now that they have something to offer because the benefits of that are endless for themselves, for community and society.”

Veasey knows the importance of receiving support as a young dreamer of the stage who is now living out those ambitions. He first appeared on Broadway in the Lion King in 2011 after spending years working in various productions as an actor. As The Gazette reports he was nominated for a 2003 Denver Post Ovation Award when he starred as Jesus in Town Hall Arts Center’s “Godspell.”

Veasey also performed for Walden Family Playhouse, Arvada Center and Lone Tree Arts Center before making his Denver Center debut in the DCPA Theatre Company’s “Smart People” in 2017. You can also see Veasey perform in a number of TV shows and smaller roles in movies like "American Gangster."

For now, Veasey plans on resting up until his next performance in “A Strange Loop” while he continues to appreciate the show’s success. 

“I feel pleasantly and satisfyingly exhausted," he said. "I feel like I’m in a dream world.”


Dana Knowles is a multimedia journalist at Rocky Mountain PBS and can be reached at danaknowles@rmpbs.org.

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