Thursday, November 14, 2013

Six Questions with "4000 Miles'" Klarissa Mesee

As Amanda in 4000 Miles, Klarissa Mesee makes a memorable impression with her ditzy humor and hilarious portrayal of a hipster art student. A graduate of UCLA and also a current cast member at "The Happiest Place on Earth," Mesee answers our six questions for MyStage, SCR's discounted ticket program for those 15-to-25 years old.

Klarissa Mesee
Your character, Amanda, is a scene-stealer! Is humor difficult to do successfully?

Mesee: I think the key to doing humor successfully is to play honestly. 4000 Miles is so well written that the humor is already there. So all you have to do is say the lines as honestly as the character would in the moment. Timing is also gotta have good timing.

You graduated from The Ray Bolger Musical Theater program at UCLA. How different is it to be working on a play like 4000 Miles at SCR in comparison to a musical?
Mesee: The coolest thing about the program was that I had the opportunity to study and perform in plays as well as musicals. The biggest difference to me is how they're structured from conception, rehearsals and performing. A musical is really structured. You have notes to sing and marks you need to hit. Everything has to be consistent every night, just the energy changes. In a play, you have a lot more freedom to create your world. There’s a dialogue between actors and directors and it's more collaborative. We get to explore the scenes and discover new things every night.

What are some of your dream roles in the theatre?

Mesee: I have so many roles I'd love to play! But to name a few: any and all of the 6 Merry Murderesses in Chicago (the play or the musical). Kim in Miss Saigon, Marta in Company and just for fun, even though it'll never happen, Leaf Coneybear in The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee.

Mesee and Matt Caplan in 4000 Miles
You're also currently performing in Mickey and the Magical Map at Disneyland. What is it like balancing work on that show and 4000 Miles at the same time?

Mesee: I was really lucky to have two projects that I loved so much and that couldn't have been more different! I enjoy keeping busy and when you're doing something you love as an actor and as a singer, you really don't mind not having a day off for a couple months.

Why do you love theatre?

Mesee: I love theater because it's live and it's real. You can't fake anything in the theater. There isn't an edit button or any do-overs and that’s what makes it exciting. Not only has an actor but as an audience member as well.

Why do you think our MyStage members will enjoy 4000 Miles?

Mesee: They will enjoy it because it's engaging and it flows. It's a great play about growing up, maturing and what that means to each character. I think everyone will find something in the play that they can identify with.

See Klarissa now in 4000 Miles, which closes this Sunday! Follow her on Instagram: @MissKlariss.

More About MyStage

MyStage is a special program designed for 15- to-25-year-olds. Members get a special discount, $10 tickets for shows at South Coast Repertory. It’s like student rush, but you can get great seats by purchasing tickets up to a month in advance! Members also get access to exclusive social events and behind-the-scenes updates.

Ready to join? It’s free and easy to sign up. Just e-mail the following to
  • Full Name:
  • Address:
  • Phone Number:
  • Birthday and Year:
  • Email (not your parents’):
  • School Attending (if applicable):

Buy tickets. MyStage members get $10 tickets to 4000 Miles using code 8875.

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