Being a full-time theatre student can be tough, but add a professional acting job on top of that and you have yourself one very full semester. This is currently the life of three School of Theatre + Dance students. Emily Norcia, Ariel Reich and Melanie Sholl are in the Hippodrome’s production of All Girl Frankenstein by Bob Fisher, directed by Lauren Warhol Caldwell (MFA Theatre Performance ’90). In total, All Girl Frankenstein features 10 past and present members of the UF School of Theatre + Dance community.
For Sholl, a second-year BFA Acting student, this was a show unlike anything she has previously done. “It really opened my eyes to a different way of working," Sholl said. "It was such an open and creative process where everyone was encouraged to explore.”
Current students Norcia, Reich and Sholl are joined on stage by School of Theatre + Dance alumni Candace Clift (MFA Theatre ’11), Nichole Hamilton (MFA Theatre ’11), Stephanie Lynge (MFA Theatre ’14) and Marissa Toogood (BFA Musical Theatre ’13). Associate Professor of Scene Design Mihai Ciupe served as the scenic designer for the production, and Robert Robins (BFA Theatre Production ’85) was the lighting designer.
Reich describes being in All Girl Frankenstein, her first professional production in which she is a featured performer, as “an unbelievable dream and blessing.” The play is a new take on the classic Mary Shelley novel, is fast-paced and surprising, with truly great and honest moments. The cast is all female, as indicated by the title, and truly talented. Reich speaks of the cast as she would her own family and adds, “We have a blast. It’s a very supportive place to come to work.”
Elizabeth is a character that had Reich exploring and showcasing different parts of herself. “Even though the world of the play can be strange at times, the inside is completely real.”
All Girl Frankenstein is on stage through this Sunday, Nov. 8, 2015. For more information and tickets, visit thehipp.org.