We interviewed first-time actress Katy Donahue from the 2016 ArtStream Theatre Company production Parks & Inspiration.
Here are some highlights from the interview:
This is your first ArtStream musical, but have you ever been in a play before?
No, actually, I have not. But I have seen a lot of plays.
So what made you want to be an actor?
I love telling stories. When I was younger, my sister and I always pretended to be other people or characters. I’ve always enjoyed plays and musicals so I decided to give it a try. And I’m glad I did . . . I really look forward to rehearsals on Tuesdays.
Who do you play in Parks & Inspiration?
I’m playing Rose Woodland, an artist who gets transformed into a dragon. I love dragons and I myself am an artist so I sort of put the two together. I paint animals. I pretty much paint nature for the most part – unless it’s an assignment.
What’s it been like working with the company?
I think everyone works well together. The challenge was putting everyone’s ideas together.
. . . Someone wanted to be an author. And then someone wanted to be an eagle. We wanted to do something with nature and fantasy elements. It took us awhile to brainstorm, but we finally came up with a sort of cohesive play.
So how does Rose get turned into a dragon?
A genie accidentally transforms a writer into a fairy godmother/fairy godfather. And his magic hits the forest and Rose ends up in the crossfires.
What are some of the challenges of acting onstage?
Knowing where to go is a challenge. It can get a bit hectic (laughs), especially in the last scene because everyone is onstage and it happens so quickly. Then we have to get in our spots for the last song. You know, costume changes are going around because some people are getting enchanted and some, like me, are getting enchanted back to their original character. That’s probably the most challenging.
Do you ever get nervous before you go on stage?
Actually, yes, I do. But I’m a bit more confident than when I was younger. I just think of the story. I don’t think, “I’m onstage in front of a bunch of people.” I focus on the story and the having fun and the other actors. And most of the time I get through that.
What do you want to tell people who are coming to the show?
Expect the unexpected! I love this show because it illustrates the magic of everything that is around you. Things you might not notice.