In between battling witches, wolves, and giants the cast of NextStop Theatre Company’s Into the Woods shared with us their journey of preparing for their roles in this popular Stephen Sondheim musical. In Part 3: Meet Alizon Reggioli.
Joel: Why did you want to be part of this production of Into the Woods? What did you sing at your audition?
Alizon: I’m a huge Sondheim fan and when I saw the posting for the audition, I immediately went through my rep to see what I could offer. All I had ready was “You Could Drive a Person Crazy” [from Sondheim’s Company] so I sang that as if I were Cinderella’s step-mother, upset about a dirty house.
Who do you play in the show and why did you want to play these characters?
I play Cinderella’s Mother and Granny. it’s such fun to play two distinctly different characters in one show.
How do you relate to your characters?
I can relate to Cinderella’s mother as a mother myself, you always want the best for your child and Granny -well, no one likes to feel threatened…
Have you appeared in any other productions of Into the Woods?
No, this is my first, and it’s thrilling!
Have you worked with any of your castmates before?
No, and they’re all so talented, so I’m honored to be a part of this cast.
Which character in the show is most like you and the least like you?
The Wolf. I mean, who doesn’t enjoy “talking to your meal”?
Tell me about the songs you sing.
I sing mostly ensemble music and it’s glorious.
What do you admire most about your castmates performances?
Even when my collegaues try not to be funny, they are. There are many poignant moments in this show and it’s impressive to see how seemingly effortless these scenes are tackled by this impressive group.
Sondheim’s lyrics are brilliant in Into the Woods. What are your favorite lyrics that you sing and your favorite lyrics that someone else sings?
My character:”Opportunity is not a lengthy visitor” Another: “Dwarfs are very upsetting.”
What is your favorite song that you don’t sing in the show?
One of my favorites, because let’s face it, the whole show’s a gem, is “On the Steps of the Palace.” It’s wonderfully fun to sing, the rhymes and text are amazing, but it’s also very very tricky, which keeps the singer engaged.
How can audiences in 2014 relate to Into the Woods now?
Shakespeare’s characters always went into to the woods to solve their problems. It’s a timeless convention. We all have issues to confront and we all need to leave our comfort zones to find our own metal. “Isn’t it nice to know a lot, and a little bit not.”
Why do you think Into the Woods is still so popular today?
The story is great fun. We are all familiar with the storybook characters, but seeing them endure real pain and not just the fleeting difficulties with which we connect them in the traditional stories is what connects us. AND THE MUSIC!
What is the best advice Director Evan Hoffmann and/or Musical Director Elisa Rosman has given you in preparing for your performance?
Explore! and Count! I won’t tell who said what.
Why is this production so special?
About a year ago I heard Sondheim interviewed at Strathmore. He said that he didn’t care if great singers were in his shows, so long as the performers were great actors. I believe he would be quite impressed with this production, great actors who can also sing beautilfully.
What do you want audiences to take with them after seeing Into the Woods?
Running Time: Approximately 2 hours, 30 minutes with one intermission.
Into the Woods plays through June 1, 2014 at NextStop Theatre Company at the Industrial Strength Theatre -269 Sunset Park Drive, in Herndon, VA. For tickets, call the box office at (866) 811-4111, or purchase them online.
Meet the Cast of NextStop Theatre Company’s ‘Into the Woods’ Part 1: Brittany Martz.
Meet the Cast of NextStop Theatre Company’s ‘Into the Woods’ Part 2: John Loughney.
Kathy Lee Gifford joins NextStop Theatre Company’s ‘Into the Woods.