She Loves Me is a wonderful show, and one of my favorites. I also love Next to Normal, Once, and Aida.
I'd love to play Elle Woods in Legally Blonde the Musical someday--an underestimated and extremely complex character. She has an amazing arc and evolution that would be a dream to play.
Theatre has taught me what it means to accept, respect and understand people. By learning your characters motives, you begin to realize why people in the real world act the way they do.
When I first started at AYT, I suffered from intense anxiety and obsessive compulsive disorder. Acting gave me the chance to live as someone else for awhile, and I truly believe it saved my life. I began to become comfortable in my own skin by becoming comfortable in the skins of the characters I played.
I love theatre because it's a transformative experience. It connects with people, and reveals all of their hidden secrets, fears, hopes and dreams through the story they're watching. It's inspiring.
While every AYT experience has always been a favorite memory, my time in Les Miserables was undeniably special. I was moved daily by the talent and passion that surrounded me. It was an absolute gift of a show.
My life plans:
This fall I will be attending the Carnegie Mellon School of Drama as an Acting major, and after my schooling is over I plan to pursue a career on Broadway and in film and television. Acting is my passion in any medium, so wherever I can be doing that, that's where I'll be.
Lisa McMann - Kennedy’s Mom
Marcus gave Kennedy her first shot in The Three Musketeers when she was nine, where Kennedy remembers making her first real "choice" as an actor. It's been full speed ahead since then. I think she's done at least 10 shows with AYT and she's learned something from each of them. Like in Thoroughly Modern Millie she learned that even if the set crashes behind you, you just keep dancing. That metaphorical lesson in itself has served her well.
As she grew older, she had bigger roles, more lines, and after years of looking up to the main characters, she became one of them: Macbeth, The Scarlet Pimpernel, and most recently Guenevere in Camelot--her first actual lead in a musical.
Kennedy discovered that theatre kids are friends for life--that's one huge benefit of doing local youth theatre. Being involved in organized entertainment/performance taught Kennedy tons of important skills (memorization, time management, responsibility). She also learned that most actors play smaller parts (sometimes for years) before they find a lead role that is the right fit for them. Fit is such a difficult concept to grasp. I think Kennedy learned some of that that through her auditions for college and in youth theatre.
Theatre is Kennedy's life. Being involved with AYT whet her appetite for the Broadway stage. She recently went through an extremely intensive year auditioning for some of the top theatre colleges and universities in the nation, which are highly selective, because she wants to be an actor for life. We're all grateful here at our house that she got several incredible acceptances. She'll be attending one of the most prestigious drama schools in the US this fall-- Carnegie Mellon University.
Over the past 8 years I've seen Kennedy grow into a responsible, dedicated, driven actor who strives to succeed at life--not just in acting.
I'm very grateful for the constant support and encouragement from everyone who works in youth theatre. I'm sure sometimes working with kids must feel like a difficult battle, but I hope those who put forth the effort to help and encourage these kids will realize just what an incredible difference they make in the lives of young actors. Kristin and Chris, Julie, Marcus, Andrea, Erin--you have all made a wonderful impact and we appreciate you.