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Michelle Williams let herself go after Cabaret

Actress Michelle Williams put herself “out to pasture” after her exhausting Broadway debut in hit musical Cabaret.
The Brokeback Mountain star graced the stage as Sally Bowles in the 2014 revival, but taking on the all-singing, all-dancing role, made famous by Liza Minnelli, left her feeling run down.
Michelle decided to take some time out from acting after stepping down from the production, and she confesses she indulged in all of her favourite foods – simply because she could.
“That took the stuffing out of me,” she recalled to The Associated Press of her Broadway debut. “I put myself out to pasture for a while after Cabaret. I ate a lot, literally, and ran lazily around fields because I was so tired.”
However, the mother-of-one is grateful for the experience, which she credits with preparing her to return to the Great White Way for a production of David Harrower’s Blackbird.
“I felt like I was pushed up against the edge of my ability every night (in Cabaret),” she continued. “But, as a result, I feel like I could feel my ability just inch up. So that’s been exciting to go back to work with some new ideas and abilities.”
The 35-year-old is now putting her talents to good use in the dramatic production alongside Jeff Daniels.
“It’s sort of like having a second child,” she mused. “I learned so much in those 10 months that it would be a shame to give up all of that hard-won knowledge.”
Michelle has made sure her busy Broadway schedule doesn’t interfere with her parental duties, and managed to convince producers to go dark on Sundays – a day traditionally considered a big box office draw – so she and 10-year-old Matilda “can have a real life”.
They have even assigned the girl, Michelle’s daughter with late ex Heath Ledger, her own dressing room at the Belasco Theatre, complete with a flat-screen TV and a disco ball hanging from the ceiling, so she can join mum at work.
However, young Matilda isn’t allowed anywhere near the stage, because the production centres on the issue of child abuse.
“She can’t see the play, be anywhere near the play, hear the play, listen to the play,” Michelle warned. “This is so she can come and hang out with mum, but with a lock on the door.”
Blackbird stars Jeff as an older man who is confronted by his one-time lover, a much younger woman he had had an illegal affair with 15 years prior. The production opens on Thursday (10Mar16).

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