Meet the Children in Reston Players’ Upcoming ‘Les Misérables’ by Diane Schnoor

This fall, many talented children from the Washington, D.C. area auditioned for the three children’s roles in Les Miserables. Meet Ella Schnoor, Ethan Van Slyke, and Maggie Slivka, who play Little Cosette, Gavroche, and Young Eponine in the Reston Players’ production opening this Friday night, January 17th. According to Director Andrew JM Regiec, “These talented young actors were selected after open auditions brought enormous interest from the regional acting community. It’s been an exciting rehearsal process helping these young actors bring their characters to life on stage.”

Little Cosette (Ella Schnoor) sings "Castle on a Cloud." Photo by Diane Schnoor.
Little Cosette (Ella Schnoor) sings “Castle on a Cloud.” Photo by Diane Schnoor.

Ella Schnoor, a sixth grader from Winchester, VA, is no stranger to the stage. Past favorite roles include Little Cosette in Les Miserables at the Woodstock Playhouse in NY; Princess Catherine in One More Night at The Kennedy Center Page to Stage Festival; and Molly in Imagine That, Shirley Temple in Michael Berkeley’s Divas, Tweedle Dee in Alice in Wonderland, and a River City Kid in The Music Man at the TriArts Sharon Playhouse in Connecticut. “I want more than anything to be an actress like Sutton Foster when I grow up,” Ella said. “I got interested in singing and dancing watching my big sister, Miranda, perform in Annie and The Sound of Music. When I was three, I rode my tricycle on stage in the NYC number in Annie…and probably gave some of the actors bruised shins.” Ella is no stranger to playing Little Cosette, having played the role last summer at the Woodstock Playhouse in New York. “I feel very honored to be in in this production of Les Miserables,” Ella said. “People have been working for a long time to make this a great show.” Ella admits to being fascinated by the character of Cosette. “I love playing Cosette because she is always brave when the Thenardiers beat her up. I love the way she is imaginative and dreams about her mother and what a better life might look like in “Castle on a Cloud,” she said. “I love Cosette so much that for my birthday I got my mom to buy me a broom like my character uses. I also named my puppy Cosette.”

Gavroche (Ethan Van Slyke) urges the beggars to "follow me!" Photo by Diane Schnoor.
Gavroche (Ethan Van Slyke) urges the beggars to “follow me!” Photo by Diane Schnoor.

Sixth grader Ethan Van Slyke from South Riding, VA is thrilled to be making his Reston Players debut as Gavroche in Les Miserables. Ethan’s other theatre credits include Randolph Macafee in Bye Bye Birdie and Oliver in Oliver! with The Summer Grand Theatre in Herndon and Chip in Beauty in the Beast at Herndon High School. “I like singing the music in Les Miserables because it is very intense and fun,” Ethan said. He said he is partial to his character, Gavroche, the street urchin. “I like how Gavroche takes charge of things!” Just like the character he plays, Ethan said he isn’t intimidated by being one of three kids in a cast full of adults. “The cast is full of fantastic singer actors,” he said. “People should take the opportunity to see Les Mis on stage because it does not come around a lot.”

Valjean (Michael Reid) meets Little Cosette (Ella Schnoor). Photo by Diane Schnoor.
Valjean (Michael Reid) meets Little Cosette (Ella Schnoor). Photo by Diane Schnoor.

Fourth grader Maggie Slivka from Centreville, VA is making her Reston Players debut as Young Eponine. Maggie is following in mom, Lee’s footsteps. “My mom was in Reston Players’ Gypsy in 1982,” Maggie said. “I love theatre. I’ve been doing it ever since I was a little girl. This is my first grown up show with Reston Players.” Maggie said she hopes lots of people come to see Les Miserables, which opens January 17. “I just think the show is very interesting,” she said. “Everyone is really great, the singing is beautiful, and the acting is wonderful.” Producer Richard E. Schneider said Reston Players jumped at the chance when the rights for Les Miserables became available. “While we know many people attending our show have already seen Les Miserables many times, as a local production, we can bring the show to a whole new audience at affordable prices,” he said. “Our audiences can expect to see stunning performances.” DCMet-LesMisWebAd-1r (1) Les Misérables plays from January 17-February 9, 2014 at CenterStage at the Reston Community Center – 2310 Colts Neck Road, in Reston, VA.

Performances are January 17th, 18th, 24th, 25th, 26th, 30th, and 31st, and February 1st, 6th, 7th, 8th, and 9th at 8 PM. There are 2 PM matinees on January 26th and February 9th, and on February1st and 8th there are both 2:00 p.m. and 8:00 p.m performances.. For tickets, call the box office at (703) 476-4500 x3, or purchase them online. CenterStage is handicap accessible and offers listening devices for the hearing impaired.


Meet the Lovers of Reston Community Players’ ‘Les Misérables’ by Diane Schnoor.


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