To make it work, Dela Cruz pretends
he’s talking to his nephew.
In the studio, Dela Cruz doesn’t
hear the dialogue or sound effects
that viewers experience. His assistant
makes noises and reads lines to give
Dela Cruz a sense of timing. The choreography also is complicated. “You
can’t just walk anywhere—you might
walk through a table,” he says.
Growing up in New Milford, Dela
Cruz was a big Blue’s Clues fan. He
credits the catchy “Mail Song” with
spurring his interest in singing.
During his junior year at New Mil-
ford High School, Dela Cruz starred
in a musical called The Bagel Factory.
Rob McClure, a New Milford native
and Tony-nominated actor, wrote and
directed the production based on his
experiences working for the bagel
shop in town. The role earned Dela
Cruz a Paper Mill Playhouse Rising
Star Award nomination. He didn’t
win, but still received a scholarship
to participate in the theater’s Summer Conservancy at Montclair State
University. That’s when Dela Cruz
started seriously considering acting as
“It was all kind of meant to be and
crazy how it happened,” he says. “Had
those dots not connected, I probably
wouldn’t be here today.” Dela Cruz
earned a BFA in musical theater from
MSU in 2011 and has been acting
since. Until now, the highlight was a
four-year stint as an understudy in the
original cast of Aladdin on Broadway—
including three months when he took
over the lead role.
The transition to television has
Blue’s Clues & You except that Blue will
been a challenge, but the experience as
a stage performer is a help. “All I had
to do,” says Dela Cruz, “was just trust
my timing and instincts.”
Few details are available about
be back, as well as a “different” version
of the Handy Dandy Notebook. Dela
Cruz will still elicit the viewers’ help.
“That’s the biggest part of Blue’s
Clues for me—an adult is asking for a
kid’s help,” says Dela Cruz. “If we promote this idea of ‘it’s okay to not know
the answer,’ I think that would be a
really amazing and beautiful thing.”
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