by Abigail Charpentier
Since this spring, Susie Carroll has attended both James Madison High School and North Shore High.
On March 5, 2019, Carroll made her Broadway debut when she joined The Prom as a vacation swing, covering all female ensemble roles whenever cast members had vacations or personal days scheduled. By the end of her time at The Prom, she had performed in seven tracks: six female teen ensemble tracks and one adult female track.
She departed from The Prom in mid-July and opened in Mean Girls on July 23. In the other Casey Nicholaw-directed-and-choreographed musical, Carroll is also a vacation swing, covering the ensemble ladies and learning their tracks as their vacations come up.
“Joining two Broadway shows in the course of a year has been both the most rewarding and most challenging thing that I have experienced in my life thus far,” Carroll said. “It has required an ample amount of dedication, determination and focus. It has come with just about every emotion imaginable, but I wouldn’t trade any of it for even a second.”
Carroll auditioned for The Prom lab in December 2017 and was hired a year later. Similarly, she auditioned for Mean Girls in May 2018 and joined the company in July of the following year.
The moral of the story: you may not get the job right away.
“Sometimes you might get so close to booking that ‘dream job’ and then you don’t. Sometimes they tell you, ‘We will keep you on file’ and you leave feeling discouraged because you never believe that to actually be true. However, sometimes, it is true,” Carroll explained. “Sometimes you must continue on with your head held high, continue to work hard and sometimes when that dream job is meant to be for you. It will be there for you. It is possible.”
While Carroll was playing high school students onstage at the Longacre Theatre, she was an actual student at Pace University earning her BFA in Musical Theatre. While her training has helped prepare her for the past few months, especially transitioning between jobs, she said that “there is only so much homework I can do until I need to just do it on stage.”
One of the most challenging parts of changing shows was departing The Prom because it was the where she experienced all of her firsts: first Broadway costume fitting, first Broadway cast, etc.
“My departure at The Prom was made exceptionally difficult for me because of how special the company and the story we were telling was,” she said.
Since starting her career on the Great White Way, Carroll has experienced “really special moments” that she will treasure forever, such as sitting in Beth Leavel and Angie Schworer’s dressing room and getting life advice from them, leading a Broadway wedge and going to the Tony Awards for the first time.
Another aspect of her job that has been special to her is signing Playbills and meeting fans at the stage door.
“If I am onstage I try to never miss a night of going to the stage door to sign. Connecting with others and making them happy or inspired is truly one of the best gifts I can receive and makes it all worth it for me. Because I was once that kid.”