The Providence Players of Fairfax will soon premiere the third production of its 19th season, To Kill a Mockingbird, written by Christopher Sergel, directed by Beth Gilles-Whitehead. Tickets for this American classic, based on Harper Lee’s Pulitzer prize-winning novel and one of the best loved stories of all time, are selling as quickly as any show in Providence Players history. In Part 1 of interviews with the cast, director, and crew of To Kill a Mockingbird, meet Sophia Manicone.
Julie: Please tell our readers where they may have seen your work on local stages and roles you have played or significant technical roles you have fulfilled.
Sophia: This past fall I made my professional debut at Creative Cauldron in Ruthless! The Musical. That was super exciting for me! Some of the other local shows I’ve done are Little Women (I played the youngest sister, Amy March), Fiddler on the Roof (I played the youngest sister, Bielke), and I also played Red Riding Hood in Into the Woods. I am currently working on the role of Gertrude McFuzz in Seussical at my elementary school and I will be back again at Creative Cauldron in May in a brand-new musical called Kaleidoscope, written by Matt Conner and Stephen Gregory-Smith.
Tell us about your role in this production. Have you enjoyed it? How is it important to the show? What is your creative process?
I play the role of Scout who is an active, curious and independent girl who doesn’t like to put up with any nonsense. Because Scout is a kid, she can ask questions that other characters wouldn’t be comfortable asking, but they are the questions everyone “should” be asking. I think Scout helps the audience to think about the real things that this story is trying to emphasize.
My creative process?! Well, I like to read through the script from start to finish before I do anything else. And if the script is based on a book, I read the book. Then, I start to work on memorizing lines and talking with my director about the character and why she does some of the things she does or asks the questions that she asks. For me, the best part is once I have the lines memorized and we have the blocking figured out; at that point its easier for me to get more “into” my character.
As a classic show, To Kill a Mockingbird has been staged many times. Why should people see this production?
I think people should bring their kids to see this show. Most kids will have to read this book in school at some point, and seeing it on stage will make it more memorable and easier to understand when they read the book. This story is a good one to talk about with your parents and friends. I hope that people who come to see the show will feel how much this cast loves this show. When I went to the audition, it was the most crowded audition I’ve seen here in Virginia. There were tons of people there, which told me that this must be one great story and that we are going to do one heck of a good show!
What do you hope people will take away from seeing To Kill a Mockingbird?
It’s important to try to step into other people’s shoes. Things aren’t always the way they seem. And, don’t just go with the crowd. Give real thought to your opinions – especially when they are about things that will impact other people.
An American classic based on the Pulitzer prize-winning masterwork and one of the best-loved stories of all time, To Kill a Mockingbird is a gripping and heart-wrenching tale of coming-of-age in the South. Set in a town poisoned by prejudice, the play portrays a world of great beauty and savage inequities through the eyes of a young girl, Scout, as her father—a crusading local lawyer—risks everything to defend a black man unjustly accused of a terrible crime.
To Kill a Mockingbird plays from March 24 – April 8, 2017 at the James Lee Community Center Theater – 2855 Annandale Road, in Falls Church VA. For tickets, email firstname.lastname@example.org, call (703) 425-6782, and leave a message, or purchase them online (there is no fee).
Here Are Performance Dates And Times:
Thursday, Friday and Saturday 7:30 p.m.
March 24 – April 8
Sunday Matinees 2:00 p.m.
March 26 & April 2