5 Questions with Gracie De Loache, who plays Fastrada in North Carolina Theatre's Upcoming Production of Pippin
Starting July 6th and running through the 8th, the North Carolina Theatre Conservatory, which is North Carolina Theatre’s flagship training program for budding young actors, will present Pippin at the A.J. Fletcher Opera Theatre at the Duke Energy Center for the Performing Arts.
All actors in the production are participants in the NC Theatre Conservatory’s Master Summer Theatre Arts School. They range from middle school students to rising college students, and all have had the distinction of taking part in a four week summer camp that focuses on pre-professional theatre arts training of the highest caliber.
Here at Triangle Arts Review, we were lucky enough to get an interview with Gracie De Loache, who plays Fastrada in the show.
Q: What do you love most about your role?
Gracie is really excited about her vivacious character, Fastrada and seems to understand her well. Gracie says she loves Fastrada’s “sass and wit, as well as the fact that she always goes after what she wants, even though the means are certainly questionable.”
Q: What is the most challenging thing about your role?
While Gracie is excited to play Fastrada, she admits the role is a very physically demanding one. She says her biggest challenge in playing the character is “the stamina it requires." “Fastrada,” Gracie explains, “is a dance heavy role, and I have grown so much while gaining the strength to play her.”
Q: What are you most excited for the audience to see?
Obviously, Gracie has been busy (and exhausted) preparing for all the dancing her role requires. Fortunately, though, that hard work is about to pay off when the show opens tomorrow. Gracie says she’s excited for the audience to “hear and see ‘Morning Glow.’” She says it’s her “favorite musical moment in the show” because it involves the whole cast.
Q: What preparation have you done for your role?
It’s pretty obvious that everyone involved in this production has done a LOT Of work preparing for it. However, Gracie really demonstrates just how much work she and the others have done. “Aside from learning lines, music, and choreography, most of the preparation I have done for my role is through character work and development,” she explains. “We have all spent a lot of time together working on backstories and relationships for our characters, which is so helpful in the telling of this incredible story.”
Q: How has this program helped you to grow as a young artist?
Gracie’s earlier answers do a great job at revealing how the program has helped her to grow as a dancer, singer, actress, and all-around team player. However, those aren’t the only things she’s learned. Gracie, who has four years of experience with Master STAS, says that she “has learned what it is like to work in a professional environment and the responsibilities that come with it.” She goes on to say, “I have also learned the importance of dedicating time to exploring the characters I am portraying. Most importantly, I have learned to have love and respect for my craft and the people around me.”
There’s no doubt that the program has helped Gracie and her castmates in major ways. Viewers of this weekend’s productions will get to see just how much all that hard work has paid off when Pippin finally hits the stage!
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