Meet Renae Lewis who is peforming in White Christmas

Lyric Arts had a chance to interview Renae Lewis, who is performing, as Tessie,  in White Christmas. Read on to hear what she has to say about her experience thus far!

LA: Tell us a little bit about why this particular play interested you?

RL: I am a huge Christmas fanatic. I have loved the movie and saw the Broadway musical in 2006. I am one of those people that watch the movie any time of the year. It just brings me a sense of happiness and we can forget the troubles of the world for a little bit of time.

LA: For those that are unfamiliar with White Christmas can you tell us about the show?

RL:It is the story of 2 Broadway guys that somehow find themselves at an inn in Vermont over Christmas. They come up with the bright idea to put on a show at the inn, they also include their new friends the Haynes sisters. There are a few twists that make the story humorous and interesting.

LA: Talk about the character that you play in White Christmas. How have you developed this character?

RL:I am playing the character of Tessie, she is the stage manager of the show being staged at Pine Tree Inn. Tessie seems to live in a state of exasperation all the time. I have never been an actual stage manager but I can imagine what it would be like to corral up to 60 people in a musical. That stresses me out just thinking about it.

LA: Why should people come and see White Christmas?

RL:We have such a great cast of talented people! Even if you don’t know the story, you will leave the building singing the songs and maybe even dancing a little bit. It will definitely put you in the holiday mood!

LA: Talk about your fellow cast members, how do you see their characters developing? Any that you are particularly amazed at?

RL: Everyone has done such a great job with their character development. People will instantly fall in love with Bob, Phil, Judy and Betty. I think everyone has taken time to really explore the little things about each character and made them their own. You will be amazed by Susan! She is a little dynamo.

LA: What do you feel are the "wow" elements of White Christmas?

RL: There are so many. All of the big group numbers are so great but I will say that Snow is one of my favorites.

LA: What is your favorite aspect of the show?

RL: I love the feeling of joy you get just from watching the characters come together.

LA: Tell us what is something that you are particular excited about this show coming to together? For example, a certain scene, costumes, set, lights, etc?

RL: I really can’t say because it would ruin the surprise.

LA: Are musicals easier or harder then straight show or comedies? If so, why?

RL: I think a lot of times musicals are more fun. You still get the character development as will a straight show but you also get to sing and dance.

LA: What is your favorite musical to watch? 

RL: Singing in the Rain and White Christmas are at the top

LA: What is your favorite thing to do around the holidays?

RL: I love going to the Macy’s display downtown and seeing the Hollidazzle parade. Making cookies while watching every Christmas movie I own.

LA: Which do you like better White Christmas the movie or the stage version?

RL: I love the movie but the stage version gives a little bit more depth to the characters.

LA: To date what is your favorite role that you have played and why?

RL: I had the opportunity to play The Sour Kangaroo in Seussical the Musical this summer. I had so much fun being sassy and we had such a great cast of people that made the show amazing.

LA: What is your dream character to play on stage? RL: Besides The Sour Kangaroo, I would love to play Eulalie in The Music Man again. And if there is ever a stage version of National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation, I want to play Aunt Bethany.