Angel in the house today! Lets hear from Sara Rae Womack…
Sara is a local actor/choreographer who has been seen at Stray Dog Theatre, New Line Theatre, R-S Theatrics, Act, Inc., and Magic Smoking Monkey Theatre. She recently completed the sold-out run of In the Heights with R-S Theatrics as Yolanda (“no hablo ingles”). By day, Sara is the Program Assistant for Saint Louis University’s Department of Fine and Performing Arts. In the Spring, you can catch her work at New Line Theatre in Anything Goes, where she’ll be playing Virtue as well as co-choreographing with fellow Angel Michelle Sauer. Connect with her on social media @sararaewo or check out her website, sararaewomack.wix.com/sara
Q: What was your first experience in theatre?
Well, I’ve been a dancer since I was five years old, and I started doing “proper” theatre in high school, but I suppose my first actual show was a summer school production in primary or elementary school. We did what I am sure is a theatrical masterpiece entitled “We Has Jazz.” I played…Ella Fitzgerald. Forgive me, world.
Q: What is the best piece of career advice anyone has ever given you?
This is a two-part answer for me. Growing up in dance class, my mentor Ann Gustafson taught us to listen to notes that were given to other dancers, in case there were any corrections that we could apply to our own practice. It’s a nosy habit, but I think it’s been one of the most important lessons I’ve been taught. So, when we were rehearsing for Funny Girl at Stray Dog Theatre, our director Gary Bell was working on a song with Lindsey Jones, my dear friend and our fantastic Fanny Brice. He told her that in that moment, she didn’t need to prove how good of a singer she was, because the audience would already know how talented she was. As actors, we are always trying to prove ourselves, and in doing so, we sometimes distort our storytelling. We don’t always have to prove how great of a singer we are, or how pretty or thin or tall we are. The audience sees us more clearly then we see ourselves. Our job is just to tell the story in the most authentic way possible, putting our narcissism aside. (btw, Lindsey is not only a beautiful singer, but a fantastic actress. She killed it.)
Q: Tell us about a backstage or onstage mishap you lived through.
So I wasn’t onstage, but we were doing a production of Dirty Rotten Scoundrels at Kirkwood Theatre Guild, and when we got to this musical number called The Reckoning (which is a BIG reveal of the show), the cue line was given, and for some reason the band wasn’t coming in. They were stationed on this tall platform above the set. So, my friend Ryan Glosmeyer (who was playing Freddy), basically did the beginning of this patter song as a monologue…that just happened to rhyme. Brilliant. It turned out that the band was all plugged into this one outlet in a corner upstage that accidently got unplugged during a scene change. So, they were up on this tall platform where no one could see them, playing, and nothing was coming out of the monitors. Amazingly, they figured it out and got plugged in just in time for this huge trio section of the number. I’ll never forget it. The ensemble was all sitting in the dressing room under the stage, and we just froze. But hey, it all worked out. And for the record, Dirty Rotten is a fantastic and hugely underrated show. David Yazbek is a genius.
Q: What is your dream role/show?
If I ever make the time to learn piano, Carole King in Beautiful- The Carole King Musical. Until then, Dot in Sunday in the Park with George.
Q: What is your current guilty TV Pleasure?
Y’all, I don’t have a television or internet in my apartment, so I haven’t seen anything current. My favorite television show, though, is and will always be Gilmore Girls. Team Jess; of that there is no doubt.
Than you Sara- Can’t wait to see you in Anything Goes!
Grace Austin is an STL area director and educator.
See her work at gracemaustin.com