'Younger' star Sutton Foster talks filming Marie's Crisis scene, evolution of the show (Exclusive)

Fans were delighted during the season 6 premiere of "Younger" earlier this month when the show delivered an instantly-iconic musical moment featuring its musically talented cast.

In an effort to clear the air with Diana (Miriam Shor), Liza (Sutton Foster) and Kelsey (Hilary Duff) met her at the famed show tunes bar in the West Village, Marie's Crisis, where they subsequently all sang Dolly Parton's workplace hit, "9 to 5." 

 

 

During a recent sit-down with AOL's Gibson Johns, Foster opened up about the scene's natural incorporation into the episode's plot, which is why the Tony-winning performer thinks it ended up working so well.

"It’s been so wonderful, because people have responded so positively to it, but I think for us it really organic for our characters because it was totally plot-oriented bringing these three women together, so it was a fun way for them to infuse music into the show with a sense of humor, but also a purpose," she explained. "For me, I never want to feel like my character was just breaking into song."

Foster also said that it was the lengthiness of the scene's shoot that actually ended up working in its favor.

"We were in there for quite a long time, so we got sillier and sillier as it was going on," she told us. "Marie’s Crisis is really small -- it’s the size of this conference room -- so we were in there for probably about six hours, and it was freezing outside. We were trapped in there and all the cameras were handheld. It was so fun."

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NEW YORK, NY - JUNE 11: Actress Sutton Foster attends the 71st Annual Tony Awards at Radio City Music Hall on June 11, 2017 in New York City. (Photo by Jim Spellman/WireImage)
NEW YORK, NY - MAY 07: Debi Mazar and Sutton Foster attend 32nd Annual Lucille Lortel Awards at NYU Skirball Center on May 7, 2017 in New York City. (Photo by Walter McBride/FilmMagic)
NEW YORK, NY - JUNE 11: Sutton Foster and Gavin Creel attend the 2017 Tony Awards at Radio City Music Hall on June 11, 2017 in New York City. (Photo by Dimitrios Kambouris/Getty Images for Tony Awards Productions)
NEW YORK, NY - APRIL 26: Sutton Foster, Hilary Duff and Molly Bernard are seen filming 'Younger' on April 26, 2017 in New York, New York. (Photo by Alessio Botticelli/GC Images)
NEW YORK, NY - APRIL 02: Ted Griffin and Sutton Foster attend 'The Play That Goes Wrong' Broadway Opening Night at the Lyceum Theatre on April 2, 2017 in New York City. (Photo by J. Kempin/Getty Images)
NEW YORK, NY - FEBRUARY 07: Sutton Foster introduces the latest innovation from Amope GelActiv Insoles & Inserts at the ShoeLove Fashion Truck on February 7, 2017 in New York City. (Photo by Mike Coppola/Getty Images for Amope)
NEW YORK, NY - JANUARY 26: TV Land's 'Younger' Star Sutton Foster attends the Bronwen Smith of B Floral Hosts a Private Winter Wonderland Event at Studio Arte in NYC at Studio Arte on January 26, 2017 in New York City. (Photo by Dave Kotinsky/Getty Images for B Floral)
NEW YORK, NY - DECEMBER 04: Ted Griffin and Sutton Foster attend 'Dear Evan Hansen' opening at Music Box Theatre on December 4, 2016 in New York City. (Photo by Jenny Anderson/FilmMagic)
NEW YORK, NY - NOVEMBER 20: Sutton Foster attends the Opening Night Party for The New Group Production of 'Sweet Charity' at The Lindeman on November 20, 2016 in New York City. (Photo by Walter McBride/WireImage)
NEW YORK, NY - OCTOBER 17: Ted Griffin and Sutton Foster attend The 10th Annual Golden Heart Awards Celebration on October 17, 2016 in New York City. (Photo by Patrick McMullan/Patrick McMullan via Getty Images)
NEW YORK, NY - OCTOBER 10: (L-R) Actors Nico Tortorella, Miriam Shor, Molly Kate Bernard, Sutton Foster, Peter Hermann, executive producer/writer Dottie Dartland Zicklin and creator/ executive director Darren Star attend the PaleyFest New York 2016 screening of 'Younger' at The Paley Center for Media on October 10, 2016 in New York City. (Photo by Gilbert Carrasquillo/FilmMagic)
NEW YORK, NY - OCTOBER 17: Actress Sutton Foster attends the 2016 God's Love We Deliver Golden Heart Awards Dinner at Spring Studios on October 17, 2016 in New York City. (Photo by Ben Gabbe/Getty Images)
NEW YORK, NY - OCTOBER 10: Actress Sutton Foster attends the PaleyFest New York 2016 screening of 'Younger' at The Paley Center for Media on October 10, 2016 in New York City. (Photo by Gilbert Carrasquillo/FilmMagic)
Actress Sutton Foster attends the 'Younger' Season 3 & 'Impastor' Season 2 New York Premiere at Vandal on September 27, 2016 in New York City. / AFP / ANGELA WEISS (Photo credit should read ANGELA WEISS/AFP/Getty Images)
Actors Nico Tortorella and Sutton Foster attend the 'Younger' Season 3 and 'Impastor' Season 2 New York Premiere at Vandal on September 27, 2016 in New York City. / AFP / ANGELA WEISS (Photo credit should read ANGELA WEISS/AFP/Getty Images)
NEW YORK, NY - OCTOBER 04: Joel Perez and Sutton Foster pose at The New Group Theatre Production photo call for 'Sweet Charity' at Manhattan Movement & Arts Center on October 4, 2016 in New York City. (Photo by Bruce Glikas/Bruce Glikas/Getty Images)
THE CHEW - Sutton Foster and Alton Brown are guests on 'The Chew,' Tuesday, September 27, 2016. 'The Chew' airs MONDAY - FRIDAY (1-2pm, ET) on the ABC Television Network. (Photo by Jeff Neira/ABC via Getty Images) CLINTON KELLY, SUTTON FOSTER
NEW YORK, NY - SEPTEMBER 26: (L-R) Miriam Shor, Nico Tortorella, Molly Bernard, Peter Hermann, Hilary Duff, Debi Mazar, and Sutton Foster attend the Build Series to discuss 'Younger' at AOL HQ on September 26, 2016 in New York City. (Photo by Mike Pont/WireImage)
NEW YORK, NY - SEPTEMBER 26: Actress Sutton Foster visits the SiriusXM Studios on September 26, 2016 in New York City. (Photo by Cindy Ord/Getty Images)
NEW YORK, NY - SEPTEMBER 26: Sutton Foster attends the Build Series to discuss 'Younger' at AOL HQ on September 26, 2016 in New York City. (Photo by Mike Pont/WireImage)
WASHINGTON, DC - JULY 03: Tony Award winner and television star Sutton Foster poses for a photo with Tom Bergeron during A Capitol Fourth - Rehearsals at U.S. Capitol, West Lawn, on July 3, 2016 in Washington, DC. (Photo by Paul Morigi/Getty Images for Capital Concerts)
MATCH GAME - Airdate: June 26, 2016 - The iconic panel game show MATCH GAME, hosted by Golden Globe and Emmy Award-winning actor Alec Baldwin, returns to primetime airing on SUNDAYS beginning June 26th (10-11pm, ET) on the ABC Television Network. (Photo by Heidi Gutman/ABC via Getty Images) SUTTON FOSTER
NEW YORK, NY - APRIL 25: Sutton Foster attends The Actors Fund 2016 Gala at Marriott Marquis Times Square on April 25, 2016 in New York City. (Photo by Walter McBride/WireImage)
WEST HOLLYWOOD, CA - APRIL 15: Actors Miriam Shor, Peter Hermann and Sutton Foster of TV Lands Younger attend the 'Younger' FYC Screening & Reception at The London West Hollywood on April 15, 2016 in West Hollywood, California. (Photo by Tommaso Boddi/Getty Images for TV Land)
SANTA MONICA, CALIFORNIA - APRIL 10: Actress Sutton Foster attends the TV Land Icon Awards at The Barker Hanger on April 10, 2016 in Santa Monica, California. (Photo by Paul Archuleta/FilmMagic)
Miriam Shor, from left, Sutton Foster, Hilary Duff, Molly Bernard, and Debi Mazar attend TV Land's "Younger" Season 5 premiere party at Cecconi's on Monday, June 4, 2018, in New York. (Photo by Christopher Smith/Invision/AP)
Photo by: zz/John Nacion/STAR MAX/IPx 2018 6/2/18 Sutton Foster at the 11th Annual Veuve Clicquot Polo Classic held at Liberty State Park. (Jersey City, NJ)
Photo by: Victor Malafronte/STAR MAX/IPx 2017 6/27/17 Sutton Foster is seen in New York City.
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As for the song choice, the actress thought that there was no other hit that could've worked for the scene.

