For Her Broadway Debut, She Sings Alicia Keys’s Story


“Hell’s Kitchen” ran at the Public from October to January — it was sold out, and well-received. Moon is now relishing her Broadway moment.

“You know, I got scared that in the stress of all this, I would crumble, and I’m not going to lie — I’ve had my moments,” she said. “During tech I had a huge breakdown where everything hit me at once, and I fell apart during ‘Teenage Love Affair,’ ran offstage, came up into my dressing room, had people praying over me, got through it.”

But mostly, she’s good. “I’ve had little moments like that, but overall, this is the healthiest I’ve ever been in my life,” she said. “I love being here for the first time in a very long time.”

She’s getting lots of support. Keys, describing Moon as some combination of mentee, little sister and friend, is trying to give the advice she wished she had received. Older castmates are sharing tips on vocal health and endurance. Moon has become particularly close with Bean, who plays her mother, and who has put a lot of thought into how best to be helpful without being meddlesome. “We are bringing our own mother-daughter stuff,” Bean said. “There’s a lot of things in the soup, and that’s what gives it flavor.”

With the help of her castmates, Moon is learning how to manage the rigors of an eight-show week. “I stay home with my cat and my dog and I drink tea and I watch Netflix and I steam [my vocal cords],” she said. “I don’t drink. I don’t smoke. I try to stay out of the streets.”

But certain aspects of her life are changing quickly: “Hell’s Kitchen,” with 13 Tony nominations, is a leading contender for best musical, and there’s now a lot of what she calls “sparkle.” In March, she made her first late-night talk-show appearance, on the “Tonight Show” with Jimmy Fallon. Last month, the show’s opening night audience included Michelle Obama and Oprah Winfrey. And on Monday night, she was a guest at the Met Gala, dressed by Collina Strada.



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