MASC’s ‘Alice’ thinking beyond Wonderland - Republic-Times | News

MASC’s ‘Alice’ thinking beyond Wonderland

By on November 22, 2017 at 10:00 am

Gibault junior Isabella Garcia acts out a scene during the recent Monroe Actors Stage Company production of “Alice in Wonderland”at the Capitol Theatre in Waterloo. (Dave Philip photo)

Gibault Catholic High School student Isabella Garcia has a penchant for acting, and it showed with her recent performance in the Monroe Actors Stage Company production of “Alice in Wonderland.”

The high school junior took on the persona of Alice the past two weekends. Garcia’s talent hasn’t gone unnoticed, as she has been accepted into the American Musical and Dramatic Academy in Los Angeles.

“Her dream school is AMDA. She attended a two-week camp this past summer and had an opportunity to audition for admission to the school,” her father, Brian Garcia, said. “We said, ‘Sure kiddo, go for it,’ thinking it would be a good experience.  Little did we know!”

The AMDA is an art school that focuses on acting, music theater, dance theater and performing arts. Isabella will study acting at the school and pursue a career in movies and television.

“I really like it. I went to a camp there over the summer,” she said. “It’s got a great learning environment, and I met some of the teachers. They’re really nice.”

Isabella Garcia acts out a scene during the recent Monroe Actors Stage Company production of “Alice in Wonderland.” (Dave Philip photo)

Fresh out of college, she will take “anything I can get,” with a larger long-term goal.

“Eventually, my ultimate dream would be to be in a superhero movie. I just think that would be really cool to be a superhero,” Isabella said.

Gibault principal Russ Hart heard of her recent accomplishment and didn’t seem the least bit surprised.

“Isabella is so talented and humble,” he said.

During a rehearsal for the “Alice in Wonderland” play, there was no denying her acting ability. The young and budding actress could be seen flawlessly running through the script, never asking for her lines. 

“What I like to do if I can is highlight lines in different colors and mark the pages,” she said. “If I can’t do any highlighting, I’ll use colored tabs. 

“And I’ll run through the lines a bunch of times. I’ll start out with little pieces, then keep running through a whole scene or an act until I get it down.” 

“Alice in Wonderland” director Matt Dossett said her method worked well in keeping the production running smoothly.

“She’s outstanding! She made it very easy to rest the show on her shoulders,” Dossett said.

Isabella also recently performed as Eve in Gibault’s production of “The Wisdom of Eve,” as Kim McAfee in MASC’s “Bye Bye Birdie,” and was Cosette in The Actor’s Attic production of “Les Miserables.”

Though seeming a bit modest, Isabella agreed she shows potential in her performances.

“I think I’m good. I like to really analyze the character and immerse myself in the role,” she said, adding, “I like becoming different characters and just being able to learn how they function and feel their emotions.

“It helps me understand people better in everyday life. Every character is different, but with Alice, I’ve gone into the mindset of a little kid because this was actually written for a young girl.

“But she’s really smart. She loves to read a lot of books in a period where it’s not as common for girls to read. She is very logical in how she views the world. 

“Everything around her is real weird, and the other characters pick on her a bit. I feel like that helps me deal with people not understanding me or making fun of me.”

Sean McGowan

Sean is a die-hard Cubs fan, despite the relentless peer pressure coming from the rest of the Republic-Times staff. He and his wife, Jacqui, have been married for two years. Originally from the west suburbs of Chicago, Sean and his wife moved down to Normal to attend Illinois State University and stayed central Illinois residents for the past four years.