STEPHANIE DIFIORE

Age 12. Role: Louisa, 13.

The Washington Post Sunday - - THEATER -

How does this Westchester, N. Y., per­former stay healthy through win­ter and spring on buses, planes and in ho­tels?

“I use the neti pot,” Stephanie says of the nasal ir­ri­ga­tion sys­tem that, for some peo­ple, takes nerve to use. (Go ahead. Pour a pint of sa­line wa­ter up your nose.) “I was scared. But it works so well, and that’s the rea­son I haven’t missed a show yet. I also gar­gle.”

Basketball and soft­ball are on hold for the ath­letic Stephanie while she tours. Per­for­mance-wise, she was ready for the road, but she says, “it gets tricky with home­work. We have a shorter amount of time than the kids back home, but we have to do the same amount of work. By the time we get back to school, we have to be ready to go to the next grade. Some­times it’s stress­ful.”

Get­ting ev­ery­thing right on­stage “takes a long time,” she says. In “The Lonely Goatherd,” “sim­ply mov­ing that bed — you guys think we’re just mov­ing a bed. That took like five re­hearsals to get it per­fectly moved to a per­fect spot.” Still, she says, “the kids ac­tu­ally have fun. Es­pe­cially ‘Goatherd.’ It’s not even like it’s a job.”

It is a job, and the kind she’d like to keep pur­su­ing on stage and screen. “I want to keep it up un­til I guess I get bored with it,” Stephanie says. “As of now, I want to keep go­ing, be­cause it’s re­ally fun.”

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