What was the first show you were in at The 5th?
My first show at the 5th was A Christmas Story in 2010. I was the swing, which meant I understudied eight women in the ensemble. It was my first professional job out of college and I had never even understudied one person in a show, let alone eight. I was terrified.
How many shows have you done at The 5th in total?
I had to actually go back through the season archives to figure out how many exactly. I have done 22 productions with The 5th and Holiday Inn will be my 23rd. That is only counting the mainstage productions. I have also done over a dozen new works and readings with The 5th.
How do you feel you have evolved as an artist over the years?
I have grown immensely as a performer over the years. The 5th really pushed me to develop my dance skills by simply giving me numerous opportunities to dance in the ensemble and also in leading roles, encouraging me to become a stronger more confident performer all around. Dance was always something I considered to be my fourth or fifth threat (ha) but now I feel pretty confident as a singer, actor and a dancer, making me much more well rounded and versatile. I love playing a leading role, but dancing in the ensemble of shows can be incredibly difficult and demanding work, and I absolutely love having the opportunity to do both.
Who are some of the people you have acted for or with who have inspired you or motivated you to be better, particularly at The 5th?
It’s funny, when I started working at The 5th I was consistently one of the youngest people in the cast, starting when I was 21, and I would look up to people like Trina Mills, Taryn Darr and Billie Wildrick and admire their focus and professionalism, and now I not only do I get the opportunity to work and dance alongside them, but they are now some of my greatest friends. Eric Ankrim directed me in ELF and Grease, and now we are starring opposite each other for the second time! It’s just awesome that I get to work with people I have admired for so long that are now such a huge part of my life. The 5th feels like family, no matter what your role in a production is.
What are you looking forward to about Holiday Inn?
I’m looking forward to working my butt off! I love working hard in a show, and this show is jam-packed with all the good stuff -beautiful classic holiday music and tap dancing to name a few. Being in a show around the holidays means guaranteed hangouts with some of my closest friends. Taryn, Matt, Eric and I are all really great friends and already have such a strong connection that I am excited to bring that to the show and our characters relationships. Also, Holiday Inn is one of my Dads favorite movies!
- Favorite holiday? A tie between Halloween and Christmas!
- Favorite cold-weather beverage? Hot chocolate with a million mini marshmallows
- Cake or pie? Cake, unless it’s pumpkin pie aka the only pie I like.
- Underrated musical? I Love You Because!
- Favorite thing about Seattle at the holidays? The festive lights downtown, downtown shopping, and being in the Christmas show at the 5th.
Holiday Inn plays November 24 – December 31. Click here for tickets.
Photo credit Mark Kitaoka