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Louisville actor returns home during ‘Frozen’ Broadway tour

A professional headshot of actor Jack Brewer, who grew up near Louisville.
Andrew Alstat
/
Andrew Alstat Photography
Jack Brewer's love for theatre began growing up around Louisville and now he's back home as a cast member in the touring production of Disney's "Frozen".

A Louisville-area actor is returning home during the PNC Broadway in Louisville Frozen tour.

Jack Brewer grew up right outside of Louisville and attended South Oldham High School. Now, he’s returning to the city during PNC Broadway in Louisville’s “Frozen” tour stop at the Kentucky Center for the Arts.

Disney’s “Frozen” first debuted on Broadway in March 2018, but the COVID-19 pandemic shutdown the production in March 2020. During its initial run, it was performed more than 800 times.

The national tour restarted in Sept. 2021 after also experiencing a pandemic-induced pause. And the reupped performance schedule brought Brewer home for a spell.

For the next few weeks, Brewer hopes to entertain audiences with his role as shopkeeper Oaken in the musical production.

Brewer said Oaken is one of the few roles that gets to break the fourth wall and interact directly with audiences.

“I really get to get a gauge of the cultures of each city that they go into because each city will respond to me in a different way,” Brewer said. “I have to adapt and adjust in order to give them what I feel like they need.”

He said the company’s opening performance in Louisville and their warm reception to him bodes well for the rest of the run.

“I for sure could already feel the support of the hometown — I had a few people in the audience and maybe it was them like cheering me on — but it feels really really special,” Brewer said.

While the “Frozen” touring company is in town, Brewer has been appointed as the unofficial cast tour guide.

“I put together a distillery tour for us on our day off and so they're gonna get a taste of some Kentucky bourbon,” Brewer said.

He has also suggested that people check out local favorites like Please and Thank You.

And while he hopes his castmates enjoy the city, he said there’s one thing he’s most looking forward to.

“I am most excited to do while I'm here is to just like to see my family and the people who I don't necessarily get to see all the time since I live on the road all year,” Brewer said.

Brewer hopes that he can show young people that following their passion for the arts can pan out.

“I know when I was coming up there were for sure some people who had kind of hinted at the idea that theater wasn't a viable career option,” Brewer said. “I would tell people that there is a space for you in the arts and there is a way that you can thrive doing the thing that you love.”

Looking back and returning home has given Brewer a chance to reflect on the arts community he was raised in.

“I really appreciate the fact that I grew up in a community that has arts surrounding us,” Brewer said. “It's not lost on me that it's really really special that I was given the resources in life in order to try out different art forms.”

He said returning to the place where he was supported and allowed to cultivate his creative expression is special.

Disney’s “Frozen” runs at the Kentucky Center for the Performing Arts through Feb. 4.

Breya Jones is the Arts & Culture Reporter for LPM. Email Breya at bjones@lpm.org.