For Lorna Courtney of & Juliet, New York Has Always Been Her Stage
To pursue her dreams of stardom, Lorna Courtney didnt have to move far away from home. But she did have a lengthy daily commute. In her teens, she would take a bus and two trains (or three, depending on how long I wanted to walk) from her home in South Ozone Park, Queens, to the prestigious LaGuardia High School of Music & Art and Performing Arts on the Upper West Side in Manhattan.
Thats not even bad, because there were people that commuted from Staten Island, said Courtney, the young, Tony Award-nominated star of the new Broadway musical & Juliet.
The real distances, however, were not measured in miles. At LaGuardia, Courtney was thrown into a new world. I realized that I was with people who had free lunch and people whose parents had yachts, she said recently at a cafe near Union Square.
She made the most of her years studying voice at LaGuardia, performing in student productions and taking on the roles of Nina in In the Heights and Belle in Beauty and the Beast (in which her fellow Tony nominee Micaela Diamond played Mrs. Potts.)