Wonderful Juli Robbins

Posted by: wbtpress on Wednesday, January 7, 2009 at 2:36:00 pm

   Juli Robbins & Duke Lafoon as Mary & George Bailey

I grew up in Richmond VA (oddly enough, the same place that Duke Lafoon grew up but we didn't know each other until rehearsals for A Wonderful Life!).  I have one older sister who is  completely the opposite of me who works in the corporate world.  My father was a college head basketball coach (he just retired this year after 30 years with the same University). My mother was a stay at home mom and we grew up going to most of my dad's games and tournaments/championships. I grew up in the suburbs and went to a public school then to Florida State University. Our family has always been very close and I'd say the hardest part about this career is being away from them.  I've lived in FL, LA, and NY and it's tough being so far from the ones you love.  I suppose these traditional family roots help keep me grounded when my career can feel a bit unbalanced!

So many people influenced me along the way, from teachers who saw something in me and encouraged me to keep doing what I was doing to my family who saw me performing non-stop at home and provided me with dance lessons, and voice lessons, and sent me to college for music, and camps and on and on...  I was that ham of a child that on EVERY home video from about 8 years old was jumping in front of the camera and taking over.  I cower down now as I watch these embarrassing home movies, wondering how my family didn't just say "JUST BE QUIET ALREADY", but I chuckle at how young it all started and how entertained they seemed to be.  I do feel blessed to have had SO many supportive people in my life along the way.  My parents always told me that I could do or be whatever I wanted as long as I worked hard and as long as it made me happy.  They warned me from the start that I was going into one of THE toughest careers out there... often filled with rejection and criticism, but they've supported me 100% nonetheless.

I am a fan of the Frank Capra film, but am not someone who religiously watched it from start to finish every year over the holidays.  I can remember many years visiting my grandmother's house for Christmas and having it on in the background, but it had been a while since I'd actually done a full sit-down viewing.  Honestly, I had no clue there was even a musical of it until I was called in for the audition!  Since there aren't any cast recordings, I hadn't heard any of the music until just a few days before rehearsals started, so musically this was all very new to me.    

 Favorite moment in the show?  Hmmm. I think I'd have to say the bedroom scene with George when I sing "I couldn't be with anyone but you".  I just think it's a very sweet, vulnerable moment for George and a very real moment between two lovers sharing what it is that makes them love each other.  Duke makes everything SO comfortable on stage that it gives this moment such truth.  This scene for me is just very honest and comfortable and the essence of what love is. 

 As for my dream role... I think it'd have to be something that hasn't yet been written! To me a true dream role would be one that was actually written FOR me with my instrument in mind.  A role written for Juli Robbins' voice, not just my voice "type" and for the quirks that I personally bring as an actor. Yes, there are many (already written) roles that I would love to play someday, but instead of playing a role that someone else made famous...that the audience often wants to see replicated as "so-in-so" created it, why not have the dream of playing one just for me?!  Yes, a big dream, but that's the point of dreaming right?

Well, I currently have paint all over me from remodeling my boyfriend's kitchen!  I LOVE "playing house" whether that be remodeling something, painting, decorating, cooking... basically getting very hands-on with projects!  I'm also a licensed/certified massage therapist so I really love the healing arts and the balance that it brings to my life.  I particularly love working in the prenatal field of massage and may even become a certified Doula (labor coach/assistant) in the future!   

On my I pod?  Oh gosh... everything!  I'm not one of those people that walks around listening to constant show tunes just because my job is in theatre.  I love so many types of music depending on my mood, which I imagine is the case for most.  I enjoy finding new eclectic artists that aren't being played on the radio 15 times a day.  :)  

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