Meet the Artist: Alex Gieske

The Mad Hatter listening to a book
The Mad Hatter listening to a book

Alex Gieske accidentally stumbled into theatre when she was in sixth grade. “I auditioned for a school production because a friend forced me to and ever since then performing has been one of my passions.” Alex can’t quite pinpoint the exact reason as to why she loves acting as much as she does, but Ales knows that when an audience is captivated by the story that the actors are telling on stage, it is a sensation that is at once humbling and awesome.
For Alice in Wonderland Alex plays the Mad Hatter. Sighing heavily, Alex spoke, “Because this character is so much larger than life, I have struggled with making her seem like a real person. Although the Hatter is a challenge for me, she is also one of the roles that I have learned the most from. Every time the Mad Tea Party scene is performed it is different because every time I discover something new about my character and she is constantly changing.”

In Alex’s acting career, she has been very fortunate in not having horribly awful performance experiences. Remembering, Alex laughed, “That’s not to say I’ve never had a mishap. I remember one time I was on props for the musical, Brigadoon, and it was my job to turn on some candles in a house that moved….while it was moving. So during the blackout, I rush out to do my job and am promptly run over by the house. Luckily, I don’t think the audience noticed. Another one of my favorites is from the last performance of Eurydice. There were pipes that lined the playing space and some of the pipes were slightly elevated. During a scene, I went to investigate the pipes and I had barely touched one the them when they fell to the floor revealing a single pencil that was holding the pipes together (We had a very limited budget for that show). The only thing I thought was ‘Crap. I just broke the Underworld.'”

Alex Gieske as Eurydice in "Eurydice"
Alex Gieske as Eurydice in “Eurydice”

As the conversation turned to favorite memories, Alex’s face lit up, “There are so many!”  Instead of telling us all of her memories, Alex told her most recent one’s to us.   “I always go back to these when I question my sanity for doing theatre. During the first performance of Romeo and Juliet, I had just given Mercutio’s Queen Mab speech and there was a long beat of silence. The audience was so quiet and still and attentive to what we were doing that I swear you could have heard a pin drop. It was that moment that the magnitude of what actors are able to do to an audience really hit me. The other memory I love to go back to is after the final curtain call of Eurydice. The

Playing Mercutio in "Romeo and Juilet"
Playing Mercutio in “Romeo and Juilet”

entire cast loved that show and I never wanted it to end. After the last performance I got backstage and realized that we had created something remarkably special and that nothing exactly like that show would ever happen again. It was devastating to have to let it go, but I also knew this was a performance that people would take with them for the rest of their lives.  At least, I know I will.”

After high school, Alex plans on majoring in Nursing. Her dream college is U of M twin Cities, but she has yet to apply because “I’m so nervous!”  Othee than acting, Alex typically doesn’t do much besides acting, but “I guess if you forced me to do other things I would choose to read a lot and try to learn knit better and spend a lot of time with my dog.”

Come see Alex Gieske tonight in Alice in Wonderland at 7:30!

Alice in Wonderland premieres in the James Barr Auditorium at Homestead High School on tonight at 7:30.

October 17 and 18th @ 7:30

October 19th @ 2:00

Adults $8
Students $7

Homestead High School * 5000 W. Mequon Rd. Mequon WI 53092

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