Camille Nugent’s propinquus connection to theater

Cami Nugent as Alice Murphy perfectly displays the emotion within her character. (Aislyn McDonald)

Laying on a picnic blanket beside Alice Murphy, who has no courage to tell her own story. This is what senior Camille Nugent imagined before taking on a daunting role such as Alice Murphy in Bright Star; she imagined herself as the vessel to tell Alice’s traumatic story for her.

As kids, everyone has their own dream for the future; it reshapes or changes as they grow. However, that is not the case with Nugent. Deep down she has known since her first show, at six, that it was her passion. Nugent continued to fill roles such as Alice Murphy in the latest Fossil Ridge High School musical, Bright Star.

The art of theater requires a specific type of extroverted energy; which is necessary for original acting and creating connections with the people involved.

“There’s a certain kind of chaos that comes with it that you learn; like going to a cast party at IHOP after a show,” Nugent compares the energy in theater to some of her fun experiences.

She expands on the effects of that constant energy on her personal life and mental health. 

“You get to a point where you have to [sort of] hermit away for a little while. When you’re giving and giving, you run out at some point… I struggle with mental health. It’s something that I [struggle with] figuring out how it fits into my very extroverted and active, daily life,” Nugent expands on her vulnerabilities.

Nugent has a unique impact on everyone she comes across. It is seen throughout the deep connections of the theater troupe.

Parker Cropp met Nugent in her Freshman year of high school before the musical Newsies was canceled. They took the stage together in Bright Star, Parker being part of the ensemble.

Nugent and Tishkowski play the roles of Alice and Jimmy Ray in Bright Star. (Aislyn McDonald)

“She’s kind, and wickedly talented,” Parker comments on Nugent’s performance in Legally Blonde.

Alex Tishskowski acted alongside Nugent as a lead role in Bright Star. The two had immense chemistry on stage, “She’s always interested in every single thing about another person. I think she is [a really] aspiring person.”

Mikayla Assmus, the theater director, especially had quite a bit to comment on Nugent’s personality, “You never really see her upset or sad. She is always very excited and happy and wants everyone around her to feel that same energy too.”

Without theater, Nugent believes she would be a completely different person. She was able to make these connections and create such a beautiful personality through theater; it showed her how to see the stories in people.

Camille Nugent belts out ‘Ireland’ as Paulette in Legally Blonde. (Bruna Horvath)

Nugent’s lifelong passion has never changed, reassured by one particular ‘spark’ experience that even she struggles to explain.

“Something about the power of being onstage [after] that performance and this light was a really visceral kind of sign for me the way that I felt in that moment. Right before the applause, there’s a kind of break. It was in that nick of time I realized, I have no other choice. I have to do this,” Nugent reflects back on her role as Paulette in Legally Blonde, singing ‘Ireland’.