Season of Thanks: Logan Truesdell

There’s an age old joke that everybody knows: you shouldn’t work with kids or animals. I knew that when I wrote the script, but well, I’ve always been a little glutton for punishment.

I was worried from day one about finding the right little girl for the part. It was especially problematic that I needed two actresses that looked similar enough to be playing the same role, ten years apart. I decided to cast for performance, and worry about appearances later.

 Logan was the last person to read for us in Christiansburg. She came into the room by herself, leaving her mom to wait for her in the hallway. I asked her what plays she had been in, and she happily told me about each part she had played at which theatre. Then I asked if she understood her part, and she said she had already memorized part of the script. To tell you the truth, Logan handled her audition with more grace, charisma, and ability than quite a few adults I’ve seen in my time. But the kicker was when we watched her audition on tape a few days later, she came across so well that we were floored all over again by her talent. It was the happiest coincidence that she and Elizabeth looked so similar that it was completely believable that they would be the same person.

Logan was on set for one day, and she charmed everybody. She had her part memorized and worked with me to give the performance I wanted. She was a gem, and I honestly can’t say enough good things about her.

I also can’t let this go by without taking the opportunity to thank her mother, Jeannie. Directors run afoul of “stage mothers” often enough that I was worried, but Jeannie was absolutely wonderful. She was happy to help me out in any way that she could, even helping me work out what Logan would wear for the part.

A huge thank you to both of them, they took something that was a real concern for me and made it a wonderful experience.

Photo Courtesy of Katie Neff

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