The highly-anticipated Volume 2 of the latest season of Stranger Things premieres on Netflix Friday, July 1. This exciting finale to season 4 features characters played by young rising stars and established actors. Did you know that before becoming beloved by the masses for starring in Stranger Things, many of the show’s stars were veterans of the Broadway stage?
Take a look at the stars of Stranger Things, from the kids to the adults, who have appeared on the Great Bright Way.
Known for playing the lovable Dustin Henderson on Stranger Things, young star Gaten Matarazzo got his career started on the stage, making his Broadway debut at just 9 years old in Priscilla, Queen of the Desert. He followed that Broadway venture up by playing one of the most iconic child characters in musical theater, portraying Gavroche in the 2014 Broadway revival of Les Misérables. After Stranger Things, he was seen again on stage in the 2019 Hollywood Bowl production of Into the Woods as Jack and will soon be seen back on Broadway playing Jared in Dear Evan Hansen starting this summer.
Now in his fourth season as the nerd turned jock Lucas Sinclair, Caleb McLaughlin is one of the rising stars on Stranger Things that also had a start on the Broadway stage. In 2012, McLaughlin took on the ferocious role of Young Simba in the iconic Disney musical The Lion King, playing the role for two years at the Minskoff Theatre. If you’re curious to find out more about McLaughlin’s journey to the stage, you can watch him look back on his time on Broadway in the docuseries Becoming on Disney+.
Responsible for memorable moments as Dustin’s long-distance girlfriend Suzie Bingham, Gabriella Pizzolo had starred in two Broadway shows before heading to the Netflix hit series. The young actress first starred on the Broadway stage in 2013, playing the titular role in Matilda. She then went on to be part of the Fun Home original Broadway cast in the spring of 2015, understudying the three child roles before taking on the role of Small Alison full-time later in 2015, playing the role through the end of the show’s Broadway run in fall 2016.
Sadie Sink has been the name on everybody’s lips this past year, from starring in Taylor Swift’s debut short film All Too Well: The Short Film to her scene-stealing turn in the latest season of Stranger Things as Max. Before being introduced to a wider audience on the second season of the beloved series in 2017, Sink was a young Broadway actress, making her debut in the 2012 revival of Annie as a standby for many of the child roles before later starring as the titular and iconic orphan. Sink also worked alongside Dame Helen Mirren in the 2015 Broadway production of The Audience, portraying Young Elizabeth. Being linked to Taylor Swift and now Kate Bush due to the much-talked-about use of “Running Up That Hill” in Stranger Things, here’s hoping her own musical talent will return to the Broadway stage someday soon.
While it’s been a moment since she graced the Broadway stage, Cara Buono, who plays Karen Wheeler, the mother of Nancy and Mike Wheeler on Stranger Things, made her Broadway debut when she was just a teenager in the 1989 production of The Tenth Man. She went on to follow that Broadway credit up with a role in 1990’s Some Americans Abroad and the 1995 revival of The Rose Tattoo.
Former Hawkins police chief and explosive event survivor Jim Hopper is played by the incomparable David Harbour, Emmy-nominated for his performance on Stranger Things, but did you know he is also a Tony Award nominee? Harbour received a nomination in 2005 for Best Performance by an Actor in a Featured Role in a Play for playing Nick in Edward Albee’s Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf?, which he starred in alongside Kathleen Turner and Bill Irwin. The actor, also known for starring in Marvel’s Black Widow, has been on Broadway a number of times, making his debut in The Rainmaker in 1999. He then appeared in The Invention of Love, The Coast of Utopia, The Merchant of Venice, and Glengarry Glen Ross. He can currently be seen on the stage in London, starring in the West End production of Mad House.
Playing the menacing and villainous Dr. Martin Brenner on Stranger Things, Matthew Modine has been on Broadway once before. In 2010, Modine starred in the short-lived production of The Miracle Worker led by stars Abigail Breslin and Alison Pill.
Briefly seen on the show as Nancy and Jonathan’s horrific boss Tom Holloway, Michael Park is a Broadway favorite. First appearing in the 1994 revival of Carousel, he’s perhaps best-known to today’s Broadway audiences for originating the role of Larry Murphy in Dear Evan Hansen. Having appeared on Broadway five other times, we hope it’s not too long till we see him on the stage again.
With the penultimate season of Stranger Things coming to an end, which other stars are you hoping to see on Broadway? Let us know on Twitter!
Last updated and effective as of January 14, 2019
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