'Motown' Star Hears From The Source: Berry Gordy

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Talk about theater vérité.

The single-monikered Trenyce was auditioning last year in front of Berry Gordy for the role of Diana Ross for the touring production of Motown the Musical, which plays Waterbury’s Palace Theater May 11-13.

“And Mr. Gordy stepped into the scene — as the character based on himself,” says the native of Memphis, Tennessee, and a finalist on American Idol’s second season. “He told me he wanted me [as Diana] to really fight him in the scene, adding, ‘And this is when I found out I was in love with her. It was her telling me “no” and the way she told it.’ We did that scene several different ways until he felt it was that magnetic moment that he could go back in his mind and say, ‘Yes, that’s the way it happened.’ It’s so beautiful to have him be a part of the production because it makes everything more honest.”

Trenyce says she and Ross are alike in that they are both inspired by their audiences. “One of the most famous moments was when she did her concert in Central Park, and as it rained and rained she continued to sing. From that moment she had a fan base that was not going to go anywhere because she didn’t go anywhere.”