From the voiceover studio to the acclaimed Wheelock Family Theater stage in Boston, I’m thrilled to share that I’ve made my live theater premiere in Lin-Manuel Miranda’s (of Hamilton fame) first Broadway musical, In The Heights, playing Camila, one of the principal roles. This is a dream come true!
This 2008 Tony Award-winner for Best Musical centers on an ensemble of characters in the Washington Heights neighborhood of New York City. My character is a strong Puerto Rican mother – kind’a, sort’a who I am! This extraordinary play addresses themes of immigration, Latin culture, connection, love, unity, community and home. It ranges from poignant to hilarious, and the songs (all in great Latin rhythms) and choreography serve the story line faithfully.
I haven’t performed in a musical since my days at Bryn Mawr College. During my adolescence it was one of my passions, so you can imagine how honored I am to have been given this opportunity by the award-winning Wheelock Family Theater, where our family saw so many fabulous topnotch musicals when our twins were little, and where they studied theater in the summer.
I cried when I was offered the role and I’m very happy to say that it has been a wonderful experience! We’ve had responsive full houses in the gorgeous 660 seat theater since the show opened. The 16 show run (plus 6 packed shows for middle and high school students) turned into an 18-show run and the last 6 shows have completely sold out! That coupled with a string of standing ovations has made this experience something I will never, ever forget.
What am I most grateful for? How much this stretched me as an actor, of course! As a voice actor I have continuously studied to improve my skills with fantastic casting directors and coaches. But add in the blocking, the interaction with other actors and the way the audience responds differently each night, and it’s a whole other ball of wax. I have had to continuously respond to the stimuli in the moment. Fun!
I’m reminded of how much I’ve grown since studying with my talented friend Rebecca Haugh’s “Love That Improv” online voiceover improvisation classes, which have helped me become a more creative voice actor.
Of course, I feel tremendous gratitude toward the other talented actor/singers and dancers in the show for their inspiration and patience as I learned all about the theater world and lingo.
The experience has challenged me, but I believe I rose to the occasion thanks to good direction and stewardship from those around me. Gracias de nuevo – thanks again to the Wheelock Family Theater, for choosing me. Lastly, I’m also deeply grateful to all the friends who traveled from all parts of the country to see me perform. I’m so blessed.
I’m reminded of how fortunate I am to make my living from my voice and creativity. From music, to voiceover, to singing and acting on the stage, this experience reminds me of how we transitioned from our full-time music career into voiceover, years ago. I’ve loved every minute of it, but I so look forward to helping my clients once again at my voiceover studio, once we take that final bow on Sunday night!