Visiting new cities every couple of weeks is one of the perks of performing in the national tour of the Tony Award-winning musical “The Book of Mormon.” Kevin Clay has played the lead role of Elder Price for nearly two years, and will perform in Boston for the first time when the tour stops at the Opera House Aug. 14 for a two-week run. “I’m really excited. I want to catch a [Red] Sox game on my day off,” the Centreville, Va., resident said. “I would also like to do the Freedom Trail. Being from Virginia, we have a lot of history with places like Jamestown and Williamsburg, so I’m looking forward to seeing what Boston [has to offer].” We caught up with Clay, 25, who called the musical comedy “the perfect combination of an amazingly fun night at the theater and a perfect conversation starter after the show,” to talk about all things travel.
Favorite vacation destination? Antibes, France. My college roommate and I traveled to a few places in Europe last year, and this little town ended up taking the cake for me. It is a small, winding-alleyways kind of town right on the Mediterranean, which I had never touched a toe in until then. Also, I had the best piece of roast beef there that I have ever eaten in my life — in case there are any meat lovers reading.
Favorite food or drink while vacationing? I don’t drink a lot of alcohol because of my job, but when I’m vacationing, I enjoy white wine. If I’m with my brother and brother-in-law, we’ll drink scotch together. My brother-in-law always has some new one for me to try. When it comes to food, pasta is my favorite in general, so I guess I need to vacation to Italy sometime soon.
Where would you like to travel to but haven’t? I suppose having just mentioned Italy, that is certainly on my list. I also have a desire to visit Madrid because I now have some cousins who live there. But mostly, I am really itching to travel to countries in Asia: Japan, India, China, and Thailand are all on my list.
One item you can’t leave home without when traveling? An obvious answer is my phone, mostly for the sake of using it to find different things and stay in contact with anyone I am traveling with. Or if I’m in a foreign country, downloading a language on the Google translate app ahead of time is super helpful to always have even without the Internet. I’m a big backpack guy as well, so I always have it slung on my back with a few books, chargers, sunscreen [since] I burn instantaneously, and my iPad to write with.
Aisle or window? Window. Firstly, because I love a good view, and secondly, to have the wall of the plane to lean my head against. I fly a lot for work anyway and I’ve found that both of those outweigh a bit of aisle legroom.
Favorite childhood travel memory? My family didn’t travel a whole lot when I was growing up, but we flew out to visit cousins in Colorado when I was in sixth grade. My dad wouldn’t rest until we took a family trip to a dude ranch, and I’m glad we did because it’s the only time I’ve ever ridden a horse.
Guilty pleasure when traveling? Favorite guilty pleasure, huh? I suppose my pleasure doesn’t come from doing something, but rather from not doing something. That something is exercising. I do enjoy working out on the road to pass the time and keep me healthy, but it is so nice to not think about it at all for a week or two here and there. I’m lazy by nature I suppose.
Best travel tip? Seek out something local wherever you go. Being in a different city every week, of course sometimes it is easier to hit up a Panera again for comfort, but I am the type of person who finds a local place — usually some sort of diner — and go every single day. Nothing feels better to me when traveling than being remembered by someone behind the counter. For close to three years now, I’ve never had a permanent home to make my own, so becoming a regular — even if only for a week — makes me feel at home. So wherever you go, find somewhere you can’t find anywhere else.