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HomeNews & StoriesAlumna’s Path to ‘Fiddler’ Full of Radio, Weddings, Baseball

Alumna’s Path to ‘Fiddler’ Full of Radio, Weddings, Baseball

Cast of Fiddler on the Roof
The cast of Fiddler on the Roof. Emerson alumna Carol Beaugard ’78 is in the middle in purple. (Photo credit Joan Marcus)

By David Ertischek ’01

Being an on-air television wedding planner, working for Major League Baseball, starring in a national tour of Fiddler on the Roof – that’s the unique career path of Carol Beaugard ’78.

Since October 2018, Beaugard has been performing as Yente in Fiddler across the country, and now she’s back in Boston for run at the Emerson Colonial Theatre, through March 8.

While Beaugard always wanted to act, her first major at Emerson was Communications Disorders.

“I thought I would be working in a theatre program with the deaf. I have partial hearing loss myself,” said Beaugard.

But after working in clinics, her professors said she wasn’t going to succeed in the field because she didn’t possess enough emotional detachment.

She ended up at WERS, hosting three shows, including one that consisted of reading news to the blind. She ended becoming the program director, and among other things, introduced a bluegrass show that was hosted by future comedian Steven Wright ’78, who didn’t have his well-known droll delivery yet.

Carol Beaugard headshot

Beaugard went back to New York City and became an announcer and producer for radio stations.  

In 2006, she was running her own wedding planning business, Affairs of Distinction, when she ended up on the reality TV show, Whose Wedding Is It Anyway?

“I tended to attract clients who were in Europe and they didn’t understand how American paying processes worked. There was this one commercial clip where I said if they didn’t pay the bills there’s not going to be a wedding,” laughed Beaugard.

Fast forward to 2013, when she started doing community theatre.

“My husband knew me through radio work. He said, ‘I’ve seen you do radio, you’re fantastic at public relations, and you’ve done event planning, but of all the jobs I’ve watched you execute, [acting] is your calling. You should be doing theatre,’” said Beaugard.

She started auditioning and landing roles in community theatre, off-off-Broadway, and little films, all while sporadically taking acting classes.

That led to her full-time job as a device coordinator for Major League Baseball’s official website. The job was perfect for Beaugard. It wasn’t task heavy, so she was able to audition and go back to school for acting at William Esper Studios.

“Because of the salary and benefits, I was able to afford cosmetic dentistry, which I needed to do for on-camera work,” said Beaugard.

Two women sit in chairs while a group of students it on the floor.
Carol Beaugard ’78 joined a Performing Arts class for a Q&A after her ‘Fiddler on the Roof’ cast mate and dance captain Jessica Altchiler’s taught a master class.

She caught her big break being cast as Yente in the classic musical Fiddler on the Roof. The national tour hit the road in October 2018, and she’ll be ending her tour May 17, 2020.

For those who don’t know, Yente is a matchmaker. But Beaugard is not even close to being a yente, and she doesn’t expect that to be a career.

“No, I’m terrible at matchmaking,” laughed Beaugard. “It’s so funny. All across the country, backstage there’s one woman who’s talking to me about her son, sometimes a daughter, but mostly a son, and how they want them matched up. I just politely shy away from that because I’m terrible at matchmaking.”

And all the time while on tour Beaugard continues to hone her craft taking online Skype classes with teachers, meeting with casting agents, managers, and taking workshops.

“The studying of acting never ends,” said Beaugard.

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