The animated American classic "Scooby-Doo" with the medling, mystery-solving gang of teenagers and their talking great dane comes to life in "Scooby-Doo Live! Musical Mysteries."
The cartoon originated in 1969 and is still in production today, a staple in children’s animated television. There may be some superpowers at work aiding the staying power of Scooby and the gang all these years, but whatever has been keeping audiences captivated is one mystery that doesn’t need solving.
Folio Weekly spoke to Cody Collier, a Springfield, Mo., native who plays Scooby-Doo, by phone about his experience on tour.
Folio Weekly: How long have you been performing and perfecting your craft?
Cody Collier: I was really shy as a child all the way up and through middle school, and it wasn’t until high school that I started doing these school plays. Then, it branched out to community theater and stuff like that, and then after graduation I moved to New York to study it — The New York Film Academy acting for film conservatory — and I decided to take dance classes and voice classes and stuff on the side while studying acting in New York for the past year. And after graduating there, I went to the Boston Conservatory and studied musical theater just to get back in the groove of singing and dancing, because I had been acting all year long. And then after I got back to New York, I auditioned for "Scooby-Doo." I’ve been at it for a short amount of time compared to other people.
F.W.: Did you think that you would land the role of Scooby when you auditioned?
C.C.: I wasn’t really sure because whenever I originally saw the casting notice for "Scooby-Doo," I submitted for Scooby, Shaggy and Fred — all three of the lead roles there, and I never heard anything back for a month or so. Then, I saw they had a second casting notice posted and they hadn’t found a Scooby-Doo yet. So I was like “OK, what the heck?” and I sent in again for it to see what happens. Then, from that I ended up getting a call back. They wanted me to do a dance and do Scooby stuff, and at the time I was auditioning, the creative team was overseas in Australia, and so I had to do everything by video. So I wasn’t able to see who I was competing against, or how many people I was competing against or anything. It was all a game of chance, really.
F.W.: How long has been "Scooby-Doo" been touring?
C.C.: It has been touring since the middle of January, and we end the tour in the middle of June. It’s about a six-month tour. It’s been all around the USA and some parts of Canada.
F.W.: What’s your favorite part about being on road with the tour?
C.C.: My favorite part has been the free vacation, getting to go around the country. Sometimes, we’ll be in like a really big city, and it’s cool sometimes to get to see the small towns of America and Canada, and it’s just really cool to see how different people around the world live.
F.W.: Has "Scooby-Doo" ever traveled near your hometown?
C.C.: In April, we went to my actual hometown, in Springfield, and it was quite a cool homecoming. We had a full house; we sold out. All of my family and friends got to see it, so it was cool.
F.W.: Do you have a favorite part of "Scooby-Doo"?
C.C.: OK, I have two favorite parts. One is when Shaggy and I do a rap together. Shaggy starts rapping, and I’m dancing with him, and we’re talking about our favorite kind of food. People say it’s kind of fun. My second favorite part is in the second act, it’s a song called “Round Every Corner,” and it’s the five mystery gang members and we’re running in, like, this club. You know in the original "Scooby-Doo" cartoon, right before every episode started there was this image of the mystery gang running while the credits were rolling? Yeah, so we’re imitating that image. It’s just cool to feel that historic image brought to life.
F.W.: Were you a fan of "Scooby-Doo" before?
C.C.: I grew up watching reruns of the show and stuff like that. Then, various new episodes that they would add throughout the years and stuff I would watch. I would have all the toys and play all the games, so I was always a big "Scooby-Doo" fan.