We talk to the award-winning singer about what’s hot in musical theatre today, and ask if race is still an issue.

You’ve done musicals, theatre, even opera – did you have a first love?

Musical theatre, definitely! I grew up in Fresno California and about age nine I started doing musicals there. That’s when I started loving it. I’ve been doing it ever since. The only time I’ve ever stopped was when I went to Juilliard and studied classical music there.

So what made you choose to go to Juilliard if you were really into musicals?

It was really ignorance on my part. I was so blown away that Juilliard had accepted me I thought, “well, I’d better go.” So I went thinking, “surely I’ll be able to stick to acting classes and dance classes”, but that really wasn’t what the programme was designed for. It was frustrating for me and it was frustrating for my teachers too, because I was definitely not in the right spot, but the one good thing is that I ended up learning that I did have a classical voice and I was able to cultivate that. It ended up being the right path, but at...