By Shelby Berkemeier

Bonnie Bouc, a sophomore at Western, pushed herself to new levels for the sake of the show, and her efforts paid off.

Bouc is now majoring in musical theatre, but her journey as an actress began when she was in high school. She has participated in a wide array of films and shows and has taken on many challenging roles. At Western alone, she has acted in six films and six plays.

Bouc’s favorite filming experience was Western’s 48-Hour Film Festival. This film competition challenges filmmakers to condense their creative process and produce their vision within a short time frame. Each team is given a genre, prop, line of dialogue and character at random.

Bouc has participated in the 48-Hour Film Festival twice. In the latest competition, she was assigned a drama called “Rising Star,” where she was cast as Jackie Rabbits, a snooty performer.

To prepare for this role, Bouc said her director had her participate in a rather unusual warm-up routine to get in character.

“Since the director knew I was a standoffish person, he had me stick socks in my crotch and walk around like I had a big d — -,” Bouc said.

During the last festival, her team had to record scenes and immediately “dump” the footage for editing with few breaks and barely any sleep. Though this experience was challenging, Bouc really enjoyed getting into character, singing and the all-around experience.

However, Jackie Rabbits wasn’t Bouc’s only confident character.

In the play “The Great American Trailer Park Musical,” Bouc played a stripper named Pippy.

“That was the most fun I’ve ever had as a character, because I went to a Catholic high school, and we never would have done something like that,” Bouc said.

This role was challenging for her because she not only had to work on her character role development, but she also had to work on her confidence. Bouc wasn’t used to being so over-sexualized on stage and, at first, worried about the wardrobe.

“Immediately I told the director I’m a self-conscious person, and I don’t like to show a lot of skin,” Bouc said.

The director eased her mind and assured her that Pippy could be a partially-conservative stripper. The daytime outfit consisted of high-waisted shorts, a cropped flannel and red cowgirl boots. For the evening outfit, Bouc wore leather shorts, a fringed bra and a leather button-up jacket.

But the wardrobe was only the beginning of Bouc being pushed out of her comfort zone. She also had to learn and perform a pole dance, as well as a striptease.

Bouc knows this won’t be her last challenging role. She enjoys how theatre pushes her boundaries and allows her to make new friends and grow as a person, as well as an actress.