Meet the Cast of Rent: Megan Swaisland

Rent stages this week from Thurs until Sat at the Rhoda McGaw Theatre, Woking - go to our box office whilst seats are still available!

"Apart from the amazing choices of shows, Simply is such a loving company"

Rent has a vast array of characters, so many of our cast get to play multiple roles.

  Megan in rehearsal  (Photo courtesy of  Front of House Photography )

Megan in rehearsal (Photo courtesy of Front of House Photography)

Name: Megan Swaisland

Character Name(s)/Roles: Junkie and part-time stripper.

Tell us about your character(s) My characters are very interesting to play... both desperate for completely different reasons. My junkie character purely desperate for her next fix whereas my nightclub dancer is desperate to earn money to live. Buried deep beneath the desperation though is a heart of gold and just a young girl looking to find someone to take care of her. Someone who will never abandon her and be the angel in her life.

Is there anything in your own life that helps you connect with your character(s)?! I can't say I'm even remotely similar to my junkie character... However I can understand her desperation and determination to get something in her life. I'm on a gap year at the moment and auditioning for drama school, and although I won't be stripping in order to to get in, I would do just about anything for it. The only time I'm similar to my nightclub dancer is when I'm strutting (unconvincingly) around the dance floor in pop world. Though perhaps wearing a little more.

What’s your favourite song in the show and why? I absolutely LOVE 'Take Me or Leave Me'! It is so sassy and I just love watching Frankie and Maria diva it out on the stage. It also reflects my outlook on life - take me or leave me, I am the way I am. You can't go through life trying to change yourself for other people, no matter how much they mean to you, especially if that compromises the real you.

What other shows have you done? Oooo, lots! I was in 'Grease' last year with Simply Theatre - I played Jan... The one that eats full-time. It was fabulous because I got to eat twinkies for the whole show and be completely goofy. Pretty much me in general... I've also been in shows such as 'Parade', 'Whistle Down The Wind' and 'Cinderella'.

Can you recall a particularly memorable on-stage moment? I will never forget the moment when I was performing in my final GSA foundation showcase and I realised how lucky I was to be able to perform like this and with all these amazing people. It was a bit embarrassing because I was absolutely weeping. It's funny how companies can become so close so quickly. We're so fortunate in that we almost have a second family. I wouldn't change it for the world.

Can you remember the first time you thought “I want to be in theatre”? I will always remember the day I was sat watching 'Annie' on a rainy day in France, and I fell head over heels in love with Ann Reinking. Her dance in the yellow dress for 'We've got Annie' absolutely captivated me, and from then on I was hooked. I wanted to be like the lady in the floaty yellow dress.

What are you enjoying most about being part of Simply Theatre? Apart from the amazing choices of shows, Simply is such a loving company. Everyone is so so friendly and welcoming and we all clump together as a family. It's an honour to perform with not only immensely talented people, but also dear friends as well.

Is there room in your life for anything else apart from singing, dancing & acting? I'm afraid I'm pretty much a full time creative! If I'm not musical theatre-ing, I'm making a scrapbook or planning an amazing birthday present full of sparkles and pink things... I just like making stuff. Other than that, sleeping is high on the agenda.

No Day But Today