EXCLUSIVE: 'First Date' Broadway Star Krysta Rodriguez on Romance & Show Business

One of my favorite parts about your character is she’s almost a little bit unlikeable in the beginning, she’s kind of abrasive and not into it, then you really get to know her (especially through her interactions with her sister). Do you relate to her at all?

I totally do. There’s a lot about Casey that is very different from me. What’s kind of funny, I have that tattoo I wear during the show, I wear it all the time. It stays on me all the time, it’s just easier to keep it on than take it off. I sort of feel that she’s become a little bit a part of me because of that. She’s always with me. People look at me and they associate me with that person. I look like I would be like Casey, but I’m not. So I’m even more her, encompassing her all the time. But no, I’m very much not the same, as in her abrasiveness. I do relate to her jadedness. I’m a New Yorker, I’ve been here for 11 years, I’ve seen it all. That wasn’t hard to draw. She walks into a date, she goes on them all the time, she has her men categorized, she knows what kind of drink for what kind of person she’s meeting. She’s got it all figured out. I think I’m that person who thinks they’ve got it all figured out, and could be better served if they open their eyes to new possibilities.

Since the show is about first dates, do you have any fun or memorable first date experiences?

You know, I get asked this question all the time but I really don’t. I don’t really, I’m not a serial dater. I’m definitely not Casey. I don’t go on first dates. I get to know people for months then go on a date with them. I don’t have any terrible war stories. But I’m happy, people come to see the show and say how relatable or awkward. I go oh god, thank god I haven’t had those experiences. I couldn’t imagine doing that all the time.

Do you have any fun stories that fans have shared with you?

We did have a contest for worst first dates. A lot of them involved vomit, someone gets sick on the date. The whole show came about because our three writers had such terrible dating experiences, some of these things are actual events that happened to them! But Austin, who wrote the book for the musical, had an instance where he had a full blown panic attack in the date. The ambulance had to come, he was in the car hyperventilating with a bag over his mouth waiting for the ambulance to come, on his first date with someone. So you know, it can be really nasty out there.

Continue reading on page 3 for what it's like to kiss Zachary Levi and the differences between First Date and In The Heights. >>

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About this author

Irina Gonzalez,

An NYC-based journalist, web editor, and food writer, she started her career with an internship at Latina magazine while receiving her bachelor’s at New York University. Her work has appeared in Time Out New York, MamasLatinas.com, FamilyCircle.com, TheFrisky.com, GoodHousekeeping.com, and more. When she’s not checking out the latest taco restaurant in New York City, scouring for the best tapas in Barcelona, or dreaming of visiting Alex Atala’s restaurant in Brazil, she’s blogging about her favorite recipes, healthy eating tips and maintaining her 100 pound weight loss on HealthyLatinFood.com. You can always find her on Twitter (@msirinagonzalez) & Instagram (@msirinagonzalez) talking about her latest delicious meal.

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