The 'Modern Family' star tackles 40 characters in his one-man Broadway play
Credit: Joan Marcus

In his one-man show Fully Committed, Jesse Tyler Ferguson contains multitudes — 40 of them, to be exact. The play, about an overworked reservationist at a swanky Manhattan restaurant, has the Modern Family star serving up a feast of colorful characters, including histrionic celebrity customers and exhausted waitstaff. “It’s really fun to act up and play people who are kind of awful,” Ferguson says. “Bad behavior is timeless.”

The self-professed foodie researched his buffet of roles by visiting fine-dining restaurants around New York, but admits that preparing the comedy took more than a tasty tour. For months, script changes forced the actor to memorize new personalities. “I’ve really been juggling different versions of the play,” he says. “I’m usually mumbling the words of the play to myself, so I’ve been wandering around New York and Los Angeles looking like a crazy person.” Now, that’s commitment.

Fully Committed is now on Broadway for a limited, 13-week run. Check out the image above for a closer look at some of Ferguson’s cast of characters.

A version of this story originally appeared in Entertainment Weekly issue #1413, on newsstands now or available here.