At age 12, a second Broadway role awaits in 'Fun Home'

AP News
Posted: Oct 06, 2015 10:55 AM
At age 12, a second Broadway role awaits in 'Fun Home'

NEW YORK (AP) — Taking over a big Broadway role? No problem. Replacing a Tony Award nominee? Sure. Doing both while not yet a teenager? No sweat — if you're Gabriella Pizzolo.

The 12-year-old understudy at "Fun Home" takes over the role of Young Alison on Tuesday at the Tony-winning show at the Circle in the Square Theatre.

Pizzolo, from upstate New York, has been carefully studying not only Sydney Lucas, who played Young Allison, she was also on standby to play the two boys in the show.

The poised young lady is a Broadway veteran, having made her debut at age 10 in "Matilda the Musical" in 2013. The Associated Press asked her about the new transition, acting like a boy and why she doesn't own one of the things most people can't live without.

The Associated Press: Are you enjoying "Fun Home"?

Pizzolo: It's such a great show and to be a young girl in a show that's so much about girl power and written by a lovely team of women is meaning a lot.

AP: The first time you went on was for one of the boys, right? How did it happen?

Pizzolo: One of the boys wasn't feeling well. He was like, 'OK, I don't think I can do this. So you're going to have to be on.' It was halfway through the show.

AP: What did you do at first?

Pizzolo: I was like, 'Oh, my gosh. I've got to check my script.' And everybody was so supportive and they helped me through. They said, 'You're going to be amazing!' They were helping me out a lot. Everybody helps each other. It's like a family.

AP: You share a dressing room with Sydney Lucas. Have you two discussed the role?

Pizzolo: We talk a lot. We've had lots of time to bond. I think it's going to be big shoes to fill, but I'm just going to try my best.

AP: When did you first realize you had this passion?

Pizzolo: I was in a talent show when I was really young and I said, 'Hey, I really love this!' I got involved in community theater and then lots of my friends were like, 'Oh, there's this new show called "Matilda." You could go down and audition.'

AP: What was the first Broadway show you saw?

Pizzolo: When I was 6, I saw 'The Little Mermaid.' That was amazing for me and I absolutely loved that. It was right about the time when I was like, 'Oh, I'm interested in this.'

AP: Have you had time to see any other shows this time?

Pizzolo: Yes, we just went to see 'Wicked.'

AP: If you stick around Broadway, might you want a role in it one day?

Pizzolo: I would love to, yes!

AP: Elphaba or Glinda?

Pizzolo: I really like Elphaba. I would be Glinda, though. They're pretty fun roles. They look like they're having a lot of fun.

AP: What's on your phone? What's a cool game?

Pizzolo: I don't have a phone. I don't really think that I need one. I have friends and family around me that I can talk to. If anybody wants to talk to me, they can always say, 'Hello.' I don't have a phone and I'm OK.