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Queen of Ace

Christiane Noll stars in Signature Theatre Company's production of the new musical, Ace. logo
Christiane Noll in Ace
(© Stan Barouh)
The Signature Theatre Company's current production of the musical Ace boasts some of musical theater's strongest women, and Christiane Noll more than holds her own as Ruth. "She's kind of the heavy of the piece, but it's a role I've wanted to do on stage since I recorded the demo about eight years ago," she says. "In fact, Richard Obecracker told my agent he wrote it for me, and it definitely plays to my vocal strengths. I begin with this full-on diva soprano and end up belting really low. There's even this one moment when I feel I should have Brunhilde horns on."

Still, the score isn't the only reason Noll wanted to do the show. "It's a very inspirational story, and we all believe in it. It's about fathers and sons and patriotism, and it has a lot of sentimentality, which we haven't seen much of lately in musicals," she says. "Plus, when I saw Eric Schaeffer, who I worked with at Signature in The Witches of Eastwick, was directing, I kind of just invited myself into the cast. And we're quite a roomful!"

Audiences who can't make it to Virginia currently have two new opportunities to hear Noll in their living rooms -- on the recording of the Off-Broadway musical Frankenstein and her third solo CD, My Personal Property. "I'd been doing a lot of compilation CDs with John Yap and Jay Records and I told him if we just took a lot of those tracks, I'd have another CD," she says. "What I love best though is that he allowed me to do my specific performance of 'Glitter and Be Gay," which I do in concert. I didn't want be trapped having to sing it in the way other people have. He also asked me to do 'This Is My Beloved,' and at first I hated it -- I'd never sung it before -- but when we did another take, I agreed it was really something."

Meanwhile, Noll will be singing live after Ace closes, including a bunch of symphony concerts and with the New York Pops salute at Carnegie Hall on October 17 as part of the Bernstein: The Best of All Possible Worlds celebration. "I thought they hired me to sing 'Glitter,' but I'm not doing it," she says. "We went through tons of stuff, and instead we chose a really cool version of 'I Can Cook Too,' with a lot of scatting, and some other songs. I think it will be a lot of fun."

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