Lyric Arts had a chance to interview Agnieszka Oszast, who is performing in Cabaret. Read on to hear what she has to say about her experience thus far! LA: Where are you originally from? AO: I am originally from Duluth, MN. I go to school at UMD, but am home in Coon Rapids for the summer.
LA: Why did this particular play interest you? AO: I enjoy this play because there are so many different ways to produce the play and there’s so much throughout the play (within characters, relationships, intentions) that can be broken down and dug into.
LA: For those that are unfamiliar with Cabaret can you tell us about the show? AO: It is a show set in Berlin in the 1930’s and begins in the Kit Kat Klub, a cabaret led by the Master of Ceremonies (Emcee) where you can “leave your troubles outside!” At the top of the show the Emcee tells you to “forget it! In here life is beautiful.” As the story progresses you begin to realize the terrifying power the Nazis are accumulating, and even between the many entertaining song and dance numbers, it begins to affect each of the characters, one by one.
LA: Talk about the character(s) that you play in Cabaret. How have you developed this character? AO: I am playing Fraulein Kost, who is a prostitute that rents at Fraulein Schneider’s boarding house. More and more, as rehearsals are progressing, I’m beginning to realize the true characteristics of Kost. It’s easy to play her as the comic relief. What’s more difficult is to understand that she has dreams and aspirations, and yearns for love, just as much as anyone else.
LA: Talk about your fellow cast. How do you see their characters developing? Any that you are particularly amazed at? AO: I’m fascinated by each and every person in the cast! We’re all gradually developing our characters more and more and each day there is another layer of detail that adds to the character, the relationships between one another and the show as a whole.
LA: What are some of the most impressive elements of Cabaret? AO: The fact that the Kit Kat Klub stage is literally the set of the show will be an interesting thing to incorporate into the show, especially when the Kit Kat dancers are performing.
LA: What is your favorite number of the show? AO: My favorite number in the show is The Money Song. Not only is it catchy and fun to dance, but the underlying theme is important as well.
LA: What is something you are particularly excited about for this show? For example, a certain scene, costumes, set, lights, etc? AO: Each of these things (set, lights, costumes, sound) will bring a whole new layer of excitement into the show and I’m excited for everything to be put together because it will definitely set the tone of the show.
LA: Are musicals easy or harder to act than other types of theater? Why is this? AO: The approach of tackling a musical is very different from straight acting. To me, musicals are more difficult because when including the singing and dancing aspect of a musical, unfortunately, it’s very easy to dismiss the characters as stale.
LA: What is your favorite musical (in theater) to watch? AO: I saw a really fantastic production of Parade a couple of years ago and it’s stuck with me ever since. I only hope that someday I can be involved with a production of Parade.
LA: Please tell us a little bit about yourself? AO: I am going to school at The University of Minnesota Duluth as a BFA Musical Theatre Major. I love performing, playing sports and playing video games, cooking and baking, camping and being outdoors in general!
LA: What is your all-time favorite karaoke song? AO: I would say “Build Me Up, Buttercup” by the Foundations or anything by Aerosmith. Don’t laugh at me.
LA: What was the first musical you ever saw on stage? AO: The first musical I ever saw was Oklahoma.