I had so much fun conducting a virtual interview with Ava Briglia and Gilberto Moretti-Hamilton who play Summer and Freddy in School of Rock, playing at the Cadillac Palace Theatre, November 1-19, 2017.
Gilberto Moretti-Hamilton: My favorite song in School of Rock is “Stick It To The Man (Reprise)” because I do a drum solo and I don’t have to jump around, like in the early version of the song.
Ava Briglia: My favorite song is one that Miss Mullins sings, “Where Did the Rock Go?” Lexie Sharp has an incredible voice and there is one part that gives me chills every time I hear it. My personal favorite moment is when me, John [Michael Pitera] (Billy), and Carson [Hodges](Mason) are on the side during the battle of the bands. We have so much fun together cheering on our friends while they rock out!
AG: What is your dream role?
GM-H: My dream role is Freddy, the drummer and that’s my role in the show. So, I’m very happy.
AB: I've been very lucky to play two of my dream roles in professional shows! When I grow up I would love to be Elphaba from Wicked or Zoe from Dear Evan Hansen.
AG: Do you have a role model? If so, who? And for what reasons?
GM-H: I don’t have just one role model because I admire many great artists like Michael Jackson, James Brown, Led Zeppelin...they are all great performers and entertainers.
AB: I have a lot of role models! My sister Beada has been my biggest role model and inspiration. She's hard working and always kind and supportive to all of her friends and cast mates. She has helped me train and always encourages me! I have a lot of adults that I've worked with that I admire. Christopher Sieber and Jennifer Bowles from my last show worked hard, were so professional, always kind and fair to all of the kids. The entire current adult SOR tour cast have been amazing role models. Rob Colletti and Elysia Jordan are like my big brother and big sister.
GM-H: The instrument I like the most is the drums. I also like to play the bass a lot.
AG: Ava, how is the role of Summer different from other roles you’ve played?
AB: Summer is a dream role for me because she is more than just a rule follower who obsesses over gold stars. She is very smart and knows that women should be equal to men and when Dewey says she could be president of the United States it's the best compliment she could get! She is similar to Matilda in wanting to make things right and standing up to everyone, even adults. The main difference to me is that Matilda is more matter of a fact and Summer is sassy and a little bossy. I am in love with both characters and feel like they are both a part of me.
AG: What do you love about being on tour? What’s hard about being on tour?
GM-H: What I love about being on tour is that you get to see different places and you try new restaurants, Go Karting, meet new fans, and new audiences. What has been hard on tour is that you have to concentrate on your homework.
AB: I am having the best time on tour. This cast is like one big family, I think we are very lucky. I love seeing and learning new things in each city, it's like one big adventure! The hardest part about the tour has been catching up on school. I do an online school and get new assignments daily, like a regular school day. During put-ins and dress rehearsals I fell a little behind. That's new to me because I could always make up work on my day off but a lot of times that day is a travel day. I'm almost there, with the help of our tutors I should be back on track very soon!