Marika Abe plays a Protean in A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum. 

“I AM SPOILED!!!!” That’s what I’ve been telling my family, friends, and whoever has asked for my experience at Gulfshore Playhouse in Naples, FL.

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Hi! I’m Marika Abe and I’m playing one of the Proteans in A Funny Thing Happened On The Way To The Forum. Without a doubt, this show, this contract has been and will be one of the highlights in my career.

Being welcomed and working at this theatre full of wonderful staff led by Kristen Coury, along with other ridiculously talented guest artists has been a dream.

The beautiful beach (with dolphins!), interesting ecosystems and animals, delicious food are all huge bonuses of working here. One of my favorite things to do in Naples is catching the sunset at the beach. I can’t help but think that I’m on a paid vacation! I am spoiled.

Marika Blog Photo

Generally, we get about 2 weeks of rehearsals to put up a show. But we had 4 weeks for this production! Having extra weeks of rehearsals allowed us to really explore and polish our characters, scenes, and learn how to tell the story. And this is not only because of the duration of rehearsals, but also because our innovative creative team, Darren, Adam, and Adrian, trusted us to explore. Sharing such a fun playground with this hilarious and incredible cast and creative team has been a blast, and I’ll never get bored doing this show. I am blessed and spoiled to have this opportunity.

So what do I do as a protean? I play multiple characters on stage!

Marika Blog Post 2

Ensembles help to create and complete the show’s world, space, or atmosphere on stage through our acting, movement, and singing. I always try to differentiate each character, even for a small part, through physicality and vocal quality by coming up with its own life story and personality.

Usually, this musical is done with more than a cast of 20. About half of them would be making up the ensemble.

But there are only two of us! Our wonderful dance captain Matt and me. We are playing Senex’s slaves, citizens in Rome, eunuchs, courtesans (at least 2 different courtesans in 1 song!), sailors, soldiers, etc. I really enjoy going on stage in many different costumes and characters with different genders and occupations!

Like I said earlier, I never get bored performing in this production because each show is always different with a different audience! Come see our show and laugh with us! I’d love to share our journey with YOU!

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