Saira Grewal is one of the ten artists that make up National Players Tour 71. Currently, the Players are in New York and traveling to performing arts centers in Elmira and Westhampton Beach. While they are on the road, I wanted to chat with Saira about some of her favorite moments from this tour process.
Where are you from?
I was born and raised in the San Francisco Bay Area in California.
How did you decide you wanted to be a National Player?
I knew people who had been on tour in past years and really admired the job. I met Jenna Duncan (Associate Artistic Director/Casting Director) at American University, where I studied musical theatre, and learned more about the tour. After taking more straight theatre classes at school, I began to seek out performing in straight plays to expand my repertoire. I also have an interest in the administrative side of theatre and therefore the National Players seemed like the perfect job.
What roles do you play this season?
I play a total of ten characters which are:
As You Like It: Phebe, Le Beau, Amiens, Sir Oliver Martext
The Diary of Anne Frank: Margot Frank
Walk Two Moons: Margaret, Sergeant Bickle, Mary Lou, Doctor, Nurse
I am also the Company Manager, Finance Manager, and on the scenic crew.
What has been the most rewarding part of the tour process?
The talkbacks have been incredibly rewarding. The audience reception is always incredible, and I am reminded of the importance of this tour.
What places are you excited to visit?
I am very excited to visit Colorado, Nashville, and Atlanta!
What is your favorite scene to perform out of all three plays?
My favorite scene is in As You Like It, when I first come out as Phebe. We get a lot of laughs in that scene, and John Yazzo and I have a lot of fun.
Do you have a memorable moment from the past six months you can share with us?
We stayed in an Airbnb in Vermont during leaf-peeping season! It was so beautiful and was such a wonderful end to the first week away from Olney.