Susan Louise O'Connor gets her spotlight

susan-oconnor1How long does it take until a well-regarded downtown performer can make a living wage in a Broadway show? Oh, only eight years. That's what we can conclude from the happy, if long-overdue, news that Susan Louise O'Connor will be joining the revival of Blithe Spirit, Nol Coward's supernatural romp. O'Connor has been a TONY favorite ever since she played a gamine (possibly ghostly) young woman in Daniel MacIvor's Never Swim Alone waaaay back in 2000. Since then, she's been a fixture on the downtown scene, wowing us with her intense and nervy performances. Why did it take so long for casting agents to get her a decent gig? Who knows what combination of bad taste, ignorance and politicking shapes most casting decisions. After the jump, we humbly submit TONY's fave thespians for career advancement.

Heidi Schreckscheck
She can do comedy or stylized drama (think Ruth from The Homecoming). Has worked with Anne Washburn, Theatre of a Two-Headed Calf. Smart, elegant, bewitching.

Gibson Frazierfrazier
This classy guy we could see in period dramas or classics, from Shakespeare to Odets. Elegant, well-spoken, good-looking, Gibson can probably sing and dance, too.

April Matthismatthis
Smoldering yet impish, Matthis has made crystalline sense of Sheila Callaghan's surrealist writing, and she shone in Elevator Repair Service's The Sound and the Fury interpretation. All that and she can handle naturalism.
Kristen Siehsieh
This young blond spitfire has been the best thing about shows by her company, the TEAM. There's a zany earnestness about Sieh's approach, which is comical but touching at the same time.
Jay Smithjaysmith
One of our favorites, and a criminally underused actor. He looks perfectly ordinary, like a harmless accountant or dentist, but Smith has a wickedly dry way with words and a focus that can unnerve you. He's brilliant in Richard Foreman's wackadoo world, and we'd love to see him tackle Pinter or Mamet.