Elle Gendreau: In it for the Love of the Play

Updated: Nov 2, 2018

By Julia Smith

Gendreau (bottom left) with her fellow cast members in "Hairspray", the musical.

Elle Gendreau is known around ORR as someone who can do it all. Born in Fall River before moving to Mattapoisett, Elle is a sweet soul who can always be found helping out in the preschool. Elle also performs in theatrical productions in her free time and has starred in productions both at Old Rochester and the Little Theatre of Fall River.

Her most recent performance in Ragtime at the Little Theatre of Fall River, playing Evelyn Nesbit, debuted May 10-13th. This was her 5th performance with this theater company. Elle has been involved with productions since she was 5 years old, when she performed in Cinderella. Since then, she has fallen in love with the art. Her parents have played a big role, so to speak, at the Little Theater. Her father, Aaron Gendreau-Visco, was the co-director of Ragtime and was in charge of production design. Elle’s mother, Tracy Fiore, was a part of the Ensemble in the show as well. When asked why Elle participates in plays with this company in addition to doing plays at ORR, she said, “I see so many hardworking people doing what they love and putting on these shows.” Elle loves working with her family and watching these plays come together.

Gendreau has been in 3 plays with the Old Rochester Drama Club: Sweeney Todd, Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat, and Noises Off. Her favorite was Noises Off, which was the first play she had been in that wasn’t a musical. Noises Off had a very interesting dynamic from scene-to-scene, which she loved being a part of.

Gendreau holds the ORR Drama club in a special place in her heart, saying, “Being in the drama club has made me get to know people I probably would not have crossed paths with otherwise, Chris Savino, Ceci Prefontaine.” Chris Savino, a graduated Old Rochester Senior has been in productions with Elle both with the ORR Drama Club and the Little Theater of Fall River. “Elle welcomed me into her group at the Little Theatre. I learned so much working with her there, and for that I will always be thankful.”

In early 2018, Elle finished up with Ragtime, her fifth play at the Little Theatre of Fall River. Others she had participated in throughout the years were Legally Blonde, Hairspray, Into the Woods, and more. Gendreau said she prefers the Little Theatre of Fall River because, “it is more technical, and they are on another level of professionalism. I have gained more expertise working with skilled actors.” Working with committed adults at the Little Theater of Fall River has shown Elle a different side of theater than high school productions.

Looking back at her time in various productions, Elle’s favorite role she’s played was Tammy in Hairspray at the Little Theater of Fall River. She said, “I just got to dance throughout the whole show and that is my absolute favorite thing to do during a production.” Elle Gendreau, having spent time working with both a community theater company and a high school drama club, has gained expertise and plenty of memories. She is ending her Senior year at Old Rochester and will move onto Roger Williams University in Rhode Island, but Elle plans to continue participating in theatrical productions for as long as possible.


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