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ShowTickets Q&A: Andrew Polec of ‘Bat Out Of Hell’

Category Broadway

|by Jeryl Brunner |

Catch Polec in the hit jukebox musical through September 8th only

Andrew Polec stars as Strat in Jim Steinman's Bat Out of Hell: The Musical. The rock musical with a book, music and lyrics by Jim Steinman, combines three Bat Out Of Hell albums. Polec, who originated the role of Strat, is the leader of a group called The Lost. In this post-apocalyptic story, their DNA became frozen when they were 18. As a result, they never age. Strat is doing his best to navigate this chaotic world as he falls in love with Raven, who just so happens to be the daughter of a tyrannical leader. The talented cast includes Christina Bennington, Bradley Dean, Lena Hall, Danielle Steers, Tyrick Wiltez Jones, Will Branner, Lincoln Clauss, Kayla Cyphers, Jessica Jaunich, Paulina Jurzec, Adam Kemmerer, Nick Martinez, Harper Miles, Erin Mosher, Aramie Payton, Andres Quintero, Tiernan Tunnicliffe and Kaleb Wells. The musical features classic songs like “You Took The Words Right Out of My Mouth,” “Bat Out Of Hell,” “I Would Do Anything For Love (But I Won’t Do That),” “Paradise By The Dashboard Light” and “Two Out Of Three Ain’t Bad.” 

Christina Bennington and Andrew Polec star in ‘Bat Out of Hell’ (Photo: Little Fang Photo)

Christina Bennington and Andrew Polec star in ‘Bat Out of Hell’ (Photo: Little Fang Photo)

How did you learn about Bat Out Of Hell?
Andrew Polec: I had heard about this show when I was at an open call for SpongeBob SquarePants. Someone next to me, in passing, said, “Hey, are you trying out for Bat Out of Hell down the street?” And I said, “Do you mean Meatloaf’s Bat Out of Hell?”  He said “No, no. That’s a misnomer. I think it's written by some guy named Jim.” And I said, “Jim Steinman and Meatloaf worked together. Jim wrote all the music for Meatloaf. This is the Bat Out of Hell musical.” You grow up listening to this music. And now it's becoming a musical and you think, “I have to go there. I have to be a part of this.” But it was complete serendipity that I ended up there.

Did you always want to perform in musical theater?
AP: I was not originally a musical theater kid. I grew up in Bucks County, Pennsylvania, wanting to play in the dirt, and play Lacrosse. I thought I would play sports until high school, and then go do something expected, like become a doctor or lawyer or something like that. And that all changed when I got into a really, really bad bicycle accident, not unlike the “Bat Of Hell” song. I was going down a hill really fast and crashed. I got a really bad head injury, and couldn’t play contact sports anymore. I didn't know what to do. My dad really felt for me because I had so much energy. He started playing me rock music. And one that really got to me was “Paradise By the Dashboard Light.” Seeing Meatloaf be a vocal Olympian and athletic vocal person, I thought, “Oh my gosh! How can I do this? When can I do more of this?”

What qualities does Strat have that you adore?
AP: The thing I love about Strat is that he is the epitome of rock and roll. I pulled so many elements from so many rock stars to create the character. Obviously, I am pulling from Meat Loaf and Jim Steinman. Jim Steinman was also really influenced by Jim Morrison. Then I throw in other elements of Iggy Pop, Cedric Bixler-Zavala and Anthony Green. And I just kind of combine them all together, from the classic rock to the super rock to the alternative rock. I hope the character blossoms.

You have been with the show for several years, including its run in London. How has the experience changed you?
AP: This show has just evolved every single part of my life. I have understood how to love more, how to be grateful more. I was one of those struggling people in New York City before this show. It has helped me realize what is important in life, and what to hold onto, and what to love.

Also, for the audience, the show is a one-of-a-kind of experience that you’ll never forget. Repeat viewings are very, very popular among the fans because they just love the show so much.

What was one of the first Broadway shows that you saw?
AP: Beauty and the Beast. I could not figure out how Chip made his body disappear. It thought, “Wait, no. It’s not even on TV or a movie. This is real life.” And yet the whole entirety of his body was missing. It was just magical.

For more of the best of New York theater this season, check out our list of the Top Shows in New York in August 2019.

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