Continuing our series of interviews with the cast and creative team behind MMTC’s POE, today we sit down with Layla Esch-Bickel. Layla is a multi-talented contributor to MMTC. She is an actor and technician, and was recently awarded one of two inaugural John Sailer Scholarships for recognition of her commitment and interest in technical theatre. For POE, she is putting all those interests to good use by performing in show and serving as Assistant to the Director.
MMT: Layla, how old are you?
MMT: What school do you go to?
Layla: I’m homeschooled.
MMT: Excellent. So, where do you live?
Layla: I live in Roanoke city.
MMT: As the Assistant to the Director, you get to work a bit on all the stories and poems. Do you have a favorite?
Layla: “The Tell-Tale Heart” or “Annabel Lee.” Those are the most interesting stories to me.
MMT: Yes. Those are great ones. And you even get to do some choreography for “Annabel Lee.” What is your favorite character that you get to play?
Layla: Definitely the murderer in “The Tell-Tale Heart.”
MMT: Congratulations on your recent award by the way! How long have you been doing shows and classes at MMT?
Layla: Thanks! I’ve been participating in different ways since 2011.
MMT: What’s something you’ve learned about Poe or his writing since starting rehearsals?
Layla: I knew a few of his stories, but I’ve learned how self-reflective a lot of his poems are.
MMT: And lastly, what’s your favorite word you’ve learned from this show?
Layla: Brazen, which means bold and without shame.
MMT: That’s an excellent word! Thanks for taking the time to chat!
You won’t want to miss Layla and the rest of the cast as they present POE, starting this Saturday at 1pm on the Waldron Stage! Tickets are pay-what-you-can at the door. We hope to see you there!