Andrea Pellizzari ’23 has lived several lives. She’s been an old man and a little kid, a swamp creature and a murderer—in the theater, of course. Now, as the curtain closes on her time at Endicott, the performing arts major is warming up for her next act.
“I like playing different kinds of characters, and I don’t want to be stuck in a box or typecast,” Pellizzari said. “The ultimate goal is to be able to support myself through acting.”
The actor, who was most recently cast in the spring production of Head Over Heels, caught the acting bug early on. Her mother, a fellow theater enthusiast, encouraged her to enroll in a kids’ summer camp that produced stage productions. There, Pellizzari auditioned for her very first play, a musical, and hasn’t stopped since.
“Something about the theater feels very magical,” she said. “It’s kind of cheesy but true.”
High school gave Pellizzari even more drama opportunities. She acted in shows and helped construct sets for productions but, fast forward a few years, and she was auditioning for a different kind of role—that of an Endicott student, which proved to be a casting fit.
At Endicott, Pellizzari came into her own. “As soon as I joined the theater, I felt very welcomed. It felt like I gained a family,” she said.
Part of her role in Endicott’s theater family was bringing good vibes. As the Fun Ambassador, Pellizzari organized parties and joyful activities for her fellow cast and crew members.
“I tried to be a helpful figure in theater, to make it a better experience for people,” she said. “I also tried to be a shoulder for people when they need it. I feel like one of my strengths is that I can be very perceptive as to how other people are feeling, and I try to reach out to them when I can.”
As a Gull, Pellizzari merged her passion for acting with human psychology. While the psych minor probably won’t pursue a career in therapy, she’s fascinated by the mind and excavates the motivations of her characters to be a better actor.
“It’s not a perfect science, but I feel like my studies have helped me be more empathetic in general, more patient and understanding. That can translate to acting well because it helps you examine people better, so then you can get into roles more easily,” she said.
Pellizzari’s dual interests, and dual course loads, kept her busy. Being involved with Main Stage productions and Spotlight Drama Club productions often meant working on two plays simultaneously on top of classes. “There have been times when I’ve been at school for 10 hours straight,” she said. “Some nights I would be at rehearsal until 2 in the morning. But it was fun and I’m glad I did it.”
She soon discovered that the grind of working on Endicott stage productions wasn’t all that different than what happens in the real theater world. As a production intern with Gloucester Stage Company, she put her acting chops on the backburner to focus on creating sets and props, hanging lights, and supporting the backstage crew.
“I like working backstage, doing technical work, and now I have a lot of experience in that,” Pellizzari said.
While the internship gave her hands-on experience in painting, carpentry, and sound design, it also reinforced something she already believed: Theater is a close-knit community. “Just from the time I spent at my internship, it’s clear that everybody kind of knows everybody. It really is a community because it relies so heavily on working as a team and figuring out how to move through things together.”
During her time in Gloucester, Pellizzari forged several connections in the theater world. But only at Endicott was she introduced to her biggest inspiration: Chloe Castellano. A fellow performing arts major and Pellizzari’s current suitemate, Castellano has constantly inspired and impressed Pellizzari with her drive and ambition.
To her peers, Pellizzari is also a source of inspiration. She’s only been rejected for one acting role, back in high school, and she’s proved that it’s possible to be a successful student while also being successful on the stage.
As graduation nears, Pellizzari is committed to succeeding in the notoriously tough theater world, and she wants to do it right here.
“It might be harder in the Boston area because there are fewer opportunities, but I would like to stay near here,” she said. “I’m signed up for a couple of different casting agencies, and I feel like I’ve already built some good connections. If you put in the time and the effort and show yourself to be a good person, then opportunities will come your way.”