Lea Michele and Jonathan Groff would do anything for one another.
The former costars — who reunited with their Spring Awakening cast members in November, over 15 years after the show debuted in New York — tell PEOPLE that the recent experience was surreal and that they couldn’t have done it without one another.
Michele was 19 when the show began performances Off-Broadway in 2006 prior to its Broadway transfer that year, and Groff was 21. They’ve since become best friends and went on to star in numerous film and TV projects together, including the musical hit series Glee.
Michele eventually got married to Zandy Reich and welcomed their son, Ever, in August 2020.
“What a blessing,” Michele, now 35, says of reuniting with the Spring Awakening cast — including costars Lauren Pritchard and Lilli Cooper, who also recently became mothers.
“To see our sons playing together!” she adds. “I’m just so grateful, I’ve experienced so many versions of life with these girls.”
While rehearsing for the one-night-only event — which was filmed for an HBO documentary, airing May 3 — Michele, Cooper, 32, and Pritchard, 34, had some bonding time with their boys (Michele’s son Ever, 20 months; Cooper’s son Bodie, 7 months; and Pritchard’s son Xander, 20 months), taking strolls in New York City in their downtime.
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When asked if being around so many tiny tots gave Groff baby fever, he responds: “Great question!”
Though he played coy on whether he wants to eventually become a father, there’s one thing he knows for sure: Michele is willing to be his surrogate.
“I’ll carry your baby. I will,” she tells Groff, to which he asks, “You will?”
Michele responds, “Hell yeah! I love being pregnant. It’s so much fun.”
“Good to know,” Groff says.
There’s only one problem if he decides to have kids, according to the two-time Tony Award nominee. “I have this weird quirk where I scare small children because — this was with my two nieces as well, between the ages of 0 and 2 — I come in hot with the enthusiasm, and it freaks them out.”
“This is the case with Ever as well,” says Groff. “So I’m slowly trying to play it cool to gain his love and affection back.”
Still, one thing wins little Ever over with Uncle Groff. The actor says that Michele’s son is actually a big fan of the hit Broadway show Hamilton.
“My one in with him is that he likes ‘You’ll Be Back’ from Hamilton,” says Groff, who played King George III in the Lin-Manuel Miranda musical. “Whenever we FaceTime and Ever’s there, I’ll be like, ‘Da, da, da, da, da!’ [I’m] waiting [for] the age when he’s going to be able to watch Frozenand then maybe I’ll have another in, but I’m working on it.”
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Michele was introduced to Groff when they starred as ill-fated teenage lovers Wendla and Melchior, respectively, in Spring Awakeningbut the New Year’s Eve actress says she knows their paths would have crossed regardless.
“It just so happened that we met to do this show, but I feel like we would’ve met some way or another in life because we were meant to be in each other’s lives. I felt so safe with him every night. [in Spring Awakening],” she says. “The character of Wendla was such an honor to play, and as an actor, this is such great material, but it’s still hard to have to go there every night, and I couldn’t have done it if it wasn’t for Jonathan.”
Spring Awakening: Those You’ve Known will debut May 3 at 9 pm ET on HBO and will be available to stream on HBO Max.