"[Creator] Darren [Starr] said that there was another song that they were talking about doing first, but '9 to 5' was just a perfect fit with three women bonding together," she explained. "It was completely work-oriented. Any other song wouldn’t have worked."

Another reason why the film was such a success is that it was completely indicative of the show that "Younger" has become: Thematically, it has become a show about female friendship in the workplace, which has truly elevated it throughout its run on TV Land.

"Originally, the show started off with the conceit of a 40 year old pretending to be in her 20s to be relevant in the workplace, and it’s evolved beyond that. Now it’s about women and how women survive as professionals and how they support each other," Foster said of the show's journey. "This season, we have these two characters: Quinn Laura Benanti’s character, who has one idea of how women can get ahead and it’s basically being out for yourself and not about camaraderie and then there's Kelsey’s idea, which is about friendship. But, now, Kelsey was being put in this position of power with the glass cliff: Is she being set up to fail? The conversations that we’re having on the show are expanding, and I think that’s why it’s continuing to live on. I always say the show’s about love, but every form of love. The female friendships and how they are navigating their lives on their own and with each other is the true heart of the show."

Those themes of friendships are ones that Foster has also placed emphasis on while raising her 2-year-old daughter, Emily. The actress said that she watches "Sesame Street" with her in order to expose her to the importance of friends, community and family.

"What I enjoy about 'Sesame Street' is that when I watch it now with Emily, that I feel like I enjoy it as an adult and there are still lessons that I need to hear about community and family and friendship. We read a lot of the books, and she’s learning about that idea of friendship."

Foster herself has done two projects with iconic characters from the children's show, which celebrated its 50th anniversary this year. In addition to singing with Elmo on the show in 2011, the actress also starred in a recent anniversary video with Cookie Monster in collaboration with Lactaid. Seeing her mom hang out with some of her favorite characters isn't something that Foster thinks her daughter has truly wrapped her mind around yet.

"She just knows that Mommy sings with Elmo, and she knows it’s me and knows Cookie Monster, but I don’t think she realizes," she laughed. "She comes to visit me on set, but she doesn’t have any idea what I do. She just thinks I have some pretty cool friends."

Watch Sutton Foster and Cookie Monster's Lactaid spot below:

 

 

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