December 2, 2016

Spotlight on Alumni: Sheri Godda

Sheri Godda
Sheri Godda

Sheri Godda is a graduate of York University’s Dept of Theatre (BFA Acting 2013) and most recently a graduate of The Second City Conservatory (2016) She won a MyTheatre ‘Best Supporting Actress’ award for her work in Brecht’s, The Resistible Rise of Arturo Ui where she played 8 characters spanning various ages and genders. She was nominated for the Tim Sims Encouragement Fund comedy award for her work in the Second City Conservatory. Sheri is the other half of the improv comedy duo GoddaKuch. She is apart of an all female improv troupe called WWF. She co-created and produces Roast Beats, a monthly musical improv show.  Since graduation, she has performed in multiple shows with indie theatre company Echo Productions. She is starring in a web series titled, At Sea which is to be released in 2017. You can also catch her in her first principle role  in the Murdoch Mysteries season 10 finale. Sheri has been  accepted into The Second City House Company Ensemble  (currently featuring York Acting alum Christian Smith) where she will perform every Friday at The Second City John Candy Box Theatre.

What attracted you to York in the first place?

Before I auditioned for York, I attended a workshop for graduating high school students interested in the theatre program. Associate professor Mark Wilson ran an acting class for us in a studio at York. I fell in love with the class and the atmosphere. Four months later I auditioned for the program and fell in love with it even more. I didn’t audition for any other theatre program because I knew York was were I wanted to be.

What are you doing for the first summer out of the program?

My first summer out of York, I was lucky enough to get an agent, and began auditioning for TV and Film. My graduating class and I had the pleasure of remounting one of our final shows at York, The Resistible Rise of Arturo UI. I also became involved with an indie theatre company, Echo Productions. Since graduation I have performed in four of their mounted productions.

Do you have any advice or tips for York students just about to graduate? about to join the job market?

Take improv classes, acting-for-on-camera classes and… FAIL. Do not let yourself fear failure. Failure is where I’ve learned the most valuable lessons. By taking risks and failing, I’ve learned to be a better actor and improviser. Also, take your time! There is no rush to book a gig right out of school. It’s about enjoying the journey! You define your own success.

Did connections, friendships, relationships you made at York help you afterward?

Absolutely! The friends I made in the theatre department are now life long friends that are always there to support the projects I’m involved in. I’ve performed in multiple projects with my acting conservatory colleagues to date. The friends I made in the Film program hired me for my first paid web series project! Most recently my improv duo GoddaKuch was created with fellow York Theatre alumni Victoria Kucher.

Improv duo "GoddaKuch", featuring Victoria Kucher and Sheri Godda.
Improv duo “GoddaKuch”, featuring Victoria Kucher and Sheri Godda.

In which ways has your education at York, and in Theatre in particular, helped you in work and life?

One thing that I took from my training in theatre at York that stands out for me is a book we read in voice class called, Mastery: The Keys to Success and Long-Term Fulfillment by George Leonard. In it I discovered my personality tendencies that are obstacles to achieving mastery in my career and life. This book has helped me focus on understanding and enjoying the plateaus and steady successes in the journey to mastery.
My theatre experience from York has also helped me immensely when I improvise. Performing improv is a rush of adrenaline. It is a skill to be able to stay grounded within this type of exhilarating atmosphere. Thanks to the intensive Voice and Movement training I received, listening to my body and finding my breath in high energy situations is what helps me do my best work. As a whole, my experience in theatre at York helped hone my tools as an actor and ignited my drive for a personal integrity that I take to every project in which I’m lucky enough to be involved. My acting mentor and good friend Melee Hutton gave me this send off when I graduated, “the question is not how to survive, but how to thrive with passion, compassion, humour and style.”

Sheri Godda backstage for Echo Productions’ Dr. Jeckyll and Mr. Hyde. (Photo: Samantha Falco)