Jenna Ushkowitz: Back Where She Belongs


Jenna Ushkowitz is no stranger to show business. You might recognize her as Tina Cohen-Chang from the hit television show Glee, or maybe you saw her when she joined the cast of the original production of Spring Awakening on Broadway. (And major props to you if you caught her as a royal child in the 1996 revival of The King and I.)

But these days, Ushkowitz is the newest addition toto Broadway’s leading trio in Waitress as Dawn, who Ushkowitz describes as “the introverted oddball of the three.”

“There’s really nothing like it,” she says of being back onstage. “I think TV opened up a lot of doors for me. I love it all, I really do, but I think the stage is the best—the instant gratification, the energy of the audience, telling a story from A to B every single night and being able to do it again and again and again, there’s something really creatively really fulfilling about it.”

Broadway Style Guide had the chance to chat with Ushkowitz about her style on and off the red carpet, her pre-show rituals, and a few of her upcoming projects.

New York Comfort
When it comes to personal style, comfort is key. “But I still want to look cute!” she says. “Right now I’m into rompers. Little skirts with lace tops are cute. I like prints but not too many.” You can also tell she’s from New York. “My whole closet is basically black, white, and grey.” Also, in New York, she says, you have to think about your whole day. “People in New York are much more comfortable because you have to walk everywhere. In L.A. I would wear an outfit in the morning and then go home and change and then go home and change for dinner.”


As for her beauty routine, she keeps it simple: Drink water, moisturize, and wash your face. “I don’t like to wear a lot of makeup,” she says. “My favorite time is the summer because it’s an excuse not to wear makeup at all and put your hair up. That’s the kind of girl I am.”

Stepping Out on the Town
When Ushkowitz gets ready for the red carpet, she works with stylist Amanda Reno to decide between a cocktail and black tie look. “I try to go off of what I wore last,” she says. “So, we did black and we did cocktail, so let’s go with a really cute color blocked romper. I believe that red carpets still have to be a reflection of who you are.”

She admires people who take fashion risks. “I’m not going to lie,” she says with a laugh, “Kristen Stewart wears Converse on the red carpet. I wish I could do that. I’m not brave enough to do that, but I wish I could. I like people who take risks either way. I like Gaga. If that’s who they are and how they express themselves in all those different ways, I love that!”