Today I’m lucky enough to speak with the joyously wonderful actress
Tell us a little about your training,
I grew up with Jacques Demi and Michel Legrand. It’s actually “les parapluies de Cherbourg” that gave me the desire to do musicals.I attented the Paris school for musicals just after my baccalaureate. I studied there for three years.I got lucky because just after I graduated the director of the school put up a musical “Hairspray” and offered me a role in it.Then I did Symphonia, in the Festival d’Avignon. It’s an eco musical, to help kids get aware of waste and recycling.Then I auditioned and got a part in Kids Manoir II. This was a bigger show and had a run for 6 months. I did two seasons with that show.Now I’m working on Raiponce. It’s the second season. We’re moving from the espace Cardin to a much bigger theatre, the Theatre de la Porte Saint-Martin. It’s starting in October.Besides kids musical I’ve been lucky to join the cast of “Round the World in Eighty Days” at the Theatre du Splendid. It’s in its tenth season now. I’m playing Aouda the Indian princess. There’s a little bit of singing but this is mostly acting.
In 2012 I co-wrote a play wit Jean-Renaud Fabriès. It was a great experience.
I’ve been very lucky because since I’ve graduated I’ve never had any low periods without work.
Do you have a particular life style as a singer,
When I’m doing a Musical, my life style is truly important. I try to sleep well, drink water and avoid dairy product, especially if I need to be singing every night. I also must avoid drinking too much, as alcohol dries up your throats and so you can damage your voice.
Can you describe you training as a singer.
I take a class every week and at home, I’m singing one hour a day. Twenty minutes of vocal exercises and then I work on some songs. I don’t do much more than one hour. Though sometimes it’s difficult to stop because I want to get this note just right and it’s not working and so I know, because I’ve done it before, if I carry on, I’ll get frustrated and stressed and might just hurt my voice. So I’ve learned that one hour makes efficient and good training. I’m working a lot towards audition. I need to have a French pop song, a French musical song and the same in English. In my school I had the good fortune to have teacher, Marina Albert, who taught us how important it was to have a song in every style, like the 1920s, the 30s and so on, so if asked you could perform anything.
When I audition sometimes I’m asked to sing a song of my choosing. Sometimes they send you the material.
Do you think the Musicals have finally gain respect on the Parisian scene?
Not quite. I feel that in France we forget that in the term Musical Comedy, there’s the comedy as in acting that is equally as important. So you get wonderful singers who don’t really know how to act or dance. To find someone who can do all three really well like in England or the USA is still hard to come by. So Musical comedies in Paris suffer from that.To work on that aspect I personally take singing lesson on a weekly basis. I also take dance lessons, and I do workshops in acting.
Also in England it’s a proper job to be acting in a musical comedy, here it seems you do that for lack of better things. In England they have big companies, with alternate casts, and means, whether financial or technical that explain why the musicals are such a great hit. But things are slowly changing with Stage Entertainment. They offer great shows, with advance technique and that’s brilliant.
I’ve mostly done musicals for kids. It’s fine but I’d love to do also “grown up” stuff, with a bigger crew.
Have you auditioned for Stage Entertainment?
I’ve auditioned for them but it’s a tough process. For the audition of “Beauty and the Beast”, I got the acting scene five minutes before auditioning. I could go and act with the paper on stage, but still that was quite a challenge. I have to confess I actually like that because you have to be there, present a hundred percent.
And it’s also a really long process. The first three or four turns they are just so many people you just go through the process without thinking of it too much. But after that, you realise you’re a lot less and you can’t help but hope. And of course when you’re cut after the 7th turn it hurts. Even though I know I shouldn’t put myself into question I can’t help but do that. Though I shouldn’t because they are so many parameters that come into account: How your voice sounds with this male voice, you’re a brunet and they need a blond, they need someone tall and you’re only five feet. And so on.
Would you like to do straight acting as well?
I’d love to but I don’t feel quite ready. Plus auditions in acting are below the surface. So if you don’t have good connections it’s difficult to know who’s looking for an actress. My objectif this year is to get an agent to help me in that process.
What does the future hold for you?
I’ll be performing in “Raiponce” from 3rd October, and I’m still acting in “Round the World in Eighty Days.” So I have a fairly busy start of the season. I’m pretty lucky.
Thank you Margot for this interview and break a leg with “Raiponce”.