Adam is one of my favorite people in New York so today is seriously such a treat to have him on FFB! I remember the day I went into Core Rhythm Fitness (which is how Adam and I first met!) and being told he was in final callbacks for Aladdin!! Witnessing Adam follow his dream, his heart, and his passions over the last year has been incredible… one of the most influential examples that has crossed my path. From the deepest part of one’s soul to the energy they share with every single person they interact with, I can’t imagine a better person than Adam to represent everything it means to be Fit for Broadway!
NOTE FROM ADAM: Hello FFB family! Adam Hyndman here. I am a performer, writer, and wellness coach living in Brooklyn. I am originally from New Jersey and attended Princeton University where I studied anthropology (however performing and training in the arts eventually became my main focus while on campus). I moved to NYC after graduating and some of my favorite credits have included being on NBC’s The Sing Off, playing Seth/Shem in Children of Eden at The Kennedy Center while working with Stephen Schwartz, dance captaining an incredibly hilarious musical parody of 50 Shades of Grey on a national tour, and originating a new Christmas musical tradition (The First Noel) at the world famous Apollo Theater.
Q: Adam, this is next level making my dreams come true to have you on the blog. You have been such an inspiration for me the last year and this Broadway path was laid so perfectly for you! Can we start from the beginning… What was your journey to Broadway?
A: What a question! I think the journey truly set its sights on Broadway in college. I had been an athlete my entire life and for so long that was my main focus. I was running track on the varsity team at Princeton (so was traveling all across the country every other weekend for meets), while also trying to do a million other things on campus including singing in an a cappella group and performing in student musicals. I got injured toward the end of the my sophomore year and realize that there was no time left to rehab this injury and continue all of my other extra curriculars. I took the summer to contemplate where I wanted to be in 5 or 10 years down the line and in my heart of hearts the dream was to be on Broadway. When I returned to college in the fall, I quit the track team and jumped into the arts full throttle; taking advantage of every opportunity I could to develop my craft. By the end of my senior year I knew I wanted to pursue the arts professionally.
Over time I started getting work, building my credits up, and making connections. It’s remarkable how things sometimes just fit and fall into alignment when they are supposed to (you truly never know what’s going on in the background). I must have auditioned for Aladdin a dozen times and would always get great feedback at callback after callback, but it never worked out. Last summer I went in again for the national tour at the same time that I was finishing a long interview process to becoming a counselor with The Trevor Project. (I was torn because the counselor position required a 1 year long commitment in NYC, yet the tour would prevent me from accepting it if I were selected). After my 5th callback for Aladdin I felt like I completely nailed it and had finally booked the show — something definitely shifted. However a week later I heard back from casting and found out that the tour was not for me. The next day I was given an offer for the counselor position with The Trevor Project. I immediately said yes because I knew in my spirit that whatever would be coming my way (acting wise) would be something that would keep me in New York. Fast forward to this past winter. I get a call to come in to audition for Aladdin again, but this time for the Broadway production! Within a week I was given an offer to join the company.
Each major step along the way has been an example of being bold and daring, and continuing to put myself out there. When one opportunity came I would do my very best to be diligent, kind, and look for how I could bring joy and gratitude to the experience. I began to realize that was what my purpose was leading me toward and where I was most fulfilled; building connection and finding community wherever I go.
Q: How have health and fitness been intertwined into your journey as a performer?
A: My wellness has certainly been an anchor of my experience as a performer; being healthy and fit is a necessity to be able to perform in such a rigorous and athletic show like Aladdin 8 times a week. I must be conscious of how I am taking care of my body (as well as my mind and spirit) all the time, because I feel the little changes from day to day immensely when I’m on stage demanding the most from myself every night.
Health and fitness mean a great deal because it is important for me to ground myself in the truth that above anything, and beyond being a performer, I am a human being blessed with one life and one body to work out this experience– therefore I have a responsibility to be a good steward of this body and make my holistic wellness intwined in every aspect of my life.
My wellness is an opportunity that I get to work on and invest in everyday, and it is something that I can use as an instrument and tool to activate intentions for all areas of my life (patience, dedication, proactivity, etc). That is to say, I believe that what we can create in ONE area of our life can also act as evidence for what we can create in ANY area of our life. Making a commitment to my wellness and putting the work in everyday is a chance for me to cultivate a healthy practice that I can choose to translate into other realms. That’s what resonates for me in making fitness a part of my lifestyle.
Q: Your ability to not only hold yourself in alignment but support other people’s journey is so inspiring. You’re currently working with The Trevor Project… can you tell us a little bit about their mission and your work?
