From ‘Larchmont’s Got Talent’ to Pantages

| March 29, 2018 | 0 Comments

IARA NEMIROVSKY, former “Larchmont’s Got Talent” contestant, playing Ariel in “The Tempest” with the Los Angeles Drama Club.

In October 2015, 8-year-old Iara Nemirovsky clambered onto the “Larchmont’s Got Talent” stage and belted out “Naughty” from “Matilda the Musical.” With great excitement, she landed second prize. The next year, she mounted the steps once more to sing  “Gimme Gimme” from “Thoroughly Modern Millie.” Second prize was hers again.

Now, the 11-year-old is ascending a much bigger stage, making her professional theatrical debut as overachieving band manager Summer in the Broadway national tour of Andrew Lloyd Webber’s musical “School of Rock.

The play, which fist-pumps its way onto the Hollywood Pantages stage on Thurs., May 3, is based on the hit 2003 film of the same name. The high-octane musical features songs from the movie as well as an original score by Andrew Lloyd Webber, lyrics by Glenn Slater and book by Julian Fellowes of “Downton Abbey” fame.

But getting to this place didn’t happen overnight. After Iara placed second in “Larchmont’s Got Talent,” she took her talent show winnings and headed to New York, where she met with acting coaches and auditioned for the Broadway musical “Matilda.” Although playing a role in “Matilda” didn’t pan out due to her young age, Iara was on their radar.

Then came “School of Rock.”

“I have to give my mom some credit,” laughs Iara. “She asked me if I wanted to go to this open casting call that they were holding in Los Angeles in December. I didn’t know the show or the story very well, but we decided to go anyway.”

Iara got a callback and then flew to New York for a final audition. Within weeks, she booked the part.

“The day I found out I got the part, it was raining in L.A.,” recalls Iara. “I like rainy days, so I went out in the middle of the street and spun around and yelled ‘wheeeeeeeee!’”

From the moment Iara learned the good news, she hit the ground running.

“We had to learn the whole show in four weeks,” Iara says excitedly, “and then we perform six days per week, eight shows per week.”

For school, Iara and the other 16 child cast members see on-set teachers and take online courses. While not on tour, Iara attends Citizens of the World Charter School. She spent her first years at The Plymouth School, a preschool near Windsor Square.

Growing up in the Larchmont area, Iara had plenty of options to feed her acting bug. She performed in “The Sound of Music,” “Aladdin,” “Shrek the Musical” and “Into the Woods” at the Youth Academy of Dramatic Arts (YADA) on Third Street.  She also sharpened her acting skills with the Los Angeles Drama Club, the youngest Shakespeare troupe in the country, nailing roles in “Macbeth,” “The Tempest,” “A Midsummer Night’s Dream” and “Titus Andronicus.”

Now, Iara is pouring all of those skills into the character of Summer.

“She’s a bit bossy,” explains Iara, “and she likes to be in charge of everyone. She’s not mean at all, though. She finds herself equal to the teachers and adults.”

Iara’s national debut took place at the Kentucky Center for the Performing Arts in Louisville, Ky. on March 13, the day after her 11th birthday. Her first night on stage culminated with a 2,000-person-strong standing ovation.

Iara may be lean in years, but she already knows which direction she wants her life to go.

“I’m really enjoying this. I’m so happy that people will see what I can really do and then I can keep doing it more and more. This is what I really want to do.”

“School of Rock” runs from Thurs., May 3 to Sun., May 27 at Hollywood Pantages Theatre,

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Category: Entertainment

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