Fireside Chats with Cast Member Rebecca Kopec
What should we know about the lovely Rebecca Kopec?
Rebecca is an actor, singer, and merrymaker living in New York. As an actor and collaborator, she likes telling stories full of both comedy and heart. Her favorite tales to tell are the ones that make you laugh one second and have you tearing up the next, pieces people can connect with and relate to. To her, connection is the most important aspect of art. Along with Fireside Mystery Theatre, she's also a member of the theatre company Our Bar where she gets to create and play some wonderful characters once a month.
Can you recall the first audio drama you heard and what you found compelling about it?
I was actually a late bloomer to the audio drama genre. The first one I really remember grabbing onto was a podcast called The Black Tapes. Like much of the world, I had been caught up in Serial when that first aired. Once it was done, I was looking for something similar and came across that podcast. I initially thought it was an actual documentary-style investigative show looking into whether or not a phenomenon was supernatural. It wasn't until the second episode that I started to question it, but by that time I was already sucked in. I've since listened to all the podcasts Minnow Beats Whale productions has put out.
When did you first get involved in Fireside Mystery Theatre, and what drew you to the creative hearth?
The incomparable Ali Silva brought me in! Our mutual friend and fellow Fireside cast member, James Kleinmann, introduced us one day and it was Friendship at First Sight. We knew we needed to work together someday. My first episode was Unraveled Travel which was such a wonderful introduction to both the genre and the team. I fell in love right then and there.
As a performer, what do you find most satisfying about the process of creating audio drama?
Like many have said before me, the ability to play characters I wouldn't otherwise have the opportunity to play is most satisfying. Recently, I was actually able to play a historical woman, Anne Spoerry, as both a young woman as well as when she was in her 80s, in 50.1 She’s a Killer Queen: “Never Explain." And I didn't have to deal with any old-age makeup or CGI editing to make it happen!
Tell us about the character you've found most satisfying to play so far throughout your Fireside career and why?
This is a tough one, because one of the things I enjoy about Fireside is how much fun even the smaller roles with one or two lines are! My favorite so far, however, would probably have to be Helen in 51.1 All Aboard! “The Sleeper Car.” She's sassy with a strong feminist bend, and playing her gave me the chance to work on my mid-Atlantic accent!
Who is your favourite Fireside character you didn't play?
Ooh good question! Perhaps Anita the Fortune Teller? I love Ali's take on her from her zest to her fun accent!
Which show series or individual play produced by Fireside are you proudest of and why?
I really liked when we performed a live show about Eliza Jumel at the actual Morris-Jumel Mansion in NYC. In general, I love immersive theatre and to be able to tell a ghost story where the ghost herself is supposed to haunt? It's just *chef's kiss*.
When you're not performing with Fireside Mystery Theatre what occupies your time?
I'm a big time pop music fan, and you can usually find me traveling all over the world seeing some of my favorite artists perform live with my arms wrapped around my best friends belting out our favorite tunes at the top of our lungs. Speaking of belting things out, I'm also a karaoke queen and a frequent patron of Marie's Crisis, a showtune piano bar in the West Village. I'm also a brand new puppy mom, and you can find me obsessively talking about how adorable my sweet fuzzball Leo is. He's actually sleeping on my feet right now...
Which podcast, aside from Fireside Mystery Theatre of course, do you listen to regularly, and what do you love about it?
So many! I love putting on podcasts while I get ready or while I'm cooking or going for walks. My current rotation includes Keep It, Stuff You're Wrong About, Scam Goddess, Scared To Death, Tanis, Pod Save America, and obviously Fireside Mystery Theatre.
Which horror movie, scary book or play has had the biggest impact on you and why?
No question: Stephen King's It. I saw the original miniseries at FAR too young an age, and it very much stuck with me to the point where even as an adult I'm a little hesitant being in a bathroom without any light on. I eventually read the book as an adult and also really enjoyed the two new movies. In general, I'm a pretty big horror fan and love a good scary tale!
Have you ever had a supernatural experience in real life?
I like to think I have. The community theatre I worked with growing up was thought to be haunted, and I definitely had one experience where I felt I actually saw Alice the ghost. I'd like to think there's more out there that can not be explained and that we know nothing about.
Where can people find out more about you or connect with you?