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Patriot Profile: Nadine Rousseau

Year: Senior

Major: English with a concentration in dramatic literature

Nadine Rousseau [1]

Nadine Rousseau

Center Stage: Performing arts student Nadine Rousseau is all about the stage, be it acting, singing, or dancing. In September, she was handpicked to be part of a group that sang two songs with Broadway legend Patti LuPone during the ARTS by George! benefit. Rousseau says performing with the Tony Award winner and feeling her aura onstage lets her know a career in theater is not that obscure a possibility.

Merry Old England: A theater-themed, study-abroad trip to London opened Rousseau’s eyes to different aspects of performance. “We immersed ourselves in theater and saw plays basically every night,” she says. “The grayness of London made walking into a lively theater all the more inspiring. It was really a life-changing experience.”

The Bard: Rousseau took an English course, Shakespeare in Performance, where she and her classmates acted out certain scenes. The class enhanced her knowledge of classical theater and created a pathway to other learning opportunities in the performing arts, including her latest part. “You can’t just study theater on the page; it’s like looking at sheet music. You have got to hear the music.”

I’m Your Venus: Rousseau is playing Venus in a Mason Players production of Christopher Marlowe’s Dido, Queen of Carthage. “I wouldn’t have been interested in this show if I hadn’t taken that English class,” Rousseau says. “Now I’m really excited about the chance to perform in a Renaissance drama.”

Life Is a Cabaret: When she isn’t treading the boards on campus, Rousseau is performing around the Washington, D.C., area as part of the 12-person Mason Cabaret group. This year’s cabaret is titled Contemporary Classics and will focus on music from the last few decades.

Perfect Harmony: So far the song with the best audition track record for Rousseau is “I’ve Got the World on a String.” Other songs she enjoys singing include “A Sleepin’ Bee” from the musical House of Flowers and “Running” by Adam Gwon.

—Jamie Rogers