The Snowy Day and learning a new skill

  Working on the next show at The Arts Center and l'm so excited for everyone to see this one.

  The Snowy Day and Other Stories is a really cool play based on four of Ezra Jack Keats famous books. It combines live actors, music,  and shadow puppetry. I haven't attempted a shadow puppet based show since performing as a live actor puppet in The Ugly Duckling, an original show created by Katie Campbell. I performed in her version that was in western, NY and we put it together in about a week--- which, if you know anything of shadow puppetry, is INSANE. Although challening, The Ugly Duckling is one of my all time favorite theatre experiences. I can't begin to describe how special that show was, but it did win a grant from The Jim Henson Foundation, so that might give you some idea.  

    I was naturally pretty pumped to team up with Katie again on this project as the head puppeteer. We're two weeks into rehearsal, and its beginning to come back to me how difficult this style of theatre is. It takes an incredible amount of focus and precision when working with puppets the size of your thumb, moving them upside down and backwards, attempting to make it as seamless as edits in a movie. The effect, when executed well, is breathtaking. There is an incredible company, I believe it's based out of Chicago, that produces original shadow puppetry shows that are positively brilliant. They are called Manual Cinema and you can find out more about them at www.manualcinema.com. I can't think of a better example to share of how it merges theatre and film to create a unique and beaitiful art form.

I'm so excited to see Snowy Day come together, it will not just be shadow puppetry, but also add in more live actors in front of the screen interacting with the puppetry and music! The story is so fun and engaging and I really think kids and adults will both enjoy it.


Come see us!

 
January 15th, 2018   |   Permalink   |  

Mother Goose Christmas

Hey everyone!Currently sitting in a tech rehearsal for my next show, Mother Goose Christmas! We have our first preview performance next Thursday and I cannot wait to play with this one. I'm playing Humpty Dumpty- yes, THE Humpty Dumpty, wall and all. I tried on my egg costume today and its going to be a doozy! This may be the silliest of silly costumes and I'm having a ball playing with the witty wordplay of this guy.

It just points out the insane variety of roles I've been given lately. I think its been a minute since I've updated this blog, so let me give you a run down of all the characters I've played since this summer. It might be nice for my own brain to recap.

 

-  Mercade in Loves Labours Lost, the ultimate bearer of bad news.

- Biondello in Taming Of The Shrew, the friendliest hunchback of Padua.

- Lady Capulet in Romeo and Juliet, which was a combined character of Papa Cap and Mama Cap, making her one bad ass single mom.

- Dotty in Giggle, Giggle, Quack- a ray of singing southern sunshine on a busy farm.

- Brooke in Goosebumps The Musical, the energy filled (and maybe a touch neurotic) nerdy leading lady who gave me an opportunity to live out all my nostalgic dreams as well as challenge me in ways I never anticipated. This is now one of my all time favorite shows I've ever done.

Which leads me to Humpty... the pretentious, self absorbed egg with anger manangement issues.


I'm loving this crazy life I'm living.

If you want to check out Mother Goose, then follow this link for tickets:

Mother Goose Tickets

 
November 25th, 2017   |   Permalink   |  

New shows and workshops!

Hey there!

I have a lot coming up and since contracts are getting signed making things offical enough to let you know!

Before we get into my next projects, let me tell you a little about where I've been:

--I just finished up a tour of STONE SOUP for AAC Children's Theatre. In this imaginative retelling of the classic tale, I played Nona, an old woman who tells the entire story of Stone Soup, while two mimes act it out with her. We had a great time using movment, handmade sound effects and even sign language to explore all the ways you can tell a story. It was a surprise hit both in the public studio shows and the 32 schools it toured to. So much so, that it will be back on the AAC mainstage next season! I'll be reprising my role as well (more on that later!)

--Prior to STONE SOUP, I finished my third tour in a row playing Olivia in Shakespeare's TWELFTH NIGHT and a national tour of A CHRISTMAS CAROL with Nebraska Theatre Caravan. Both shows were so much fun! Despite what it can take out of you physically, I LOVE TOURING! Its almost to the point that I feel most at home on the road! ha! I've clearly forgotten what its like to live in one place. 

Moving on....


Here's whats UP NEXT:


-- I'll spend my summer with Arkansas Shakespeare Theatre, teaching and directing with The Groundlings Company while also performing in LOVE'S LABOUR'S LOST and TAMING OF THE SHREW! It's definitely going to be BUSY!

