Sunday, June 25, 2017

Taylor Hartsfield Stars in Theatre Aspen's "Hairspray"

This is pretty darn cool! She was our Kim McAfee in DMTC's 2011 "Bye, Bye Birdie"!:
The musical "Hairspray" changed Taylor Hartsfield's life, both professionally and personally. As the 23-year-old Los Angeles-based actress prepares to star in Theatre Aspen's summer production of the Broadway smash, she said, her long relationship with the show is coming full circle.

A recent graduate of California State University in Fullerton, Hartsfield is playing the lead role of the plump and plucky dance-show sensation Tracy Turnblad in Theatre Aspen's summer-long production of the endearingly upbeat tale of '60s nostalgia, racial integration and body-positivity. Previews begin today.

...Hartsfield's history with "Hairspray" goes back to when she was 15 and was cast in a community theater production in Northern California as an ensemble member.

"Then I hit puberty and all of a sudden I was Tracy-typed," she said with a laugh.

Her first run as Tracy was in a 2015 production at Chance Theater in Anaheim. That stripped-down version, without big sets and technical flourishes, forced her to immerse herself in the character and the message of "Hairspray." It was a transformative experience.

"It gave me a lot of insight beyond the fluff of what we see," she said, "into the story and how important it is. That changed my life in theater, because it changed my view of myself as a performer. My relationship with my family and friends blossomed because I was able to stop feeling so self-deprecating in this world that's all about your appearance and how you fit in."

Here is a picture from DMTC's 2011 "Bye, Bye Birdie"!:

"How Lovely To Be A Woman": Taylor Hartsfield as Kim McAfee.

More photos:

Final dress rehearsal

Wednesday night tech week rehearsal

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