Wednesday, 26 October 2022

INTERVIEW: Sophie Naglik, currently playing Jennifer Parker in the London production of Back to the Future

Sophie Naglik is currently appearing in the West End production of Back to the Future the Musical as Jennifer Parker. Her other credits include Onstage swing / 1st Cover Lucy and 2nd Cover Susan in The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe (UK Tour), Violet Beauregarde in Charlie and The Chocolate Factory (Theatre Royal Drury Lane, West End), Hortensia in Matilda (Cambridge Theatre, West End) and Older Girl in The Boy In The Dress Musical Workshop (RSC).

Having appeared in the production since August, Sophie has had a little time to settle in now and we managed to catch up with her and talk all about the show. 

You’ve recently joined the West End cast of Back to the Future, how have you found it so far?

I’ve loved the whole process and the people. The atmosphere right from the beginning was very welcoming and fun, which created a lovely place to nurture the role.

The film has a huge following and now the show does too, how have you found the fan reaction?

Amazing! The love the fans have for the show is inspiring and has enabled me to find even more love for the show and the story.

Before auditioning for the Musical, what was your experience of Back to the Future? Had you seen the show or the film?

I always knew that Back To The Future was a ‘classic’. I watched the films a few years ago and really enjoyed them; I love the storyline. The musical had been on my bucket list to watch for a while, and I went to watch it for the first time about halfway through my audition process.

You are the first replacement in the role of Jennifer Parker, following the wonderful Courtney- Mae Briggs, how have you found your own way into the role?

During the rehearsal process, I found elements of the character that I could connect to personally and developed them for Jennifer. Also, just by doing the show every day you become more comfortable with the role and get to understand the personality of that character more. Watching the amazing Courtney-Mae play the role when I watched the show was so lovely and helpful as well, I noticed new elements of the character and adapted them to work for myself/my representation of the character.

The show is so much fun and I’m sure it is the same to perform, which part of it is your favourite?

I have so many favourites it’s hard to pick! I love performing Gotta Start Somewhere because the energy and connection we all have with each other on the stage is joyous. I also really enjoy the Only A Matter Of Time reprise Marty and Jennifer do in Act Two, the words, melody and meaning are hard not to love performing.

You’ve come straight into the West End fresh from the touring production of The Lion, The Witch and the Wardrobe who are now also doing a run in London, how has it been going from a swing and principal cover in that show to now playing a supporting role in a West End musical?

It’s been a really lovely transition. The different types of roles I feel do require quite a different process of learning, so I’ve enjoyed being able to have experienced all of them. It has been lovely in this role to have the time to focus on one character; you get to connect with them a lot better.

Will you be making a visit to see the show at the Gillian Lynne?

I have already gone to watch The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe, on their press night. Seeing the show reminded me how beautiful the story and the show itself are.

You were also part of Charlie and the Chocolate Factory and Matilda as a child, what lessons do you think you learnt from those shows that you’ve taken through to your career as an adult?

Doing those shows as a child taught me how to be consistent and resilient. They also showed me how brilliant theatre is, if it wasn’t for those jobs I don’t think I would have the love for it that I have now and wouldn’t be where I am.

If you had to play one part in the show for one special performance, which one would you choose and why?

I think I would choose George McFly, I just think his character is hilariously brilliant. He gets to be weird and endearing at the same time and I love that.

You’re in Back to the Future for the foreseeable but what other roles would you like to have a shot at?

I’d love to be able to play Glinda in Wicked and Anna in Frozen. Also, as a child, all I wanted to be was Eponine in Les Miserables, so playing that role would be amazing too.

In one sentence, tell us why people should come and see Back to the Future.

Back To The Future is a show full of love, laughs and energy; it will leave you feeling nothing but excitement and joy.

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