--Then, in July, I'll travel back to New York to perform with one of my favorite companies ever, SHAKE ON THE LAKE! We're doing an adaptation of Romeo and Juliet set in the late 50's, early 60's beatnik generation. I'll also be teaching with the various outreach portions of the festival and I'm told there may be a public performance of another show that will happen as well... more about that later :)


After my summer finishes up, i'll be heading back to Arkansas to work with AAC Children's Theatre for an entire season as a new company member!

I think this year is going insanely fun and I'll keep you updated as we go!

 

 

 
April 10th, 2017   |   Permalink   |  

Tour was a success!

Hey Folks,

Back from tour and finally taking some time to reflect on the experience.


It usually takes me a few days to recover from a tour. Seven shows a week in towns all over the country can be so fun and exhilarating, you don't realize how exhausted you have become till you have time off. Yet when the tour is actually a production of A Christmas Carol, and your first days off happen to be the holidays, well... you don't actually get much rest!

It's all worth it. Dicken's classic story of Ebenezer is still so special all these years later, to those of us in the show as well as those watching the show. Being a story of forgiveness, redemption, and human kindness it has a universal and timeless message that touches you night after night, no matter how many performances you do a week. There is a reason it's still told every holiday season. The message is one we should never stop listening to: love is always the answer.

I've felt so lucky to be in this production for two years. I've made so many friends and created an endless amount of tour memories. Who knows where/what my holiday season will be next year, but i hope if you see a production of Nebraska Theatre Caravan's A Christmas Carol, that you go see it! You won't regret it!

Oh, and a fun little fact for ya, one of our directors of A Christmas Carol, Kimberly Faith Hickman, is now the Artistic Director of the Omaha Community Playhouse (which houses the Nebraska Theatre Caravan)! Kimberly is incredible and I could not be more happy for her. The OCP is so lucky to have her!


As far as my next production I'm going to be involved in, well... that's to be announced soon! I've got some fun stuff coming up, but nothing I'm allowed to announce just yet! Keep checking back for updates!

 

Till next time-

Sharon

 

 
February 9th, 2016   |   Permalink   |  

Going back on the road...

Hey Guys,

 

SO SO SO excited, because now that the contract is signed I can announce I am once again going back on the road with the national tour of A Christmas Carol! I won't be reprising the role of Belle, but instead will take on the new, fun challenge playing Millie, Fred's wife! Cannot wait to be back in the world of hoop skirts, hotels, new cities, and christmas carols everyday. This tour has been performing for over 35 years and it is something special to be apart of.

 For more info on the show, plus a full intinerary check out the website: http://www.christmascarolontour.com

They also have some neat video's from a documentary on Christmas Carol that give you a behind the scenes look at preparing the show :)

 

Till next time,

Sharon

 
August 20th, 2015   |   Permalink   |  

What did you do this summer?

Recently, I taught 3 classes and directed for 6 weeks at the Arkansas Arts Center's Summer Theatre Academy and the whole experience made more of an impact than I expected. At the risk of being terribly cliche, you really do learn as much from the kids as they learn from you.

Fun Fact:

I met my current significant other while in a Summer Youth Theatre program when I was 14. No, we didn't actually date till many years later and didn't successfully stay together till almost a decade after that, but his companionship and many longlasting friendships were formed those four summers I participated. In fact, all of my friends that I keep in touch with from the program are still involved in the arts in some capacity. Its pretty darn cool when you think about it.

These programs really do make an impact! And seeing the passion and talent of some of those kids was really inspiring. The creativity and fearlessness is something I could take a few notes in. And it was satisfying to realize that my decade or so of performing has taught me a few things that I can pass along.

All in all, it was so fun and I look forward to more teaching opportunities in the future. If you have some youngsters interested in the arts send them to the Art Center's Summer Theatre Academy. Though be warned, its not for lazy kids. Invite is by audition only and the kids have a structored program of hour long classes from 9am- 3pm and then 2 hours of a rehearsal for a project performed. This program is INTENSE. But such a great deal! I taught core classes like Voice and Diction, Improv and a class for first years called Focus, but there are so many more: Technical Theare, Musical Theatre, Contemporary Dance, Theatre History, Stage Fighting, makeup, singing,  costume design- you name it, it probably exists. Check it out!


Till next time,

Sharon

 

 
August 17th, 2015   |   Permalink   |