What is your favorite thing about your character?
My favorite thing about Claire is probably her sense of imagination. I realized she doesn't really have a defined identity because she's always trying to be someone else. She's always been under extremely controlling circumstances; she doesn't know how to be a relaxed person, so she turns everything into a show, a spectacle. It's kind of sad... I also love sketch comedy and have alter-ego characters that I pretend to be sometimes, so in that way I'm similar to her - but sane! It's fun to be playing her. It is serious acting, and it's also fun acting.
What is this play about from the perspective of your character?
That is a really hard question. I think the show is about Claire trying to please her sister, trying to get acceptance from her by helping her fulfill her fantasies. Solange clearly doesn't like Claire, and Claire wants nothing more than to please Solange, so by helping Solange commit this murder she has a chance to gain respect. Poor little Claire...
If you had some advice to offer your character what would it be?
Just be you, Claire! Claire has just got to do Claire. No... Stop hanging out with your sister! Go out and make some new friends who don't want to kill you.
What drew you to this play?
Getting to work with Stephen again! I'm also at a point in my life where I'm learning a lot about the way people are with each other, and the way they connect with their situation... so it helped me develop as a young person, as an actor... It's cool - that's such a teenager thing to say - it is a fascinating learning experience, it helps me further understand why humans are the way they are.
How did you get involved with Offstage?
Stephen got me involved because he did the show! And then offstage was like, hey, you're one of us now, and I say - Thanks Offstage!
What is the most challenging thing about performing in a site-specific environment?
The most challenging thing is not being afraid of the rest of the house because we're acting like this is the house of a murderer and the house is creepy. It is tough to go into parts and not feel like there's a murderer there. We've made it a scary, scary place.
What is your favorite food?
Spaghetti. I love Spaghetti. I wish i could move to Italy and eat spaghetti all the time.
What is you dream for the future?
I am going to be on SNL, and with all my money I'm going to save the world.
What is your favorite way to unwind after playing a difficult scene?
Ugh, magic tricks, featuring Stephen. And... snacks.
Come see Emma play Claire in The Maids, June 9 - 11 and 16-18 at 8:30pm.
Tickets $15 each, by reservation only.
All performances will take place at the historic McShane House, 209 Maury Ave., Charlottesville, VA.