100 Creatives 2013: Erin Wasmund, Actor, Singer and Dancer
Bayou City Theatrics recently mounted a dual-cast production of Les Misérables. One cast sang in the traditional Broadway musical style; the other cast sang in a pop/rock style. Woodlands native Erin Wasmund played Eponine in the traditional cast. Eponine, a street-wise teen, falls hopelessly in love with Marius, one of the story's young resistance leaders. After he rejects her for Cosette, Eponine goes on to save him in battle. It was a role the Florida State University graduate relished. Not only does Eponine have a dramatic death scene, she sings two of the show's most emotionally powerful songs ("On My Own" as she realizes Marius is in love with someone else and "A Little Fall of Rain" as she lays dying in Marius's arms having just saved his life).
"Eponine is me when I was 16," Wasmund tells us. "It was really interesting to me to revisit my 16-year-old self. I was so tomboyish, and so not feminine." And, of course, she suffered a real-life unrequited love. "She really reflected a lot of me."
What She Does: Wasmund has two objectives when she's on stage. One, to bring life to her character. And two, to ignore the audience.
Erin Wasmund as Audrey in the Bayou City Theatrics production of Little Shop of Horrors
"Really, I try not to think about you guys," she laughs. "In theater, you're given certain circumstances - where you are, what you are, what day is it, and the fact that an audience is always watching you. You can always feel the energy from the audience. When you're giving an honest performance and staying true and honest to the work, they're going to go with you, but that can't be my focus. With Eponine, the one thing that I wanted, was to be held by [Marius]. I get that only after I'm mortally wounded, but that's all I care about in that moment. You're all there watching but he's the one who can give me what I want."
Why She Likes It: "It's not about performing, it's something more than that. I'm attracted to the story's characters, to the life of the play. I get really obsessed with the research process and then the rehearsal process. I love research, rehearsal and creating relationships."
What Inspires Her: "I think this is what I was meant to do. It's great to bring life to those characters, to find some part of the character that's also me. I love watching other people create, that's inspiring to me."
If Not This, Then What: "If I couldn't have anything to do with musical theater, but I would still know what it is and still love it? I would die," she says without hesitation. "I would die.
"If I didn't love theater or didn't know what it is, there are a hundred things I would love to do. I would love to be a marine biologist, a paleontologist, an archeologist. I would love to do a dig in Africa. I would love to visit China. I would want be an English teacher; I'm a real grammar Nazi. I would want to be a mom. There are hundreds of things I would love to do and I get to do them as an actor."
If Not Here, Then Where: "New York," she replies quickly. I wouldn't like the competition. I'm super competitive when it comes to games and that sort of thing, but I don't like competition when I walk into a room.The opportunity for an actor is there. The city is beautiful, it has such an energy and there's so much to do."
What's Next: Wasmund is performing in the Bayou City Theatrics Halloween production of The Rocky Horror Show, a special one-night-only presentation.
More Creatives for 2013
(In order of most recently published; click here for the full page).
Karim Al-Zand, composer
Jan Burandt, paper conservator for The Menil Collection
Deke Anderson, actor
Craig Cohen, hockey fan and host of Houston Matters
Mauro Luna, Poe-Inspired photographer
Trond Saeverud, Galveston Symphony Orchestra music director and conductor
Khrystyna Balushka, paper flower child
Christina Carfora, visual artist and world traveler
Sara Kumar, artistic director for Shunya Theatre
Kiki Maroon, burlesque clown
Gin Martini, fashion designer
Lacey Crawford, painter and sculptor
Homer Starkey, novelist
Jenn Fox, mixed media Shohei Iwahama, dancer
Erica DelGardo, metalsmith
Bob Clark, executive director Houston Family Arts Center
Kerrelyn Sparks, bestselling romance author
Lindsay Halpin, punk rock mad hatter
Drake Simpson, actor
Shelby Carter, Playboy model turned photographer
David Matranga, actor
Crystal Belcher, pole dancer
Daniel Kramer, photographer
Blue 130, pin-up explosion art
Nina Godiwalla, author and TED speaker
David Wilhem, light painter
Tom Abrahams, author and newscaster
Browncoat, pin-up pop artist
Kris Becker, Nu-Classical composer and pianist
Vincent Fink, science fashion
Stephanie Saint Sanchez, Senorita Cinema founder
Ned Gayle, thrift store painting defacer
Sameera Faridi, fashion designer
Greg Ruhe, The Human Puppet
Sophia L. Torres, founder and co-artistic director of Psophonia Dance Company
Maggie Lasher, dance professor and artistic director
Jordan Jaffe, founder of Black Lab Theatre
Outspoken Bean, performance poet
Barry Moore, architect
Josh Montoute, mobile gaming specialist
Ty Doran, young actor
Gwen Zepeda, Houston's first Poet Laureate
Joseph Walsh, principal dancer at Houston Ballet
Justin Garcia, artist
Buck Ross, dilettante and director of Moores Opera Center
Patrick Renner, sculptor of the abstract and the esoteric
Tomas Glass, abstract artist and True Blood musician
Ashley Stoker, painter, photographer and Tumblr muse
Amy Llanes, artistic airector of Rednerrus Feil Dance Company
Bevin Bering Dubrowski, executive director at the Houston Center for Photography
Lydia Hance, founder and director of Frame Dance Productions
Piyali Sen Dasgupta, mixed media artist and nature lover
Dean James, New York Times bestselling mystery novelist
Nicola Parente, abstract painter and photographer
Cheryl Schulke, handmade leather pursemaker
Anthony Rathbun, Alternative Lifestyle Photographer
David Salinas, computer-less analog photographer
Danielle Burns, art curator
Alicia DiRago, Whimseybox founder
Katia Zavistovski, contemporary art curator
Ashley Horn, choreographer, filmmaker
Amanda Stevens, scary book author
Peter Lucas, film and video curator, music lover and self-described culture-slinger
Ana MarÃa Otamendi, collaborative pianist and vocal coach
Billy D. Washington, comedian
Michele Brangwen, choreographer and dancer
Kristin Warren, actress and choreographer
Kelly Sears, animator and film maker
Colton Berry, Bayou City Theatrics' artistic director
jhon r. stronks,dance-maker
Joe Grisaffi, actor, director, writer, cinematographer