British international student pursues zeal, talent for musical theater

Musical theater and communication double major senior Sophie Yeomans moved to the United States from the United Kingdom for college. At Geneseo, she has heavily involved herself in school productions and performance groups. Even before college, music and theater heavily influenced Yeomans. (Izzy Graziano/Knights’ Life Editor)

Musical theater and communication double major senior Sophie Yeomans traveled far from home for her college education. 

Originally from Burton-upon-Trent, England, Yeomans is Geneseo’s first fully matriculated student from Western Europe. Before Geneseo, she attended Monroe Community College for a year and a half. 

 “I made a giant binder full of different schools that I could go to and presented it to my family,” Yeomans said. “Through an elimination process, we decided that America would be best for me, not speaking any other language other than English. I should be in New York because it’s related to the musical theater thing that I didn’t want to let go of–– it kind of made a lot of sense.”

Beyond studying musical theater, Yeomans participates in the musicals on campus and was the lead in “Gypsy” during the spring 2017 semester. She is currently preparing for fall 2017’s musical, “Company,” which runs Nov. 1-5 in Wadsworth Auditorium. Yeomans also belongs to the Musical Theater Club, writes for The Lamron and is part of the Geneseo Holiday Jubilee committee. 

Music and theater are important parts of Yeomans’ life. She’s worked in a semi-professional big band as a saxophonist, flautist, clarinetist and lead vocalist. To perform with the band, Yeomans traveled—among many locations—to New York City, Boston, Aberdeen and Paris. 

Yeomans has also participated in musicals with Rochester’s Stageworks Theatre. Those productions included “Les Misérables,” “Jekyll and Hyde” and many other revues. In her work, she draws from multiple internal sources to find inspiration.

“It depends on the particular song that I’m singing. I think that if it’s a particularly emotional song, there’s a lot in my past that I can draw from,” Yeomans said. “I think that’s the key to being a successful musical theater performer: to draw from your past experiences and create a character that is separate from you but has elements of you as the actor, so it’s real and it’s authentic.” 

Throughout her life, Yeomans has traveled to places all over the world: Fuerteventura, Ibiza, London, Munich, Cape Verde, Geneseo and more. With an adventurous soul and the capacity to take on any opportunity, Yeomans has vast options for her life post-graduation.  

“I would love to be in the musical theater world following graduation but then obviously there’s the question of where I’m going to go,” she said. “Should I go home to pursue the musical theater thing, should I try and pursue that here?”

As a double major, Yeomans also has her communication degree to use in building a career.

“There are a couple of things up in the air right now that I’m not really sure about regarding my future,” Yeomans said. “Hopefully, before I graduate, they will fall into place.”

Yeomans’ post-graduation goals are considerably different than past jobs she has held. Previously, she has worked as a financial advisor specializing in mortgage advice and as an alcohol distribution logistic manager. 

Although a performer at heart, the skills Yeomanshas obtained in a multitude of areas confirm her future will be bright, no matter what she ends up doing.