On August 15,1992 Nickelodeon launched “SNICK” an evening block that premiered new and exciting episodes from a slew of shows from 8-10pm every Saturday night on the channel for the more “tween” crowd. If you wanted to get in the house early, make yourself dinner, and watch your favorite show that was brand new but had things that related to you more, then SNICK was it! One of the shows apart of this premiere date was the sketch comedy/musical/dancing show titled Roundhouse. Loosely based off of SNL and In Living Color(the co-executive producer was actually one of the writers from it) it combined young adults parodying hilarious skits from pop culture at the time and have the cast perform amazing high energy dance routines and actual singing too. It was such a groundbreaking show and to this day nothing like it has been seen on Nickelodeon, or any other kids channel really. Sadly after 4 seasons Roundhouse was cancelled due to behind the scenes drama and for that reason is why the show has been blacklisted by Nickelodeon for many years…until now!
In October of last year is when another late night program, this time on TeenNick, called “The Splat” which shows a variety of “old school” Nickelodeon shows from the 80s, 90s, and early 2000’s debuted and became a hit for the now adults who grew up with the channel as kids and reminisce over this time period in their lives. Many were astonished to know that Roundhouse has been a part of this block since then after 21 years since the last episode aired on TV. I got a chance to talk to Mark David, one of the original cast members who stayed on the show’s all 4 seasons about his time on there and filming in Florida, what it was like when the show ended, and how The Splat has given new life to the show. Mark has become a good guy in this project and he previously did a video for us before. You can read our interview below to hear his excitement about the fans and how much he enjoyed the experience.
1. How eventually did you get casted in Roundhouse? I know another actor was in the pilot before you if i’m not mistaken.
The guy who was in the Pilot was Chris Dupret. He and I have been friends since 1988. I don’t remember why he didn’t do the show. Ivan told me to go audition and I got the job pretty quick after singing and doing some characters for them. It was like on a Friday and I flew to FL on Monday.
2. When you found out you were gonna be moving to Florida and seeing Nickelodeon Studios what was your reaction?
I was excited and nervous! Seeing the studios and facilities was icing on the cake, I knew it was serious business then!
3. What was a typical day like being there?
Hot and humid. Everyday was different on the show. That’s why it was so fun.
4. Do you remember other shows filming there at the same time you were?
Yep I became friends with Melissa J Hart from Clarissa Explains It All. I actually joined her and her family in NYC for Thanksgiving one year!
5. At the time there was alot of hype of Florida being seen as “Hollywood East” because of all the tv production there. What was one of the good things about living and working in Orlando?
Ivan and I had our motorcycles so we went to Daytona and Tampa. We rode a lot!
6. How great was all the staff who worked there? I always hear positive stories.
Everyone was top notch, very nice people.
7. You and co-star Natalie Nucci also got to be in a special episode of Double Dare. If you can remember anything about it and can you describe the feeling of being slimed?
8. Did you have a favorite ride at Universal Studios Florida?
E.T. For sure.
9. In the book Slimed by Mathew Klickstein, there was mentions of conflict between the show and the network. Merchandising and a potential tour happening before the show got cancelled. Was it like that from the beginning or later on when the show got moved to L.A?
We moved to LA in the 2nd season so that happened quick. The whole point of doing the show in Fl and not Ca was that Fl is a “right to work” state, which mean there are no unions. If we had signed our contracts in Ca it would have cost Nick/Viacom much more to make. We also would be getting residuals even now, those of us that we’re SAG members. As it was we were takin advantage of in a big way as a cast by doing the show in Orlando. We really didn’t make that much per episode at all. I make more now as an editor for Revolt TV then I did as an actor in Fl.
10. Do you keep in touch with anyone from the show?
Rita and Benny
Heather Scheffeld who was a writer on the show.
11. Favorite behind the scenes memory
Too many to mention!
12. How do you feel knowing that Roundhouse and the rest of 90s Nickelodeon made such a positive impact on fans and is still loved today?
Feels great! Reminds me that we were really on the right track! All That has a lot to thank for laying it down.
13. Do you mind explaining to what you’ve been up to these days?
I’m an editor now! There are countless experiences since 1994. Moved to NYC in 2000 and moved back to LA in 2005. I lived in Harlem on 137th and Lenox when I lived in NY, which was amazing.
14. Roundhouse recently aired as a part of TeenNick’s newest block called “The Splat”. After almost 20 years of it not being shown on television how did you react when you found out it was finally going to be shown again and the fans happiness towards it?
It’s amazing. I personally know the folks at The Splat from working at VH1 in NY. They are great people!
15. What do you think made Nick Studios so great and special and would you like to see it be reopened?
Just loved the energy and that Nick was incapsulated in such a great studio!
Again thanks Mark so much for the interview!