BWW Interviews: Part Three of Our Interview Series with the Cast of INTO THE WOODS

Photo by Siggi Ragnar.

BroadwayWorld is thrilled to share with you an interview series featuring the cast of Woodlawn Theatre's current production of Into the Woods.

One of Sondheim's most enchanting works, Into the Woods follows the stories of the Baker and his wife who wish to have a child, Cinderella who wishes to attend the King's Festival and Jack who wishes his cow would give milk. With the words 'once upon a time,' the story begins. We follow Cinderella, Rapunzel, Little Red Riding Hood and Jack (of beanstalk fame) encountering the consequences traditional fairytales conveniently ignore.

Into the Woods plays The Woodlawn Theatre, located at 1920 Fredericksburg Road, now through March 16. Tickets are on sale now at www.woodlawntheatre.org or by calling the box office at 210-267-8388. Show times are Friday and Saturday at 7:30 pm and Sundays 3 pm. Tickets cost $15 - $23 with discounts for students, military and SATCO members.

Today, we bring you our interview with cast members Sharon Newhardt and Trevor Chauvin who play Cinderella's Stepmother and Jack, respectively.

BWW: What made you decide to audition?

SN: I would have regretted it if I hadn't tried! This is an iconic show, and I wanted to be a part of it.

TC: I decided to audition because it has been far too long since I have had the honor and privilege of performing Sondheim. I also auditioned because playing Jack was on my bucket list of characters to play (before I got too old!).

BWW: How familiar were you with the show prior to rehearsals?

SN: Very. I lived in NYC when it opened on Broadway. I saw it during its first season. I also Stage Managed a production in Los Angeles in 1993.

TC: I was lucky enough to do this musical my senior year of high school. I played Rapunzel's prince and Mysterious Man. So I was VERY familiar with this piece, even though that was almost ten years ago.

Rebecca Trinidad and Trevor Chauvin. Photo by Siggi Ragnar.

BWW: Why do you think Into the Woods is as beloved as it is?

SN: The framework is familiar, characters we have known from childhood. The themes are common and most people can relate to at least one of the characters.

TC: I think Into the Woods is so beloved because everyone knows these characters and stories. Fairy tales are part of growing up; and being able to see a fairy tale come to life in front of you with beautiful original music is fascinating. Then comes the second act where everything you know to be true is turned on its head, you find out what really happens when you get what you wish for. I think this piece has a similar appeal that Wicked does. Take a beloved story and turn everything you know about it upside down and inside out!

BWW: What has it been like to bring this show to life?

SN: To paraphrase Little Red, Exciting and Scary! The music is wonderfully difficult Sondheim, but it is so exciting to sing this music in a real production.

TC: This show is challenging and heart-wrenching. It has been a stressful and frustrating journey. Having said that, it is 100% rewarding. Being able to learn and perform this music is such an accomplishment. I have loved digging deep into a character everyone knows and being able to bring something fresh and new to it.

The ensemble. Photo by Siggi Ragnar.

BWW: Into the Woods is a huge ensemble piece. Which character do you identify with the most?

SN: The first time I worked on this show, I felt a lot like Cinderella. Now that I'm in a different season of my life, I have to say The Witch, oddly enough. I can relate to her journey as a Mother, as flawed as it is. And I know that I am not a perfect Mother, no one is. We have to do the best we can, and we all want to protect our children from all harm.

TC: It really depends on what mood I am in. I have been able to relate to Little Red, growing up is hard to do, and with knowledge comes things like responsibility. I also find myself being able to relate to the Baker's Wife. She is completely determined to get her wish; her will power and strength are inspiring. All of these characters are beautifully flawed. I think if I thought about it I could find an aspect of every character to relate to. This is yet another reason why this musical is so wonderful...everyone is totally relatable.




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