I strive to constantly learn and develop in order to best reach out and affect change in the people who come to the theater. I believe a truthful performance is the most direct path into a person's heart. My resume is a reflection of the greatest opportunities I have had to do so.
COVID-19 and Me
Theatre for Young Audiences
It's not easy out there. I count myself incredibly fortunate that I have been able to continue working, performing, and reaching audiences in a safe way. Theatre is important, and I'm glad I get to do it. Safety is more important.
Barter Theatre was one of the first in the country to come up with a creative and as near to 100% safe as possible solution to creating and performing live, in-person theatre for an audience during a pandemic.
Barter brought a team of artists together in June of 2020. Rigorous COVID safety protocol afforded us over a year of performances at a drive-in movie theater. Audiences were able to stay in their cars to watch a live show on a raised stage and a live filmed projection of the play on the drive-in screen behind, listening to the audio through their car radios.
Between June 2020 and June 2021 I was able to be a part of The Wizard of Oz, Beauty and the Beast, Mary Poppins, Tom Sawyer, Sleepy Hollow, Dracula, Frosty, A Christmas Carol, The Princess and the Pea, The Tempest, The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe, and Alice in Wonderland with Barter Theatre.
I also had the opportunity to travel north to Auburn, NY to work with The Rev Theatre Company. I rehearsed and performed a live, virtual, one-man play for school audiences called Commander Magellan is Stuck on Mars. With a small team of socially distanced artists, we also developed a devised variety show in the theatre's Echoes series, based on writing submissions from middle school students.
This fall, I get to cross another state off the bucket list – I'm going to Maine!
I'll be acting in the Fall 2022 season with Theatre at Monmouth in A Midsummer Night's Dream and As You Like It.
I have never had the opportunity to visit Maine, so I'm thrilled not only to be performing two excellent plays but also to see a part of the country I've never seen before. This is one of the true joys of being a freelance artist.
Acadia National Park, here I come! I wonder if I'll see the Northern Lights...
I have been trained to speak to children on matters of sexual and physical abuse with Hugs & Kisses with Virginia Repertory Theatre and was able to facilitate children getting the help they need.
I have gotten to design and implement group theatre workshops with multiple companies. This has included developing virtual material for distribution during the pandemic, which involved creative direction, project management, A/V editing, and more.
I've performed on stages, gym floors, outside, and online. I have learned to set up, troubleshoot, and run sound systems, maintained sets, delegated load in and load out of venues, and driven more miles in a tour van than I can count.
Above all, I have had the opportunity to reach tens if not a hundred thousand or more young hearts and minds all over the country. It's an honor and it's a pleasure.
"Shaan Sharma is a winning choice to portray the invincible Pip. The energy Sharma brings to the stage and his capacity to handle the high and low curveballs thrust upon Pip are amazing to watch."
-Bonnie Gable, The Barter Blog
The Coast of Utopia (Voyage)
"...my personal favorite, Shaan Sharma as Vissarion Belinsky. I really enjoyed Sharma's work and thought he gave some real dimension to his character."
- Ann Efimetz, The Virginia Gazette
A Midsummer Night's Dream
"Shaan Sharma makes his entrance as Demetrius on a bicycle."
- Mal Vincent, The Virginian Pilot
The Night of the Iguana
"The standout performance for me was Shaan Sharma as Nonno...Sharma gave us an endearing and believable old man character, without becoming a caricature."
- Ann Efimetz, The Virginia Gazette