Friday, March 22, 2013

faces // meet elizabeth

anyone who's been in theatre for any amount of time is aware that while the lead actors do carry the story of the show on their shoulders, equally important is their ensemble and understudies, who keep the show flowing and are there as backup. this group of resilient actors often perform every show, can play multiple roles, and are ready to jump in at a moment's notice to save the day. these folks are my heroes, and it is my privilege to introduce you to one of these amazing actors this morning.

meet elizabeth welch.
actress. christine u/s, mirror bride, triangle girl, and princess in The Phantom of the Opera on Broadway.

To start, introduce yourself to us! Who are you and what do you do?
I'm currently in The Phantom of the Opera on Broadway as an understudy for Christine Daae.

What is something you enjoy about being an understudy?
I love the excitement of never knowing when you'll be put on. I've gone on in the middle of the show a couple times, and it is so exciting! It certainly keeps you on your toes.

Do you have a favorite moment in Phantom that you enjoy acting/hearing/watching each night?
At the end of the second Managers scene Christine breaks down and sings, "Twisted every way." It's so short, but contains so much turmoil, love, gratitude, sacrifice and fear. And all in such a simple and beautiful melody that is delicious to sing. It's a beautiful moment.

What's been one of your career highlights?
My Broadway Debut as Christine Daae in The Phantom of the Opera. Doesn't get much better than that!

Do you have any warmup/preshow rituals you do to get yourself ready to go on stage?
Not really. Just coffee.

How did you get started in theatre?
I had my first solo in the 3-year-old choir at church, but my first show was Annie my freshman year in high school. I still remember that nerve wracking audition!

What are some of your favorites of the roles and shows you've been in to date?
There are so many - West Side Story, Beauty and the Beast, Les Miserables, The Marriage of Figaro when I was singing opera. I have a special place in my heart for the show that gave me my equity card, The Taffetas. That one really changed the course of my life.

What's one of your favorite things about working in this industry?
I get to play! I'm making my living doing the thing I love most. I dress up, make music and share joy. It's a gift.

Do you have a dream role you'd like to play someday?
Fantine in Les Miserables

Who are your role models and/or heroes? 
Julie Andrews, of course! And, I must say I really admire my husband and his take on life. Everything is all play for him. He isn't afraid to fail so he has no limits.

The most challenging thing about being on Broadway?
Balance. Balancing work and family. It's my dream job and, as I mentioned, it's the thing I love to do the most. But it can't be everything. It's all balance.

Is there a quote that inspires you?
Let it be.

Guilty pleasures? Hobbies? etc.
My guilty pleasure is the Food Network. I love to cook. I also love making handmade greeting cards and crafty things. I love beautiful things.

Anything else you'd like to share with us?
Life should be fun! Do what you love and love what you do.

Thanks so much, Elizabeth! It was great fun getting to meet you on my trip to New York last month, you're a lovely person. I can't wait to get together again when I come back - 'cause I definitely am. :)

When we went to see Phantom, I was looking for you during Hannibal, since I knew for sure you were in that scene. Then later, my parents were whispering to me asking if the mannequin in the mirror was a live person or not - I said yes, and thought, "wow, she's doing a really good job". I didn't know it was you until you told me the next day :) You have so many unique talents!

Anyway. Thanks again or sharing a bit of your life with us…and sharing your incredible talent for so many others every night on stage. You're awesome! Break a leg!

all were pictures taken from elizabeth's website and facebook page and belong to her. used with permission.

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