Galavant’s Timothy Omundson Talks King Richard, Lassie, And Song

(c) ABC Studios
(c) ABC Studios

If you’ve been around on Twitter for the last couple of Sunday nights, and you’ve had at least one eye on my Tweets (@starduster360), it will not have escaped your notice that I LOVE the show Galavant.

In advance of the Season 2 premiere I positively gushed about it here. I live tweet during the back-to-back episodes and generally enjoy every single second of this show. It is ridiculous. It is clever. It is kooky. It is funny. It is anachronistic. It is BRILLIANTLY cast, and Timothy Omundson is not only a major player in this show, but his King Richard is just wonderful. And to think, he was almost not cast at all.

I have a pretty decent imagination, but I cannot see anyone else in this role. The chemistry he and Joshua Sasse (Galavant) have is magic, and just this season alone, his adorably awkward scenes with Clare Foster (Roberta) are equally so. Omundson IS the man, so to read that it took him five months to land this role after it had been dangled in front of a “big British movie star” (and then a backup one) came as a complete surprise to me.

After the initial audition (which counts as one of the best in his career), he had the show’s creator Dan Fogelman in his corner, but there were quite a few more people to convince between the first audition and getting ‘the’ phone call.

From Tumblr
From Tumblr

Also: WHO could those other people possibly have been considering????

This entire interview was such fun to read (here in its entirety at TVLand) and covered quite a bit of ground. Remember when he was Lassie on Psych (which sadly only ran sporadically here in the Lower Mainland of British Columbia, where the show was filmed!) and they did a musical episode?

That apparently was the spark – or rather the rekindling of one – for musical theatre. I can relate in the most teensy tiny of ways – I did an extra year of high school just to be in another one of our musicals (Anything Goes, as I recall).

Omundson’s love for musical theatre also began there, but then came drama school, and amongst his many many varied roles, the singing thing didn’t pop up much: Judging Amy (he remembers doing two Sinatra songs – I don’t but I only watched the show) and then after seven years on Psych, came the episode Psych: The Musical (complete with a proper studio soundtrack) and when the prospect of Galavant came along, he got serious about little things like vocal technique.

Psych castmate, who also happens to be an experienced Broadway performer, Dulé Hill hooked him up with a vocal coach and while the audition process wore on, Omundson worked on his technique and impressed the right people at the last one and here we are today, a few days before the final episodes of the second season air, which had better not be the final episodes ever.

Omundson is in agreement, he even says, “It would just be a damn shame if I never got to play this guy again.” And even without ABC’s permission slip to continue (yet), the creative team is working on ideas for a third season, even perhaps switching up the relationships again: Season 1 it was Richard and Gareth and Madalena on one side and Galavant and Isabella and Sid. In Season 2, we switch and branch out a bit: Gareth and Madalena and Sid, Isabella is in captivity for 3/4 of the season, and Richard and Gal have the bromance.

(c) ABC Studios
(c) ABC Studios

There are a few rough patches for the budding bromance at the beginning of Season 2. It’s a bit of a shock going from someone whose every whim is catered to in his insular castle/kingdom, to having virtually nothing, not even his crown – and did he ever whinge!

(c) ABC Studios
(c) ABC Studios

Right, I digress, back to the interview: he dishes a bit on what’s coming up: Tad Cooper, some great music including one in which Richard has a conversation in song with his inner child, Roberta MAY return, a wicked catfight between Isabella (who’s in training to be more Warrior Princess-like as she now leads the army) and Madalena (who has embraced the dark magic of D’DEW and whose war planner mistakenly sent out invitations to the war to her nemesis: Isabella), and the nearly useless zombie army that represent the majority of Isabella and Gal and Richard’s troops (they’re not all in charge, are they?).   

As much silly delight we viewers take in Galavant, one should not forget: these are people working very hard in front of the camera and behind it to get the balance right: it’s the true professionals who make it look so easy. Omundson credits the showrunners John Hoberg and Kat Likkel “with threading that needle between what was our show, which was this silly, wonderful thing, yet have heart, without it ever going saccharine or too over the top.” – and they were there to do that, every single day. For his own experience, Omundson says “this season it has given me some of the most emotional and deep work I’ve ever had to do”, which must be so gratifying to hear for the creative team. 

We bid farewell to Galavant‘s second season this Sunday, January 31 on ABC. Be there – or be on Twitter, because you know that’s where you’ll find me.

 

Sigrid is on

Sigrid Bernhoerster

Contributor at Merry Band of Awesome
Sigrid is a BA graduate of UBC where she double majored in English Literature and Art History. She gets distracted from continuing her MA with the University of Nottingham by music, theatre (Bard on the Beach and NT Live in particular), TV and film, and a good bit of the pop culture that goes along with it, and by writing about most of the above. Social media is an outlet, an opportunity, and an inspiration.
Sigrid Bernhoerster
Sigrid is on
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