What year are you in school and how many years have you been a Rising Star?
My name is Lea, I’m a Junior at RKA 141 and I’ve been involved with RRS since 8th grade.
Besides getting the word out, what are some of the other benefits of performing at the Sunday Market? Does it help you as a performer?
Besides promoting the show, the Sunday market performances familiarize the less experienced actors with an audience. It also helps bond an ensemble by having time to hang out outside rehearsal.
Who do you play in 42nd Street and what do you enjoy most about the role?
I play a chorus girl named Ethel. She isn’t a very significant role to the plot, but I’m a part of almost every song. I think its just as fun and important being part of a company in such an ensemble based show.
What has been your favorite show so far with Rising Stars and why?
My favorite show so far has been The Boyfriend. Though I was fairly young and didn’t have a part, it was a prime example of what RRS is about. This show had many generations performing together - it included seniors who were with the program for years, to newbies who joined that year. I loved this show because it had such a strong bond between the cast, and because the show was amazing!!
What has been your most challenging role as a Rising Star?
Last summer RRS put on a production of Les Miserable. I was cast as a pre pubescent boy named Gavroche. This was my first big role with all of the college students who have been the building blocks of what RRS is today. I was pretty nervous to portray a 10 year old boy who gets shot multiple times while singing, but Laurie made it easy to understand the part and she made an awesome show.
In addition to being a performer, what other role in RRS, if any, do you feel a duty to play?
Over the years I’ve learned that RRS isn’t just about performing. Yes, acting is the one thing that everyone in the group has in common, but the program has unbelievably talented alumni that are still friends today. This program is home to so many groups of friends that would never have existed if it wasn’t for RRS.
When I first started during Rent I was welcomed with open arms by many of the older members, so whenever there are new kids joining I just think of how nervous I was my first day, and how amazing it felt when a senior came over and asked me how my day was going. I feel like now that I’ve been with the program for so long, that its important to keep the same sense of family and kindness alive.
If we click play on your i-Pod, what song will play?
My iPod has the most confusing mix of music you would ever see (thanks to RRS). If you clicked play, the songs would go from Rap, to Indie, to Seasons of Love. I have a sound track from every show we’ve done for RRS, and every time a song comes on I automatically think of the great moments that took place on stage during that song.