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One of the most staggering things about In the Heights? It’s Leslie Grace’s feature debut. Given all of her accomplishments in the music sphere, one might expect her to nail the song and dance numbers, but she also brings a level of nuance and heart to her performance that feels like a skill learned via a great deal of experience.
Grace plays Nina, a Washington Heights resident who’s returning home after her first year at Stanford University. The whole neighborhood is extremely proud of her and has sky high hopes for everything she’s bound to achieve, but inside, Nina’s struggling and wants to drop out. The pressure Nina is under leaps off the screen courtesy of Grace’s performance and her ability to give the viewer access to the push and pull of Nina’s situation. The motivation is there, but is it enough to overcome the pressure of what it means to be someone who “made it out?”
Check out this episode of Collider Ladies Night to hear all about Grace’s supportive family, what it was like auditioning for In the Heights, the invaluable note she received from director Jon M. Chu, her pet turtles and so much more!
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