#BehindtheCurtain: Get to Know Megan Greer and Eleni Stavros
Urinetown officially opens this weekend, and we can’t wait for audiences to fall in love with its quick wit, satirical charm, and quirky characters. Two of the stars behind those characters that we can’t wait to introduce are Megan Greer and Eleni Stavros! Megan, who is making their SDMT debut in this production, plays the role of the cutthroat Caldwell B. Cladwell, the shows main antagonist. Eleni, also a new face to the SDMT Stage, plays the role of Penelope Pennywise, the jaded overseer of the city’s worst public toilet. Both Megan and Eleni are currently pursuing degrees in performance, and we’re so lucky to have them sharing their talents with us for this production. They truly bring their characters to life on stage, so if you haven’t yet purchased a ticket for Urinetown make sure you do before we sell out! In the meantime, keep reading below to get to know Megan and Eleni a little better by finding out their answers to some of our favorite questions.
What inspired you to get into musical theatre?
Megan: “When I was in 6th grade, I’m went to go support some of my friends in a production of the classic show, The Wizard of Oz! And just like in every theatre origin story, all the singing and dancing woke up something in me and made we want to get in on the action! After some much needed encouragement, I auditioned for my first show and the rest is history!”
Eleni: “For me, I grew up loving theatre as a hobby and recreation, but it wasn’t until high school and college that I really began to see the impact of theatre and the performing arts. I originally began doing theatre because I enjoyed the thrill of performing onstage and making people smile, but my newfound inspiration for doing theatre as an adult is the power of storytelling. There is so much to be learned from creating and seeing a show, and I truly feel that the theatre experience is invaluable. Theatre not only offers the chance to share stories, but also to receive them, and I feel that the connection between the theatre-makers and the theatre-goers is a connection like no other.”
Does Urinetown have any special meaning to you? If you could tell the audience anything about this show, what would it be?
Megan: “Urinetown is my first production since my senior year of high school. I took a brief hiatus to transition into my college life at Sac State, so Urinetown has been my opportunity to remind myself of the magic of musical theatre and to welcome the unmatched joy that comes from creating back into my life. If I could tell the audience anything about the show, I would say pay attention to the small details. There’s so many hilarious Easter eggs and bits scattered throughout the show that when I catch them I can’t help but burst out laughing!”
Eleni: “I agree! It has been an absolute blast to work with this team on such a silly production! While Urinetown is a comedy at its core, I also feel there is a lot to be learned from the show about conservation, capitalism, and the power of community. Through the many jokes, references, and comedic bits in this show, lies a lot of heart and a thought-provoking story that will hopefully get the audience thinking about these characters and their journey even after they leave the walls of the theatre.”
Who is your Broadway idol?
Eleni: “This is a solid two way tie between Audra McDonald and Stephanie J Block. I admire them for their talent and approach to storytelling, of course, but more so for their humility and heart. Like many “Broadway legends,” both of these women have countless accolades and successes in theatre, but what makes them stand out to me is their constant kindness and composure. If I had the opportunity to meet or work with one of these women in the future, I would be incredibly honored.”
Megan: “It’s an easy answer for me; I’d for sure say Stephanie J Block too!”
What is your favorite scene or number in the show?
Eleni: “My favorite number to perform is “Privilege to Pee” at the top of Act I because I love connecting with each of the actors onstage and sinking my teeth into the role of Pennywise. My favorite number to watch is “Snuff That Girl” in Act II. Not only is the song catchy and well sung, but the choreography by Xavier J Bush is absolutely fabulous, and extremely well danced by this cast. I love to watch it from the wings of the stage, and I know that the crowd will go crazy when they see that number!”
Megan: “I’d have to say my favorite is probably “Run, Freedom Run!” It’s such an upbeat, fun song I can’t help but dance a little bit when I’m singing in the wings!”
What is your dream role or dream show to be a part of?
Megan: “In the same vein as my idol, I’ve dreamed of doing a production of William Finn’s Falsettos as Trina!”
Eleni: “Right now at my age, I would love to play Petra in A Little Night Music. I am a massive Stephen
Sondheim fan, and I would love to be a part of that show with such iconic songs and fun characters. In the future, I would love to play Mrs. Lovett in Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street and Mama Rose in Gypsy. Both of these characters are extremely complex and their stories would certainly be a challenge, but also an honor to tell.”
This show deals with a government restriction of toilet use. If you were to lead a dramatic revolution, what future restriction would you be fighting to end? Maybe an imposed limit of iced coffees? Or perhaps the government control of pet ownership?
Eleni: “Considering that I’ve been waiting for Bridgerton Season 3 for over a year, I would fight to abolish having to wait for television! I know everyone has a show that they are itching to get their hands on the next season (Stranger Things, Yellowstone, The Morning Show, etc), and my biggest annoyance is when networks release a show one episode at a time! I can’t wait that long to find out what happens next! Realistically, I know television shows take a lot of work, but I also suspect networks withhold the finished product for longer than they need to just to make us wait.”
Megan: “If the government tried to limit how often I went to Trader Joe’s, I would be at the forefront of the revolution. Ever since I went off to my first year of college, I can’t escape the grip that Trader Joe’s has on me! You can catch me there at least once a week restocking on chocolate covered bananas or chili lime chips, so if anyone tried to restrict that I would be the loudest voice in the room. (Although an iced coffee limit would probably be a close second, I’m always walking into rehearsal with an iced coffee).”
What’s been your favorite memory you’ve shared so far with your castmates?
Megan: “There is a Japanese market just down the street from SDMT- my favorite memory would have to be when a few cast members and I piled into my car during our lunch break and went to get snacks! It was very spontaneous and rushed so we could be back on time but super fun too.”
Eleni: “I’d definitely have to say mine was from right around the beginning of the second week of rehearsals. A few of my castmates brought in digital film cameras to rehearsal and began photographing the process and our breaks whenever possible. Nearly two weeks later, I would garner to say that we have over a hundred photos capturing our silliness and love for each other. Aside from the fun we have onstage, we also have a great deal of fun offstage, and I think that our mutual respect and admiration for each other is evident, if not onstage, then through our collection of photos.”
What are your dreams for the future?
Megan: “I aspire to keep theatre in my life however I can. I dream of living a life full of prosperity and art where I can keep the joy of musical theatre in my life, whether that means off stage or on! I recently added a Theatre BA to my educational pathway to hopefully find my way into a theatre career.”
Eleni: “I also hope to keep theatre in my future! My ultimate dream is to write a piece of theatre and be in it. In addition to my background as a performer, I have also in recent years begun to explore writing for theatre and I really enjoy it. I admire theatre artists such as Lin-Manuel Miranda and Phoebe Waller-Bridge for writing stories that are not only personal to them, but to many audience members who see themselves in their narratives. I think there are a lot of gaps in musical theatre, and theatre in general, as to what stories still haven’t been told yet, and I would like to be a part of filling those gaps both as an actor and a writer.”
Urinetown Creative Team:
Co-Director and Music Director: Van Angelo
Co-Director and Choreographer: Xavier J. Bush
CLICK HERE to buy tickets!