A: The Trevor Project is a remarkable organization and the nation’s largest not-for-profit specifically serving LGBT youth. We offer resources for young people struggling and in crisis to get the support, counseling, and aid they need (24/7). It is so rewarding for me to be able to be a part of their mission that proves and affirms that, regardless of the situation, no one is alone.
Q: We definitely had a moment with the You Are Enough pullover… what does You Are Enough mean to you, your mission with TP and your work with CRF?
A: When I say those words, I can’t help but smile. Our world and our culture has removed and desensitized us from the profound impact of simple affirmation (for self and other). When we can acknowledge the truth in each of us… and the fact that our truth is enough (that we are worthy) then we can create belonging. In a world of belonging we can start healing. So within those words much of my mission in the work I do (on Broadway, in my writing, in my coaching, with the Trevor Project and with Core Rhythm Fitness) and my purpose in life is contained: the power of edification and rectification; creating spaces where people feel inspired and safe to be their best self. That is why I titled the book I self-published: “Perfectly Imperfect” — because that is what we are… and that is more than enough.
Q: You take many people, including myself, through their Nutrition Narrative in Core Rhythm Fitness too! So many people don’t know where to start on their journey with food… what’s your food philosophy? And maybe top tips when first starting out?
A: Yes! It’s such a privilege to partner with people in wellness and especially nutrition because it is something that we are investing in everyday — therefore there are so many opportunities for us to develop a lifestyle that serves us!
Nutrition is a constant journey and there is so much to discover, but for brevity sake, my philosophy is all about eating on your body type. Your body does one of two things with food– it burns it and uses it for energy, or it stores it and converts it into fat. So eating on your body type means identifying the foods that work for you (as fuel) and eating abundantly (plenty and often to keep your metabolism running and providing you with energy). At Core Rhythm Fitness (where I am the Director of Operations and our lead nutrition coach) we use urinalysis to identify what is working and what is not for our clients. But the best place for ANYONE to start is to be conscious of eating whole foods where you know exactly what you are consuming and aim to be eating it in its most simple form (so stay away from processed foods). The other most useful place to start is to limit sugar intake — we get way too much of it from too many sources.
Q: I’ve had a recent request from readers who are interested in knowing about your survival jobs pre-Broadway? You dove into work that really fulfilled you while you were working towards your dream… any advice for performers who are looking for part time work while auditioning?
A: I’ve done many different things. The biggest lesson I’ve learned is to be sure to find work that is supportive of your dreams. That could be in other capacities in the arts, or that can look like finding an employer that gives you the flexibility or understanding for what you need to also be open when opportunity meets you. If you are pursuing the arts professionally, always share that you are an artist with a prospective employer. How they respond to your honesty and communication will ultimately be a filter to whether that environment will be supportive or not.
Q: How does nutrition play a role in feeling your best for each Broadway show?
A: It’s 80% of the entire story. Point. Blank. Period. How you show up with your nutrition is the opportunity to create sustainable wellness. If we are talking about being ready and prepared to use your body and craft at top performance level; how you are investing in it internally will dictate everything.
Q: Can we play “What I Ate Yesterday”?
A: I Ate..
- Breakfast: (Must be hearty and protein filled to start my metabolism so I have energy throughout my day) A veggie omelette with a green smoothie or a kombucha
- Lunch: A chopped kale and spinach salad with grilled chicken and tons of raw veggies and some ancient grains (or quinoa or farro)
- Dinner: A filet of fish with a medley of sautéed and roasted vegetables
- Snacks: (super important for me between meals to sustain my energy)
- cottage cheese with chia seeds, almond butter, and blueberries
- roasted/dried seaweed
- half an avocado with pepper
- a handful of dried berries, nuts, and seeds.
- sliced jicama or fennel
- banana nice cream
Q: Who or what inspires you?
A: I am inspired by so much in this world; especially folk that dare to be vulnerable and share it. I think about figures like James Baldwin, Joni Mitchell, Stevie Wonder, India Arie, Maya Angelou etc, all of whom I admire profoundly. Thinking about these public figures then leads me to a place of awe for the wonderful friends, mentors, family, and colleagues that are in my everyday life and whom I have the privilege of being inspired by in the flesh day in and day out.
Q: What’s your advice for aspiring performers who have their sights set on Broadway?
A: Surround yourself with a strong community. Being accountable to others and working in contribution to something greater than oneself has proven priceless in discovering the artist I truly want to be.