An interview with Belice Benoir, with photography by Strawberry Singh

Belice Benoir is Tybalt in our Second Life Dance Production of Romeo and Juliet
Belice Benoir is Tybalt in our Second Life Dance Production of Romeo and Juliet, photo by Strawberry Singh

Well, last week’s production of Romeo and Juliet went off without much incident. There was a little hiccup with some of the technical aspects requiring a scene to be restarted, but apart from that, a massive improvement over the earlier performance!

This weekend we’ll be trying a different time slot for our fourth performance (Sunday at 1PM SLT at the Basilique Playhouse) to see if we can bring the performance to another crowd that may have not been able to make it on Friday or Saturdays.

Over the last week I managed to catch up with Belice Benoir, which is no small miracle as she is busy, busy, busy!  Belice plays the short-tempered Tybalt, who is our main villain of the play. Tybalt is Lady Capulet’s nephew, Juliet’s cousin and Romeo’s primary rival. It is Tybalt, insulted by Romeo’s presence at the Capulet Ball, that slays Mercutio. Romeo tries to stop the fight by rushing between them but then Tybalt stabs Mercutio under Romeo’s arm. Mercutio’s death drives Romeo to kill Tybalt, leading to his own exile from Verona.

Tybalt Capulet played by John Leguziamo in Baz Luhrmann's Romeo and Juliet
Tybalt Capulet played by John Leguziamo in Baz Luhrmann’s Romeo and Juliet

Belice is Cloe Nyn’s (Paris) partner at the Amouresque, which I raved about several blog posts ago. I think she did an amazing job in channeling Tybalt in her costume and appearance, don’t you? Of course, Belice has strong visual talents and is one of the best interior decorators I’ve ever come  across in Second Life, so it’s no surprise her portrait of Tybalt is so compelling and stylishly devious.

The following is a short conversation I had with Belice about her experiences in preparing and performing in Romeo and Juliet, how she felt about her character Tybalt, and her plans as they relate to Second Life theatre.

Becky: Do you think the story of Romeo and Juliet is still relevant today? Why or why not?

Belice: I think the story of Romeo and Juliet is mostly important in todays times … as we seem to lose the passion and values of true deep love…. and to fight for it. In today’s time ..its easy to find “replacements and distractions” from a “love” lost. We don’t “fight” for Family / Love as much anymore and when the slightest complications/problems occur ..we choose an easy way out as “offers” are easily available.

Becky: How would you describe your character’s personality? Strengths, weaknesses?

Belice: Tybalt is a proud strong mind …his Family Honour comes above all ….Capulet’s forever!

Becky: (Laughs) Go Montagues! What were some of the challenges in preparing and performing this show?

Belice: No challenges for me, as I loved doing all the preparing, costume , dance and character research. Just one was to juggle with my online time and RL.

Becky: What was your most memorable moment during the making of the show?

Belice: There were many moments of laughter during rehearsals! And I’d like to bow my head for the amazing ideas and efforts you and Harvey put in the creative execution of performing Romeo and Juliet in Second Life.

Becky: Thank you – we couldn’t have done it without you! On that note, would you do something like this again if you had the chance?

Belice: Most definitely! We planned and did shows before, just not in the context of a theater play and enjoyed it tremendously,
although hard work and time needs to be invested : )

Becky: Yes, it’s hard to imagine when starting just how much work is involved isn’t it? What kinds of shows would you like to be involved in in the future, and what would you like to do in them?

Belice: I am open for all Ideas! Bring it on and I ll let you know *winks*

Becky: I will! Are there any new projects you’re working on that you’d like to talk about?

Belice: We always have ideas. Currently we are working on a beach area at Amouresque and a Strip Dance Show.

Please join us Sunday at 1pm, for our fourth performance of Romeo and Juliet at the Basilique Playhouse. This will be our first performance on a Sunday! It will start promptly at 1pm SLT – so don’t miss it! Seating is limited to 30 avatars, so lighten up on those scripts and get there early to claim your seat!

5 thoughts on “An interview with Belice Benoir, with photography by Strawberry Singh

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