With Little Women the Musical currently playing at Park Theatre in London, Anastasia Martin can be seen in the role of Beth with the run continuing until 19th December. Anastasia was in the cast of the vampire series Heirs of the Night playing Alisa von Vamalia, which aired in the UK on CBBC, and alongside her co-star Lance West, she was a guest on Saturday Mash-Up. Having made her first screen appearance in 2015 as Peet’mat in Legends, Anastasia has most recently worked on the upcoming projects In From the Cold and Wolves of War, the latter of which will mark her feature film debut. Answering our questions, Anastasia speaks about performing as Beth in Little Women the Musical, playing Alisa von Vamalia in Heirs of the Night and her upcoming projects.
You are currently playing Beth in Little Women the Musical at Park Theatre, how is the run going so far?
The run is going really well, thank you! I’m having a lovely time with the cast and the rest of the team. It’s a really great group of people telling a timelessly heartwarming story that the audiences seem to be enjoying and I’m loving it!
Was there anything that drew you to the production and what is Beth like to play?
I’ve loved Little Women for a very long time. The novel, as well as various film adaptations that I have loved, definitely drew me to the production, as well as the beautiful music. Beth is really interesting to play because although she is quiet, there is a lot going on underneath her bashful exterior – still waters run deep as they say – and I have really loved exploring what’s going on when she’s not speaking, as well as her fun side when she blossoms in the comfort of her home.
How is it being part of the cast and returning to perform on stage?
It’s been really lovely getting to work with such a great group of incredibly talented people. We’ve got really close over the run which has been such a joy and I think helps with feeling like we really are a family on stage. Returning to the stage has been really interesting as I feel like I’ve changed a lot since the last time I was on the stage and I’ve been relearning a lot of things that I haven’t done in a while as well as bringing things to it that I’ve learned since then. Being able to perform to a live audience is so exciting though and seeing how the show continues to grow is so rewarding as well.
Do you have a favourite aspect of working on a musical?
Being able to express myself through song and movement as well as speech is such a gift. I think there’s something really transcendent about music which allows you to feel something you often can’t when it’s just words.
Can you tell us about your character Alisa von Vamalia in Heirs of the Night and what did you enjoy most about filming as the character?
Alisa is a young girl (and a vampire) who has grown up in Germany and has never left her house when the story starts. She goes on to have a really important role in saving the world as we know it so she’s a pretty brave and powerful girl. She’s also very stubborn and cares about those closest to her deeply which leads her into a lot of situations that put her in significant danger. I think that was my favourite part of the character – the fact that she would stop at nothing to try and protect those she cared for the most and that she didn’t always get it right.
How was it reading the script for the first time and meeting the cast?
Reading the script was really exciting because I started getting a feel of what Alisa was like as a character and also I was getting to read about all the fantasy elements and stunts that are in the show so I was fantasising about doing all of that as well.
What are some of your stand-out highlights from working on Heirs of the Night?
The incredible people I worked with and still continue to be friends with despite us living all around the world is definitely what I’m most grateful for from the experience. Of course, learning so much and getting to travel to beautiful places that I would never normally go was a blessing but it’s really the people who were so supportive, kind, so talented and so fun that made the experience really special.
You were a guest on Saturday Mash-Up with your co-star Lance West, what was this like to do?
That was so much fun! Especially as we had been in lockdown for a while at that point, it was such a joy to be able to see Lance and have fun on a game show doing all sorts of silly things. I loved it!
How was your experience filming for In From the Cold as Faina Orlov?
In From the Cold was a really interesting project to be a part of. Again, the cast and crew were incredible on and off screen, especially as we were filming at the beginning of 2021 which wasn’t easy given the conditions. Faina is such a bold and fun character and I loved transforming into her as well as speaking Russian and working with brilliant Russian actors which was a new experience for me.
What’s it like being in the cast of Wolves of War?
It was a really lovely and fun cast to be a part of. We were only filming for a short length of time but we all got on really well and had a lot of fun in the few weeks we had filming in the countryside in Suffolk.
What are you looking forward to for both projects being released?
I’m really excited for In From the Cold to be released because I think people are going to love the combination of genres and interweaving stories that we have in the series. I personally can’t wait to see all the parts that I wasn’t in because I have no idea what they look like! There are definitely going to be some very cool action scenes.
Wolves of War is the first feature film that I’ve been in so I’m really excited to see that as I really have no idea what to expect! Apart from some cool action scenes as well…
Your first screen role was as Peet’mat in Legends in 2015, what are some of your favourite memories from working on the project?
Well, I was only there for a couple of days and didn’t really have a clue what was going on but I remember feeling intrigued by the whole process, everyone having their own very specific job that they were working on to make this huge thing happen. It definitely sparked my interest in the filming world which I managed to start really understanding a few years later when I did Heirs of the Night.
Where does your love of acting come from and how did you start?
My love of acting started when I was about twelve years old, I think. I got a part in a school musical that I didn’t really want to audition for but my friend dragged me to. As I started rehearsing for it, I realised that I was really loving the process and the exploration that was happening in the rehearsal room with the creative team and the other actors. I was a very shy child and acting gave me a confidence and a place to express myself that I had never had before.
Do you have any favourite films, TV and theatre shows to watch?
I love Guillermo del Toro’s films so much. Pan’s Labyrinth is definitely one of my favourite films. He just creates such beautiful fantasy worlds with such interesting and heartbreaking characters and storylines. Amelie is also one of my favourites – I guess I love European films! In terms of TV, I’ve loved The Queen’s Gambit and Euphoria in recent years. I do also watch a lot of Friends on repeat. A theatre production that really sticks out to me was Tristan and Isolde at the Globe Theatre a few years ago. Again, it felt like a beautiful fairytale production which seems to be something I’m particularly into!
Follow Anastasia on: