Senior Sophie Reidt takes center stage at CBC

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Courtesy of Sophie Reidt

Preparing to go on stage for CBC’s performance of “Rock of Ages,” seniors Sophie Reidt and Cat Hercules pose for a picture. Reidt and Hercules played waitresses and decided to pose with a sandwich Reidt was eating at the time. “I was just eating in the dressing room and we aren’t supposed to do that, so when we took our picture it was to be funny,” Reidt said.

Acting on the Christian Brothers College High School (CBC) stage, senior Sophie Reidt pursues her passion for acting as a member of CBC’s co-ed theatre program. While Reidt stays on campus for academics, she is one of the few students who can often be seen acting at other schools.

Reidt began acting at summer camps at age five. She has been a part of the theater productions at Kirkwood Community Centers, Becky Viola’s Children’s Theater and most often at CBC.

“I got my start at CBC because I wanted a more professional show environment, and I got hooked. I have been in 21 musicals in high school and have seen 32 Broadway shows in my life; it’s my favorite thing in the world,” Reidt said.

Of the 32 broadway shows Reidt has seen, her favorites are “The Prom,” “The Book of Mormon” and “Dear Evan Hansen.”

“I love ‘The Prom!’ It’s such a fun show [with a] heartfelt message that makes you want to be a better person and the music is a certified bop. My all-time favorite is ‘The Book of Mormon.’ It’s so funny and makes me so happy,” Reidt said. “My mom also really likes it, it’s like our special show that we [both] love to go see; I’ve seen it four times. I also love ‘Dear Evan Hanson.’ It’s basic but the production is amazing. Great music, great story and tons of meaning, one of the best works the theater has seen.”

In March 2019, Reidt performed in “Rock of Ages” which turned out to be one of her favorite musical performances on the CBC stage because of how it differed from a traditional musical. 

“I’m used to doing standard musical theater, but ‘Rock of Ages’ was a lot of pop music. It was such good music and such great people [and] a lot of fun,” Reidt said.

Even though CBC Director Tom Murray holds actors to a heightened standard, Reidt still encourages people to consider acting at CBC even with the added pressure.

“It’s very different [acting at CBC compared to West], it’s very cutthroat, so to say, it’s definitely a lot more pressure because we have a name. With our reputation, Mr. Murray is very, very much a stickler for everything so it’s a lot more pressure,” Reidt said.

Director Becky Viola was Reidt’s first director and her lifelong role model. Reidt got involved with her during an audition for a play called ‘Attack of the Pom Pom Zombies’ and from there she decided to continue her acting career. 

“Becky was the first person who ever believed in me as a performer. She always had the best attitude and made me smile every day I was with her. She taught me to be strong, confident and kind and she means the world to me,” Reidt said. 

Reidt views performing at the Fabulous Fox Theater during the 2016-2017 St. Louis High School Musical Theatre Awards with CBC as one of her greatest achievements. 

“[I] met a bunch of Broadway professionals; I met Mike Isaacson and a lot of the Muny producers. That was a really, really, big accomplishment and is still to this day, my favorite thing I’ve ever done in my entire life,” Reidt said.

Along with being on stage, Reidt is drawn to theater for the cast friendships and having audience members enjoy a performance. 

“Go for it and don’t hold back. Don’t be scared and just try new things. If it doesn’t work out, try it again. There’s no right or wrong,”

— senior Sophie Reidt

“I don’t know how to describe it, I just don’t know, I’m a huge dork. I love just getting in costume and working countless hours. The sense of camaraderie a cast has is so amazing,” Reidt said. “[Theatre] just makes me so happy. It gives me a chance to escape any [pressing] issues I have right now. There’s truly nothing like live theater. I really hope other people can experience that.”

Following high school, Reidt plans to go to Illinois State University to major in musical theater education to help change people’s points of view on theater. 

“I don’t like how high school theater is generalized by ‘High School Musical.’ I think it’s more than that. And it has made me who I am today. I want to be there for others and keep producing good theater in schools,” Reidt said. 

Reidt also has some advice she would like to give to anyone who is considering getting into theater.

“Go for it and don’t hold back. Don’t be scared and just try new things. If it doesn’t work out, try it again. There’s no right or wrong,” Reidt said.