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Cristin Milioti: She Came From New Jersey

Filed by KOSU News in Art & Life.
January 11, 2013

They say you can take the Girl out of Jersey, but you can’t…you know how the rest goes. Lucky for Cherry Hill, NJ, native Cristin Milioti, she’s full of hometown pride. But you wouldn’t surmise Milioti’s Garden State roots from watching her in her recent Tony-nominated role as “Girl” in the Broadway musical Once, in which she speaks and sings entirely in a convincing Czech accent.

Milioti joins host Ophira Eisenberg on the Ask Me Another stage to discuss her love of and ease with dialects (she once played West Side Story’s Maria as a Russian), as well as the whirlwind ascension of Once. Milioti explains how she learned to play the piano in ten days in order to nail the role of “Girl”, and why she still hasn’t seen the original film.

That hometown pride comes in handy for Milioti’s Ask Me Another Challenge, when we pit her against a fellow Jersey-bred contestant in a game about the fascinating people and ingenious inventions that were birthed by the state. Who will boast ultimate N.J. knowledge? This competition heats up quicker than the Seaside Heights boardwalk on a summer’s day.

About Cristin Milioti

Cristin Milioti was nominated for a 2012 Tony Award for her role of “Girl” in the musical Once. The character is a Czech singer and pianist, based on Marketa Irglová’s role in the 2006 film of the same name.

While Once marks Milioti’s musical debut, she has performed in The Lieutenant of Inishmore and Coram Boy on Broadway, as well as a number of off-Broadway shows, including The Little Foxes, Stunning, That Face, The Heart Is a Lonely Hunter, The Retributionists and Crooked. Milioti has appeared on 30 Rock as the baby-voiced comedienne Abby Flynn in the episode “TGS Hates Women,” on The Sopranos as the daughter of a Mafia boss and as Mike Birbiglia’s sister Janet in the 2012 film Sleepwalk With Me.

In the video below, watch Milioti and her Once co-star Steve Kazee perform “Falling Slowly.” [Copyright 2013 National Public Radio]

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