Tak­ing the lead role

The Western Star - - FRONT PAGE - BY GINA HART­MANN

Erin Small­wood speaks on her up­com­ing performance as Roxie Heart in “Chicago”.

When Erin Small­wood au­di­tioned out for one of the lead roles in “Chicago,” she wasn’t ex­pect­ing to get the part.

“I de­cided to chal­lenge my­self by par­tic­i­pat­ing in a dif­fer­ent for­mat,” said the Corner Brook mother of three. “I put my­self out there. I still can’t be­lieve I au­di­tioned, let alone that it opens in a (few days).”

Small­wood will play Roxie Hart. It’s her first time in a lead­ing role. With a back­ground in mostly cho­rus work and dance performance, she is look­ing for­ward to the change in scenery.

“This is brand new for me in terms of act­ing and singing,” she said. “I’m ter­ri­fied, but more ex­cited to share it with an au­di­ence. I still feel like I’m in an al­ter­nate re­al­ity.”

Her hus­band, Mark, who will play the part of Billy Flynn, will join Small­wood on­stage.

They are both doc­tors by day, but the en­tire fam­ily is im­mersed in musical theatre.

“We re­ally en­joy the artis­tic life,” she said. “It’s an es­cape from the heav­i­ness of work. I love my ca­reer and this, and we don’t have to give up one for the other.

Theatre is also a stress re­liever, and a nice di­ver­sion from re­al­ity, she added.

Small­wood has been in­volved in Off-Broad­way Play­ers shows in the past, mainly as a dancer, but re­cently did some be­hind-the-scenes stage work.

She grew up in Kel­li­grews, where she was in­volved in theatre, mainly through dance and cabaret, which in­cluded a part in Tada Pro­duc­tion’s ren­di­tion of “Chicago,” be­fore mov­ing to Corner Brook 10 years ago.

“I can’t imag­ine liv­ing any­where else. It’s a beau­ti­ful place to raise kids, she said. “The arts scene is so rich. It’s so won­der-

ful to be in a place that gets in­volved in a pro­duc­tion.”

“Chicago” was writ­ten by Fred Ebb and Bob Fossee, and

is be­ing di­rected by Stephen Per­chard.

SUB­MIT­TED PHOTO

Erin Small­wood is play­ing the role of Roxie Hart in the musical pro­duc­tion “Chicago.”

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