This month, Mandy Adleman, a senior at Roanoke College, will perform in her most challenging theater role yet. She plays Becca, one of the main characters in Theatre Roanoke College’s February performance of “Rabbit Hole,” a story about a picture perfect family whose lives are turned upside down by a tragic accident.
“Rabbit Hole” came to the big screen in 2010 in a drama film adaptation starring Nicole Kidman and Aaron Eckhart. The film received many awards nominations.
For Roanoke’s “Rabbit Hole” production, the audience sits on the stage surrounding the actors and actresses.
Adleman is a theater major and a New Jersey native. She spoke with us recently about her role in “Rabbit Hole” and her acting experience.
See Theatre Roanoke College’s “Rabbit Hole” on Feb. 20-23 at 7:30 p.m. in Olin Theater. Seating is limited. Purchase tickets here.
RC News Blog: Tell us about your character and her role in “Rabbit Hole.”
Mandy Adleman: The play is about a family grieving over the loss of their 4-year-old boy who was unfortunately killed. It starts several months after his death. The whole family is basically grieving over that. I play his mom, so it is particularly hard for me. I love to work to be a stay-at-home mom, and now I’m lost for what to do and lost for feelings. So it’s suspenseful and sounds really depressing, but it has a hopeful ending. We rehearse every single night except for Saturday.
RC News Blog: How and when did you first become involved with acting?
Mandy Adleman: I’ve loved acting my whole life since I was 4 years old. I’ve always wanted to do it. I did a couple of plays [in high school], but I didn’t really get into theater until college, and I decided to major in it. I like acting and playing a different character, because when I was little I would watch TV and want to be whatever I saw, like a doctor or a lawyer.
RC News Blog: For “Rabbit Hole,” what has been the most challenging part of your character? Did you have to do something in particular to help prepare for this character?
Mandy Adleman: Trying to relate to having a kid and then having the kid die is hard. This is my second play here. Honestly, the biggest challenge for me was changing my open-book personality to my character’s more reserved personality. She keeps things inside. [I have to] understand more about people who do hold everything in and try to get into that mindset.
RC News Blog: What are you going to miss the most about performing plays at Roanoke College? What are your plans for after graduation?
Mandy Adleman: I’m going to audition for the spring [TRC] show, too, but that is not definite yet. The college theater is so different, and it’s a learning process and the people you are working with are also learning. No one’s an expert, so it’s just really forgiving, and it helps you grow on your own, where in the real world they would just fire you. I plan on moving to L.A. or New York after I graduate, and I want to do theater and screening. I’m excited. It’s been a long time coming.
RC News Blog: Why should people see TRC’s “Rabbit Hole”?
Mandy Adleman: I love plays and movies that draw on your heartstrings and that you can relate to and even if you haven’t lost someone, you can relate to someone else in the play. It has something for everyone, and I think it has honesty, and it’s real, and you feel like you are a fly on the wall. It’s interesting to see what human emotions do to you at a time like this.
–By Shelby Sacco ’14
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