Coast to coast: Alumna Alexa Xioufaridou Moster’s national tour debut in Broadway’s “Pretty Woman: The Musical”


Photo courtesy of Broadway in Chicago

Alexa Xioufaridou Moster. She made her national tour debut as understudy and ensemble in “Pretty Woman: The Musical.”

Maria Ximena Aragon, Senior Staffer

No stranger to the stage, Alexa Xioufaridou Moster (Communication ’21) made her national tour debut as understudy and ensemble in “Pretty Woman: The Musical.” But before the Chicago native was performing to audiences across the country, she was practicing on the Northwestern stage. The Daily sat down with Moster to talk about all things Broadway and life on tour during a pandemic. 

The conversation has been edited for clarity and brevity.

The Daily: What was the audition process like for “Pretty Woman: The Musical”?

Moster: It was an experience that in the moment was like, ‘How am I going to do this? This feels like a big, crazy opportunity.’ Once I was in the room, I realized this is just like any other audition that I did at school. There were definitely a lot of initial jitters, but once I settled into the act of singing, acting and doing the songs in front of the director, it came over me that, ‘Yes, this is a big opportunity, but it’s okay if it doesn’t work out.’ And because I was in that calmer mental state, I think that’s actually why it worked out.

The Daily: What has it been like to work with industry professionals, specifically a Tony award-winning director and choreographer like Jerry Mitchell?

Moster: As a kid right out of college, I walked into a very seasoned room, and it was really a blessing to be surrounded by so many people who had been around the block before. So, for those first three weeks of rehearsal in New York, I remember I felt like a sponge. I was literally just trying to soak up every single thing that I was observing around me.

The Daily: What places are you looking forward to visiting the most?

Moster: I am so excited to come home to Chicago. We have so many family members there, friends, people from the Northwestern community, from my high school community and even my elementary school. So it’s going to be a big sort of community reunion when we go back.

The Daily: Could you describe as a performer what the energy of live theatre looks like? What keeps you going?

Moster: What really gets me going is I always think that at any given show, it could be someone’s first time at the theater. I remember when I was 8 years old and it was my first time seeing a professional musical. It was actually the national tour of “Wicked” that was coming through Chicago. I will never forget the feeling of just sitting in the audience in absolute amazement being like, “I can’t believe this is possible,” “I can’t believe that this kind of thing exists and is real.” 

It’s our job to do the same show eight times a week, so how do you keep it new? How do you keep it fresh? For me, there are going to be people in the audience who may have never seen theater, have never heard the story and there are going to be kids looking at what we do, going: “I want to do that one day.” And I know that for a fact, because I was that kid. 

The Daily: With Broadway shutting down for over 18 months, what is the significance of finally being able to perform in front of a live audience again?

Moster: It is the most special feeling. It was special before, but after not being able to do it, we take nothing for granted. Every moment is special. Every city is special. Every audience is special. There are still times when I’m on stage, and I look around and I go, ‘Oh my god, is this really happening?’ I remember a point of time a year ago where I thought I might never perform again. It’s so many “pinch me” moments all the time.

Q: What advice do you give to current students or aspiring Broadway performers?

Moster: You have to be kind to yourself, because it is a very demanding industry and it asks a lot of young people. It asks that you put yourself on display, that you leave yourself open to criticism, and that comes with its own challenges. So just remember to be compassionate to yourself through the rejection, because there will be a lot of it. Make sure you’re taking care of yourself and being there for yourself through the hills and valleys. 

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Twitter: @menitaaragon

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