Q & A with The Pajama Game’s Trina Mills

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In this Q & A with the multi-talented Trina Mills, she tells us about what it takes to balance the three roles she fills in The Pajama Game: ensemble member, Associate Choreographer, and dance captain. Read more below!

You are in the ensemble, you’re the Associate Choreographer AND the dance captain. Tell us what each of those roles means and what they do for the show.

I am! Actually, the three roles really help each other. As the Associate Choreographer, I help Bob Richard as he comes up with the choreography. So I’m at all dance rehearsals which means I know all the choreography and spacing, which is the job of the dance captain. Being in the ensemble is my time to just focus on me and my track. It’s a BLAST creating a character, and having a more intimate knowledge of all the ins and outs of what everyone else is doing just helps me be a better ensemble member. So, in short, I’m so lucky to be able to do all three at the same time.

Trina, second saloon girl from the left, as Timberline in Paint Your Wagon, Spring 2016.

What is your favorite part about these roles?

I LOVE the creative time I get to have with Bob [Richards, Choreographer of The Pajama Game] as he comes up with the movement. Being in on it from close to the beginning is such a cool thing. He’s such an inspiration.

Trina, second from the right in the green dress, as Miss Krumholtz in How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying, Winter 2016.

How do you balance these three jobs?

I’m getting better at it! I meditate and I find that really centers me. I also listen. A LOT. I keep my ears open all the time. It’s a great way to learn in the theater.

Trina, second from the left, in A Chorus Line, Fall 2015.

What does a daily rehearsal schedule look like for you?

An average day of rehearsal before we move on stage means starting between 9am and 10am, and working until 6pm or 7pm with a lunch break, of course. If I’m not working in a scene or musical number, though, I’m usually not on a “break.” I’m usually doing some pre-production, discussing or creating with Bob. Which is awesome!

Are there ever times where your job as an ensemble member conflicts with your job as the Associate Choreographer, or vice versa?

I truly don’t think so. I really feel like they each help the other.

Don’t miss triple threat Trina in our production of The Pajama Game, playing at The 5th Avenue Theatre February 1-March 5. Click here to buy tickets and find out more.

Thanks to Mark and Tracy Photography for the production photos included above.

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