Today@Sam Article

Alumni Spotlight: Bearkat Hits The Big Stage

March 5, 2024
SHSU Media Contact: Mikah Boyd

OYF7.jpgGlendaliris Torres-Greaux was born to dance. While many may claim the same, Torres-Greaux’s destiny for the stage was shown in the second grade, where she would receive marks for getting up and dancing during class.

Even though Torres-Greaux had no problem expressing herself through dance, she initially struggled to communicate verbally after moving to Texas from Puerto Rico at seven years old.

“I started doing theater because I was really shy and my English wasn’t very good, so to help me overcome my fear of speaking in public, my mom put me in a theater camp,” Torres-Greaux said. “Ever since then, I’ve always loved it, but I didn’t really take it seriously as a career until I was a junior or senior in high school.”

The combination of Torres-Greaux’s passion for dancing and early experience on stage offered a glimpse toward her future as a nationally touring musical actress in “On Your Feet!”, which centers around the story of 26-time Grammy award winning power couple, Gloria and Emilio Estefan.

When casting calls came in for the national tour of the show, Torres-Greaux was prepared. During her time studying musical theatre at Sam Houston State University, she had starred in numerous productions, including leading roles in “Hands on a Hard Body” and “Once on This Island.” Aside from having leading roles in both, the two shows stood out in her memory due to the complexity of the characters and the powerful stories they told.

GlendaOYF2.pngOn top of her experience on SHSU’s stage, she had performed, “On Your Feet!” in Puerto Rico while she was still working on her degree. The experience came to her thanks to friends and family sharing the casting call with her and encouraging her to pursue her dream.

“I’d been wanting to perform in Puerto Rico, and since I left when I was little, I never got to experience the island like others do,” Torres-Greaux said.

After pulling together the money she had earned as a resident advisor at SHSU, she was able to fly to the island and stay with her aunts. Once there, Torres-Greaux auditioned in front of the play’s director, Luis Salgado, who is now directing the national tour of the show. Her audition led to her landing a role in the show, which she was able to do in Puerto Rico while also working on her degree remotely thanks to the program’s flexibility.

“For my first two months of senior year, I was not at Sam Houston, I was in Puerto Rico performing,” Torres-Greaux said.

From the moment she received a part in the show, Torres-Greux says that the rest of her college career was a whirlwind. Graduating seniors in the musical theatre program participate in a senior showcase, which takes the students to New York to perform for agencies looking to sign the next great theatrical talent. Since Torres-Greaux had already proved her mettle and acquired an agent, she was able to spend that time doing an internship at Theatre Under the Stars at the Hobby Center in Houston. Upon completing her internship, Torres-Greaux moved to New York, following in the footsteps of many starlets before her.


During that whirlwind summer, Torres-Greaux sent in her audition for the national tour of “On Your Feet!” and quickly forgot about it as she hunted for ways to support herself in New York. To her surprise, not three weeks after getting moved in with a relative in the city, she received a call from her agent; she got the part.

 “I graduated, I did an internship, I moved to New York and then I got the job. It was so fast,” she said.

Torres-Greaux has been on tour since September 2023 and has found the experience challenging, but enjoyably so. Her main struggles include finding healthy meals while on the road and the exhaustion that comes with traveling wide distances between shows.

“I’m having a great time right now, but it is hard on the body sometimes because you do a show and then the next day you have to wake up early and travel to the next location and you stay on a bus for a few hours or we fly,” Torres-Greaux said.

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“On Your Feet!” has taken Torres-Greaux to theaters across the country, and while she said the travel can be grueling, she was more than happy make the trek back to Houston to perform in front of her friends and family.

“It was beautiful getting to see my family there, they got to see me on the stage, Torres-Greaux said. “It felt like I was meant to do this and I’m going to be okay. So, it was like, whatever you put your mind to and whatever you’re thinking in the moment, it’s going to happen, you just got to work.”

Her time on early bus trips and plane rides with her castmates will come to an end in April, when “On Your Feet!” closes out at Hard Rock Live in Hollywood, Florida. Even with the deadline an arms-distance away, Torres-Greaux is diligently taping and sending auditions out for future shows, knowing that a golden opportunity can come when she least expects it.

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