Cherry Torres - Inspiring Through "Hamilton", Fighting For Justice and Crushin' It!

By Kimberly Dijkstra

Cherry Torres has loved musical theater since she was a child and began performing professionally at age 10. Following college, the dynamic Latina spent several years singing and acting in shows on cruises, then went on to do a number of productions in regional theater, and most recently has been a swing covering all three Schulyer sisters in the Angelica Tour of “Hamilton.”

“There’s something so exhilarating and exciting about touring because you get to be closer to communities who maybe don’t have access to [Broadway] or had been hoping to see a show for so long,” she said, which is undeniably the case for “Hamilton.” “We definitely feel a lot of that love.”

While “Hamilton” toured through Florida, Torres was able to do a Q&A with students at her alma mater, Dillard High School in Fort Lauderdale.

“That was such a rewarding experience for me – to get to talk to the kids who are hoping to get to do what I do,” she said. “It was just a really lovely full-circle moment.”

Torres has a lot of special memories from that time, including the night she went on as Eliza and played opposite her now-fiancé, Alexander, who went on as Alexander Hamilton. Their families and friends were in the audience.

“That was a huge, just wonderfully exhilarating moment that still to this day stands out and makes me really happy,” she said.

Shortly thereafter, the tour was canceled due to the emergence of the coronavirus pandemic.

Like many others, Torres has used this time to look within and at the issues surrounding her. She has chosen to use her voice to the best of her ability to spread awareness about injustices and contribute to forward progressive movement in our culture.

She said, “My hope is that people will be inspired to do the same.”

Cherry was also inspired to teach.

“A big something that stuck with me from those workshops [in Fort Lauderdale] and the things that I had done throughout my time with ‘Hamilton’ was just how much I enjoyed getting to share the things I’ve learned throughout my career, and getting to help kids grow and feel more confident in performing,” she explained.

She has predominantly been offering audition coaching, vocal coaching, and acting coaching for both children and adults, plus virtual summer camp classes and workshops.

“What’s great about virtual classes is it opened up all of these amazing possibilities and we can have people from all over and connect with them,” Torres said.

For Torres, weekly Zoom meetings with the cast of “Hamilton” were at first was essential for sharing information and gradually became more of a casual check-in.

“Quarantine is quite isolating. It’s easy to feel lonely,” she said. “Being in touch with fellow creatives that love to do what you love to do can be so inspiring and just needed throughout the pandemic.”

Torres felt a bit of that during the pandemic, going through the depression and anxiety that gripped many throughout the theater world. Teaching helped her feel more motivated and creative, as well as taking acting classes and recording audition videos. She also began collaborating with a friend and writing a screenplay, which is new territory, but a fun journey.

Another project she’s been able to direct her creativity into is providing voice work for a friend’s audio musical.

“That has been super fun and exciting, and it forced me to dive into the technical aspects of voiceover,” she said. “Projects like that have just been a godsend.”

With vaccination rates up and COVID-19 cases down in this country, theater is making a comeback.

“I look forward to Broadway coming back and being stronger as a community,” Torres said, and hopes to see a kinder, more inclusive theater community with more racial representation, especially in higher leadership levels.

The events of the past year have transformed Cherry forever. She has found a new voice, new passions and re-discovered herself.

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