Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Actor Profile: Gamalia Pharms

Gamalia Pharms will be playing Motormouth Maybelle in HAIRSPRAY.

Gamalia is a member of Actors' Equity Association and has appeared at Wheelock Family Theatre in The Wizard of Oz, The Hobbit, Cinderella, A Little Princess, Kiss Me Kate, The Good Times Are Killing Me, Ole' Sis Goose, The Sound of Music, Beauty and the Beast, The Beanstalk, The Giant and Jack, Lilly's Purple Plastic Purse, Pippi, Honk, Seussical, Hello Dolly, Oliver, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, Trumpet of the Swan, Anne of Green Gables, Stuart Little, Aladdin, My Fair Lady, Once Upon a Mattress and Phantom Tollbooth.

"When I saw John Waters’ film Hairspray in the 80’s, it really resonated with me. As a child growing up in the Mission Hill (Roxbury) area of Boston in the 1960s, I have memories of singing Stop in the Name of Love with my childhood friends as we walked to school. My family had one black-and-white television, and when an African-American group or singer appeared on The Ed Sullivan Show on Sunday night, it was monumental! My older sister, would teach me the latest dances she learned from the parties she would go to on the weekends! I could do the shimmy, the pony, the skate, the swim, the monkey and the twist! I idolized my older teenage sister and would borrow her records (when she would let me), and enjoyed watching her hair style change from a ‘swinging sixties’ bouffant to the militant Black Panthers afro! I also remember seeing my parents openly weep with the assassinations of JFK, MLK and Malcolm X. The strong feeling of the loss of hope was palpable - memories of the riots, the horror of hearing about lynchings in the south, and watching my father deal with discrimination at his work place. Growing up in the inner city I also experienced ‘white flight’ when many of my white friends’ families moved or took their children out of public school.

"The world vision Martin Luther King envisioned in the 1960s, is one I feel Wheelock Family Theater embraces, with its mission of inclusion and diverse casting policies. I feel lucky to have found WFT, and have enjoyed being a member of many casts that reflect the diversity of Boston in all aspects - race, gender and individuals with disabilities.

"I am thrilled to be a member of this amazing WFT production!"

No comments:

Post a Comment

Wheelock Family Theatre always hopes to engage in a lively dialogue. All voices make up our varied and colorful family and free speech is a cherished right. While critical analysis is welcome, and indeed, anticipated; discriminatory or hateful language will not be tolerated.