Lauren Weinberg is lucky.
Some people go their whole lives without finding their passion, but the St. Louis, Mo., native discovered hers as a little girl.
At a drama camp, she took the stage with a bunch of other youngsters for a medley of tunes like Puttin’ on the Ritz.
She froze up — but she wasn’t deterred.
Never miss a local story.
“Mom said, ‘I’m so sorry. You don’t ever have to do that again,’ ” Weinberg said. “But I told her, ‘No, I have to do it again.’ ”
And she did.
Weinberg now is a stage veteran. She’s on tour with Big League Productions’ Guys and Dolls, which stops April 22 at Windermere Theatre in the Toyota Center in Kennewick.
Showtime is 7:30 p.m.
The show debuted on Broadway in 1950, winning five Tony Awards, including best musical. It cleaned up at the Tonys again 42 years later, winning four awards, including for best musical revival.
It centers on gambler Sky Masterson and craps game manager Nathan Detroit, and the women they love. Weinberg plays Miss Adelaide, a showgirl who’s been engaged to Nathan for 14 years.
“She is playful and sassy and never ever boring,” Weinberg said. “You can’t really ignore her when she comes on stage.”
Adelaide brings laughs, but also real moments. Her relationship with Nathan “is the most real relationship on stage. It’s funny and it’s flawed, and it’s truly a story of unconditional love,” Weinberg said.
The musical itself is a fun ride — a spectacle with heart, the actress said, highlighting the number Sit Down, You’re Rockin’ the Boat as a particular crowd pleaser. “I think everyone is going to have a good time. No matter where they look, they’ll be entertained,” she said.
Weinberg graduated with a bachelor of fine arts in musical theater from Penn State in 2009, and she moved to New York shortly after.
Her success hasn’t been overnight. “When I first moved to (the city), I couldn’t book a role for the life of me,” Weinberg said.
But, again, she wasn’t deterred.
Playing Miss Adelaide in the tour has been “one of the most fun experiences I’ve ever had,” Weinberg said. The tour wraps at the end of May, and Weinberg will head to Naples, N.Y., to perform in some summer stock shows. Then the Guys and Dolls gang will reunite in August for two weeks of performances in Singapore.
After that, it will be back to auditions.
And that’s OK with Weinberg. She’s following her passion.
Singing, acting — it’s a way to be heard, to get a message across. “People bought a ticket, they’re sitting down and are listening to what you have to say. Even a comedy like Guys and Dolls — there are moments of love, awakening and realization,” Weinberg said.
“You’re helping (people) escape from their lives for a moment. It’s a magical thing. There’s really nothing like it,” she said.
Tickets start at $27.
They’re available at the Toyota Center box office, at www.ticketmaster.com and by calling 800-745-3000. Discounts are available for groups of 10 or more by calling 509-737-3722. Tickets purchased through the box office avoid service fees.