The magic of Toronto's Princess of Wales Theatre came to visit our Salt + Light studio... and I was fortunate to be around to experience it. Though the veils were off, it was impossible to not recognize the joy filled laughter of Elicia Mackenzie and Noëlla Huet from across the office the minute they walked in. What was especially beautiful was to discover that meeting the women behind the wondrous characters of Maria Rainer (Von Trapp) and the Mother Abbess was not unlike the experience of watching them perform onstage. Their real life personas maintain the joy and sincerity of the characters they inhabit the minute the curtain lifts. Another fun observation was to realize how their onstage chemistry far from wears off once the orchestra has played its last note.
Watching their interaction as special guests on our signature Witness
program, you couldn’t help but notice the bonds of a true friendship where the two actresses draw continuous support from one another both on and off the stage. It was also touching to hear Noëlla share with Fr. Thomas Rosica how she draws inspiration for her character from her aunt, a real life religious, who loved, guided and encouraged her throughout her difficult childhood years. Elicia shared in turn her fairy tale-like experience auditioning for the role of Maria on a nationally televised reality TV show and the delight she feels playing a role in spreading a message of love, hope and courage in the search for one’s calling in life. I’ll stop there so as to not give too much away. If you want to learn more about Noëlla’s incredible career journey, how she draws strength from her onstage character and how Elicia identifies with the person of Maria, don’t miss this upcoming Witness episode airing this Sunday, December 21st at 8:30pm and 12:30am ET.