Broadway’s Jarrod Spector and Kelli Barrett share their charming love story

The love story of how Jarrod Spector and Kelli Barrett went from being coworkers and friends to husband and wife is a real-life version of the movie “When Harry Met Sally.”

In relationships with other people at the start, they became friends first and didn’t embark on a relationship until 18 months later.

Married in 2014, the two actors will perform a live show — marking their first time performing on stage since last February — at Ridgefield Playhouse on Valentine’s Day at 4 and 8 p.m.

The show will be socially distanced, but live streaming tickets are also available. The couple will perform love songs and share stories about their relationship.

Spector was Tony-nominated for his role in “Beautiful: the Carole King Musical” and played Frankie Valli for a record 1,500 performances in Broadway’s “Jersey Boys.”

Barrett inaugurated the role of Lara Guishar in Broadway’s “Doctor Zhivago” and has starred in Broadway’s “Wicked,” “Baby It’s You!” and “The Royal Family.”

Andrea Valluzzo caught up with the talented couple ahead of their Ridgefield show.

Andrea Valluzo: This show feels particularly notable — it’s your first live show in a year and it’s the first live show for the Playhouse in 2021.

Jarrod Spector: We are oddly breaking new ground. Who knew doing a show live in person would be such a novel thing?

AV: What is most meaningful to you about it?

Kelli Barrett: Because it’s Valentine’s Day, our show will talk about our relationship, our love for each other, how our friendship developed into our marriage and what it is like to be a working couple.

AV: The show celebrates Valentine’s Day. What are some of the love songs you will sing?

JS: We actually have this great medley of love songs that we do: “Chapel of Love,” “Be My Baby,” “Some Kind of Wonderful,” “Dedicated to the One I Love,” “Arthur’s Theme” and “How Sweet It Is.”

We lovingly refer to that medley as the divorce medley because despite the romantic tone of every single one of them, those were actually written and performed by couples whose marriages ended up in divorce.

We sort of use those as sort of a cautionary tale that no matter what it sounds like on the outside, things could go bad, but all those love songs are so great.

AV: What can the audience expect at this show?

KB: The tenet of the show is all these little fortuitous, fated moments that are very coincidental that we share in our separate lives and then just sort of silly things.

Like what was supposed to be my first big Broadway show tune — I was going to sing on a Broadway stage — ended up getting canned, and [I was] put in Jarrod’s musical “Beautiful” later and we were not even together then.

AV: Without giving away a big spoiler, what is one story that you will share on stage?

KB: We definitely address Jarrod instantly falling in love with me and my instantly falling with his voice. It’s just funny how that happened very much like “When Harry Met Sally.”

It’s not always that same exact moment for two people [when falling in love]. We definitely start the show off with humor in that way to show how two separate people can come to something very differently.

AV: How did your relationship grow?

JS: I had been forewarned of Kelli’s charms, but then she walked in the room and they were grossly underestimated. I fell for Kelli immediately, but we didn’t become friends right away because I was dumbstruck. Eventually we did become friends.

KB: Our friendship developed over years. We would play Words with Friends and he was really funny. He was there for me in times when I needed someone. For him, it was more instantaneous. For me, it took a long time and I fell in love with who he was first, before the romance settled in.

AV: What is the key to your marriage?

KB: One of the things Jarrod and I have really committed to in our relationship is communication. We’re still friends first. We talk about everything and we are very open with each other.

We have the kind of relationship where I can say to him, ‘Hey, I need to be alone right now’ and he’s not going to take offense to that, and vice versa.

We always say, ‘How’s the ticker?’ We are always checking in with each other’s hearts. Everything you say in a marriage sort of echoes forever, so we want to make sure the things we say are loving and compassionate and the right kind of echo.

JS: That is not to say we never have a disagreement, but to Kelli’s point, we talk everything out.

One of the fun things about doing shows like this is we get couples coming up to us afterwards who have been together 10, 25, 30 years and we get to ask them what is their secret ... and almost always the answer is humor.

I can say without question Kelli is the person who makes me laugh the most in my life.

Jarrod Spector and Kelli Barrett will perform their “Funny How It Happens: A Valentine's Day Celebration” show at Ridgefield Playhouse on Feb. 14 at 4 and 8 p.m. For more information, visit

Andrea Valluzzo is a freelance writer.