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Can you tell us a bit about yourself and how you got started in theatre?

Sophora: I got into theatre from a young age after being cast in my first ever role i na professional Christmas production of Toad of Toad Hall in the New Vic Theatre (in the round) in the UK when I was in primary school. It meant getting time off school and spending time with the adult cast; experiencing the scale of such a show cemented for me at that age that this is what I wanted to pursue!

Did you undergo any formal or informal training?

Sophora: Most of my days after school were taken up with choir, singing lessons, LAMDA acting lessons, and piano! I studied performing arts up to the age of 18 and then went to university to complete a Bachelor of Musical Theatre, Drama and Film.

Can you share a particularly special or challenging project from your theatre career so far?

Sophora: The first show I produced and performed during my time at university was particularly special. I won a grant to create the show, which meant that meant that once we had performed it in the university theatre, we could transfer into the City of Bath Theatre, which was incredibly challenging due to the scale, but also very rewarding!

Are you working on any shows at the moment?

Sophora: I am working on our upcoming A Night at the Musicals, which is the end of April at the Ron Hurley Theatre, with my amazing team! And our wonderful cast will start rehearsing in the upcoming weeks. I am really looking forward to seeing everything we have planned come into fruition.

Are there specific types of roles or theatre genres you find most rewarding or challenging?

Sophora: I often think comedy is more challenging to pull off in a production than dramatic. It is also really rewarding when you get the laughs and know the choices you or the show made have landed well and have given people that enjoyment!

How do you approach collaboration with directors, fellow actors, and the production team? Can you share a positive collaboration experience that stood out to you?

Sophora: Producing the first A Night at the Musicals by myself was a lot to take on when I also work a full time corporate job. So when I knew I wanted to continue this venture, I brought in a more permanent team to help me grow the show. That experience of getting to bounce ideas and to have back-up in the decision-making has been so much more enjoyable and has elevated the show beyond what I could have done solo.

Are there specific goals or roles you aspire to achieve in the future?

Sophora: I would love to continue working on growing A Night at the Musicals. There is a lot more we can do with the formula of this concert and see how far we can take it!

What advice do you have for individuals aspiring to gain a role in a stage show?

Sophora: I heavily thought for many years that performing, whether it be stage or screen, was going to be my full-time career, and it was all I dreamt about. The reality of graduating and getting a job, then stressing about where the next paycheck would come from, hit me harder than I thought. After a particularly big letdown that I had my heart set on, I decided to travel! Fast forward to now and I work a full-time corporate job in Australia. I had lost some of my passion for the industry, but then doing some community theatre shows reignited that passion and led to me bringing A Night at the Musicals to Brisbane, 13 years after I did it at university! There aren't many paid performing opportunities if you decide to take another career path as your income, or if you are in your 30s and enter the realm of being too old for some roles and too young for others... or if you are a terrible dancer... So my advice is, it is more than achievable to create a platform so that you and others can do what you love while letting it fit into whatever path your day to day life leads you!


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