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"Cinderella" role is magical for Rochester's Elizabeth Brady
With her first national tour just out of college, as part of ‚ÄúRogers + Hammerstein‚Äôs Cinderella,‚ÄĚ Elizabeth Brady is enjoying a charmed life in the theater.
And the Rochester native didn‚Äôt even need a fairy godmother to do it.
‚ÄúI was fortunate enough to have this job before graduation,‚ÄĚ Brady, 23, a Rochester Adams High School alumnus who attended Texas State University, says by phone. ‚ÄúThat was something I made a goal for myself in college, so it‚Äôs nice to see your goals realized. It made the prospect of graduating and showcasing in New York a little less stressful, which was wonderful.
‚ÄúI feel very lucky and very blessed already.‚ÄĚ
It also gave Brady a chance to take last summer off from the theater fray and work at Oakland Hills Country Club in Bloomfield Hills, where her father Steve Brady is the golf pro. ‚ÄúI‚Äôve always been a fan of day jobs because I think it gives you insight into a different realm of the world,‚ÄĚ she says. And having easy access to the links wasn‚Äôt bad, either.
‚ÄúI have a good swing, but I‚Äôve never been the biggest fan because my brother also golfs and I grew up in a golf-oriented home,‚ÄĚ explains Brady, the middle of three children. ‚ÄúI think I rebelled; ‚ÄėI‚Äôm gonna be an artist!‚Äô‚ÄĚ
That said, theater was not her lifelong goal.
Brady began ‚Äúdabbling‚ÄĚ in acting when she was in the eighth grade, joining a school production of ‚ÄúThe Made Adventures of Mr. Toad.‚ÄĚ She also started taking voice lessons and gradually realized, ‚ÄúWow, I can dance and I can sing and I can act all the time. For me, there was nothing better.‚ÄĚ
She was active in the Rochester Adams theater program as well as the school district‚Äôs summer productions, which Brady remembers as ‚Äúmy favorite times. It was really formative for me.‚ÄĚ But it wasn‚Äôt until she neared graduation that Brady decided on theater as a course of college study and a career.
‚ÄúI know a lot of people who are like, ‚ÄėI‚Äôm gonna be on Broadway!‚Äô from the age of four, but that wasn‚Äôt me,‚ÄĚ Brady says. ‚ÄúIt sort of developed over time, which to me is sort of beautiful. I‚Äôm definitely a logical person and theater wasn‚Äôt always logical. So I gave it a lot of thought, and as I grew up and I developed my talent I started to consider it more seriously.‚ÄĚ
Playing Audrey in ‚ÄúLittle Shop of Horrors‚ÄĚ her senior year proved to be Brady‚Äôs turning point. ‚ÄúIt was the first time I ever got my hands on a really meaty role,‚ÄĚ she recalls, ‚Äúand it was so much fun for me. That‚Äôs when I knew I wanted to be doing that forever and was going to go to college and do this thing.‚ÄĚ
Brady is certainly getting to know the lay of the land in ‚ÄúCinderella.‚ÄĚ Her roles include everything from a raccoon and a Lady of Ridicule to understudying for both the evil stepmother and the fairy godmother -- a good-evil yin-yang that keeps Brady on her toes.
‚ÄúI was very pleasantly surprised,‚ÄĚ Brady says. ‚ÄúThose are older roles, kind of 40-60, so I was kind of shocked when they brought me in for those. But it‚Äôs so much fun being able to do material that‚Äôs a little mature where I am in my life. I call them the two moms.‚ÄĚ
But regardless of which role she has on a given night, Brady says that the clock isn‚Äôt close to striking midnight for her in ‚ÄúCinderella.‚ÄĚ
‚ÄúTour life can get a little taxing, but there‚Äôs still nothing as magical as the show,‚ÄĚ she says. ‚ÄúWhen you think you‚Äôre done with the magic you look out in the audience and see a little girl dressed up as Elle freaking out over all the beautiful dress transformations and you‚Äôre like, ‚ÄėOmigosh, how could I have forgotten I‚Äôm part of this magical show.
‚ÄúThere‚Äôs just a great reminder every night about why we do this.‚ÄĚ
If You Go
‚ÄĘ ‚ÄúRogers + Hammerstein‚Äôs Cinderella‚ÄĚ
‚ÄĘ March 13-18
‚ÄĘ Fisher Theatre, 3011 W. Grand Blvd., Detroit.
‚ÄĘ Tickets are $26.25-$63.75
‚ÄĘ Call 313-872-1000 or visit broadwayindetroit.com
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