Spotlight On: Louis DiPaolo, student actor

Sophomore Louis DiPaolo said that he “always loved the idea of being an actor.” This passion is evident in his dedication to the arts at Geneseo.

He has been cast in four shows since enrolling in fall 2011: “Equus,” “Spring Awakening,” “Parade” and “Cabaret,” which will run in January.

“My nana always told me I was going to be on Broadway, but I never knew what that meant,” DiPaolo said. It was not until he was in seventh grade, performing in “Once Upon a Mattress” that he discovered his passion for musical theater.

“It was a whole new world … singing, dancing and acting all in one? How come no one ever told me about this?” DiPaolo said. According to DiPaolo, he has participated in at least two shows a year since.

When he came to Geneseo, DiPaolo said he was intrigued by how many shows go on every semester. DiPaolo characterized his first show on campus, “Equus,” as a “very different experience.” According to DiPaolo, he was cast because he “looked like some sort of Lady Gaga creation” in his role as a horse.

This exposure prepared DiPaolo for his next role in “Spring Awakening” in January 2012 where he played a more provocative role, kissing another male actor on stage and pretending to masturbate. He said being the only freshman in the cast was an added stress at first but considering what he saw in “Equus,” he ultimately decided, “If someone can be fully blown naked, I can give a little smooch to someone on stage and be fine.”

DiPaolo said that when he auditioned for “Spring Awakening” he warned the person he auditioned with that he was going to act out the scene’s kiss in order to show his dedication to the role. He said he believes this contributed to his being chosen for the role.

“As an actor you’re always learning. You never stop learning,” DiPaolo said.

According to DiPaolo, most of the cast played several roles. “It was really neat to be able to go into a show and have to develop a different character for each scene,” he said.

His involvement in No Laugh Track Required and Geneseo Musical Theatre Club contribute to the splash DiPaolo has made in the arts at Geneseo. He has been a member of No Laugh Track Required since fall of 2011 and MTC since spring of 2012. The MTC show, which runs Nov. 15-17, will be his second and will, according to DiPaolo, give him a chance to surprise the audience with a quirky costume change.

DiPaolo said he looks forward to reprising a role he played his senior year in high school in Vocal Miscellany’s upcoming production of “Cabaret.” He will play Herr Schultz, one of his mother’s favorite roles, according to DiPaolo.

“This one’s for you, Mom. I’ll do it again just for you,” he said.