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Singer, songwriter and actor: Alissa Wallace

Wallace smiles for the camera and he prepares for his role as Brad Majors (Photo courtesy of Alissa Wallace).

Belting out the song lyrics while dancing around the stage, Alissa Wallace continues to mark his path within Redwood theater. Wallace started his Redwood drama career as a freshman during COVID-19 and is now a senior in Honors Advanced Drama. After four years in the program, Wallace reflects on the time spent and community built within drama at Redwood.

“The trust that we have built amongst all of the drama classes makes the environment super positive and supportive,” Wallace said. “The teachers are amazing. They are the sweetest, most compassionate teachers you’ll ever meet.” 

The art of acting is not new to Wallace, who has been involved in drama since elementary school.

“Drama was never really a challenging thing for me. I have always been inclined towards it, even when I was younger,” Wallace said.

Natural acting ability aside, Wallace is crucial to Redwood’s program because of his attitude. Encouraging and empathetic, Wallace truly provides support for his cast members. Most recently, Wallace played Brad Majors in the Rocky Horror Picture Show put on by EPiC Drama and forged a path for new skills to be unearthed. Junior Syd Walling acted alongside Wallace in Rocky Horror and spoke to his acting ability. 

“I think [Wallace] knows how to pop on stage and also how to blend and that’s really, really important [for] any good performer,” Walling said.

Dancing alongside his cast-mates, Wallace puts on a show-stopping performance. (Photo courtesy of Redwood EPIC Drama)

Wallace spoke about how the Rocky Horror production gave him the opportunity to develop new skills and be open to new acting techniques and practices.

“This year, we’ve done more stuff with lifts and stage intimacy, which was a completely new category for me. I’ve learned that I have to develop more self-security and also feel more secure with others,” Wallace said.

Wallace’s favorite part of the production was continuing to build relationships with his fellow actors.

“There’s so much work in the play with intimacy and connection, you really had to get to know your classmates. I really enjoyed just connecting with people and making friends,” Wallace said.

Senior Dylan Weir, who has been a part of Redwood drama since freshman year, spoke to Wallace’s acting skills and performance charisma.

“He stood out like he does throughout most of the [Rocky Horror] shows because he has a very specific stage presence,” Weir said. “You can still feel his kindness emanating through all of his characters, even when he is playing characters that aren’t as nice.”

Off the stage, Wallace also writes, sings and produces his own original music which he uploads to his Spotify under the artist tag “Ashtie.” Wallace has been producing music since 6th grade where he would play his own songs on his ukulele. Wanting to advance the production quality, Wallace downloaded Ableton Live, a well-known producing program.

“One night after having literally no knowledge on how to use it, something just clicked and I made a song called Supermodel. Mixing stuff and also mastering the vocals took around 200 hours,” Wallace said.

With three songs on Spotify, Wallace’s songs were able to reach people across the globe with a large number of streamers in the US, the UK and India. Unfortunately, Wallace has received hateful comments from Redwood students but was able to approach it with a positive attitude.

“If anything, [the hate I received] was kind of a compliment because it’s like ‘how do you even know my music exists?’ The haters don’t realize when they stream my stuff, I get money from it,” Wallace said.

The result of Wallace also being a classically trained opera singer, which took years to achieve, and the extreme time commitment that comes with theater practice and productions have cultivated his creativity and talent.  

“I really do love working with Alissa, because when you work with someone who’s that dedicated and present on stage, it gives you something to bounce off of. It gives you encouragement to be present and aware on stage,” Walling said. 

With his show-stopping vocals and dramatic stage presence, Wallace is one to keep your eye on both here at Redwood and as he moves into the next chapter of his life.

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About the Contributor
Gabriella Rouas
Gabriella Rouas, Data Analyst
Gabriella Rouas is a senior at Redwood High School and is a data analyst for the Redwood Bark. Gabriella likes to spend her time reading books, exploring new places around the Bay Area and watching new movies!