Sophomore discusses her role as Anne Frank

The Magnet Tribune: Daniel Flores
Sophomore Maggie Sharp, the actress who portrayed Anne Frank in The Diary of Anne Frank, in October, poses in A building at VMT.

Daniel Flores, Staff Writer

Sophomore VMT theatre student Maggie Sharp said she had strong feelings for fellow cast members in The Diary of Anne Frank.

“The actors were really great people to work with. Since there were 10 people in the play, we all got really close. There was a point in time, like about 2 weeks before the shows, when I saw my stage family more than I saw my actual family,” Sharp said. “So when the show was over, we all went our separate ways. It was like, ‘oh what happened to that?’”

Sharp portrayed Anne Frank, the main character in The Dairy of Anne Frank.

The play depicts the life under Nazi rule of the Frank family, the van Daans and Albert Dussel in the Secret Annex in Amsterdam, Netherlands, during World War II. The play mostly takes place in the Secret Annex, which was located behind a bookshelf.

“This is the first time having a main role, and such an important roll is really great for my theatre career,” she said.

Sharp has taken a part of eight other plays, but this was her first time in the lead role, she said.

Challenges arose as she decided to audition for the role of Anne Frank, for Laredo Theater Guild International performances in October.

“It seemed like everyone wanted to audition for Anne. I was up against 110 other people,” she said. “I was chosen and that was pretty awesome, but it was really scary. No matter how many times you audition for something, you still get that anxiety. What If I don’t do well, what if I am this or that?”

“Since it is a heavy piece of literature, you just have to bring (the characters) to life, and really bring as much justice to what they were and what they did,” she said.

She explained what she would do if she could perform as Anne in the future.

“If I were to perform the play again, I would look at my previous experiences and build on what I have learned from being a lead before. Like sometimes I would treat it like, ‘This isn’t very important,’ and ‘this isn’t about me,’ when I guess I was just denying the fact that I was a lead because it’s called The Diary of Anne Frank. And I was insisting it wasn’t about Anne Frank. But I see it a different way. So if I were to perform it again I would try to get that fact through my head,” she explained.

I’ve been in shows before. I kind of fell in love after my second or third show.”

— Maggie Sharp

Sharp discussed her mental state before and during her performances.

“Every night before I would go up and perform, I kind of had to block my own personality and channel completely into Anne,” she said. “It was really hard trying to get rid of myself, that there was no trace of me left on stage.”

Sharp offered her thoughts on the play.

“It was a successful run. We made a lot of money for the theatre company,” she said. “We brought a lot of literature to kids who had never experienced a play before, and this is a like a really big thing for them. I had a bunch of kids come up to me and tell me that I inspired them. I was like, ‘well that has never happened before. I don’t know how to respond to that.’ So, I guess it was successful since we brought so many things to kids who have never experienced things like that before.”

She described her favorite moment in the play.

“The entire play in itself was a nice experience, but if I had to pick it would have been an accident during one of the shows,” Sharp said. “We had a bunch of props, we had a bunch of magazines, we had books, we had everything. We didn’t really check what they were, though. And one of the books was Hitler’s autobiography. So one of the people picked it from the bookshelf and started reading it. And the first thing they open to is a giant swastika. And they open it up and kind of stare at it for a second and then throw it in the trash can.”

Sharp explained she would leave the play as performed.

“I know this is cheesy, but I would whole-heartedly say that I wouldn’t change anything about the play, about the experience, about the actors,” Sharp said.

Sharp believes acting may be a possible career choice for her.

“Whole-heartedly, yes. Like that is one of the reasons that I’m at VMT. I actually transferred this year. I was at United (High School) last year. I was part of the One Act Play, but I felt like that just wasn’t all I could do. I felt like, since I’ve been in shows before, I kind of fell in love after my second or third show. But I was like, ‘hey this is something I want to do with my life.’ And theatre is the career I’m pursuing right now, which explains why I’m here at VMT.”