Libby Rue is an actress that can be seen in Alice’s Wonderland Bakery. She voices the main character of Alice on the show. Alice’s Wonderland Bakery is Disney Junior’s fantastical new animated series inspired by the world of “Alice in Wonderland.”. The series premieres Feb. 9 at 10:30 a.m. on Disney Junior and Disney Channel. The first few episodes will also be available to stream on Disney+. YEM was able to speak with Libby about what she learned about baking, similarities and differences she has to her character, and how she got into the character of Alice.
Young Entertainment Mag: What specifically drew you to this project? How did you get involved?
Libby Rue: I was provided the opportunity to audition for this project by my agent. I knew from the first time I read the script that I wanted to be a part of this project. I absolutely love Alice and Wonderland is such a magical place. The opportunity to bring such an iconic part of the Disney vault to a new generation of kids and their families was beyond anything I had imagined.
YEM: Did you learn more about baking while playing this role?
Libby: I don’t know that I learned more about baking while playing this role but it definitely inspired me to spend more time in the kitchen and try new recipes. I am not the best baker but it is a work in progress. My favorite things to make right now are anything for breakfast and of course chocolate chip cookies.
YEM: How familiar were you with Alice in Wonderland prior to starring in this show?
Libby: I have loved Alice for as long as I can remember. I have watched all of the Disney versions: the original 1951animated movie, the 2010 live action version and its sequel, Through the Looking Glass. I think I was first introduced to the world of Wonderland when I was cast as Tall Alice in a local children’s theatre production at the age of 6. There were 3 girls who played Alice in the show: one was Alice, one was small Alice and I was Tall Alice. Alice eats and drinks things throughout the story that cause her to grow and shrink causing her to get into trouble and also to get out of it. The creators of our show have said they were inspired by all the food and drinks in the original story and that is what led them to create Alice’s Wonderland Bakery.
YEM: What was your experience like working with each of the directors on set? Did you get to see anyone while recording or was it just you in a booth saying lines?
Libby: Everyone I worked with on this project was so kind and amazingly talented at what they do. When I recorded dialogue I worked with our Executive producer, who is also one of the writers, Chelsea Beyl, and our dialogue director, Maria Estrada. When I worked on music it was with Chelsea and our composer John Kavanaugh. They were all so nice and we had a lot of fun getting to know each other. Due to the pandemic we did not meet in person. I recorded from the booth in the recording studio and they were on a big television screen in front of me via Zoom. They could see and hear me and I could see and hear them but we were all int different locations. I hope I get to meet them in person one day!
YEM: Are there any big similarities or contrasts between you and Alice?
Libby: Alice and I are both very curious and our friends and family are very important to us. Alice loves to bake things to bring happiness and spread joy to those around her. I love to make gifts for my friends too but it is usually little notes and recently I have been having fun making beaded jewelry. Alice is more adventurous than I am. That is something I admire about her. She is always willing to try new things. I tend to be a little more cautious.
YEM: What was your favorite part about being a part of this show?
Libby: Even though I have not met all of them in person (yet), my favorite part of working on this show has been the people I have had the opportunity to work with. Everyone is so passionate, dedicated, and fun. Meeting some of my fellow cast mates during the EPA was definitely a highlight. I sat on a panel with Donald Faison and Bobby Moynahan, who are both hilarious as well as the amazingly talented Eden Espinoza.
YEM: What would you like for viewers to take away from this series?
Libby: I would like viewers to take away the importance of community. Each person is a unique part of their community and can bring something no one else can. I would also like people to see the power of kindness and how small acts of kindness can have a big impact on others.
YEM: Did you have a specific process for getting into the character of Alice?
Libby: I don’t have a specific process for getting into character. Alice and I have a lot in common in terms of personality and she comes pretty naturally to me. She does speak a little higher than I do so sometimes it takes a few trial runs on some lines before I get the voice where it needs to be. I only read each episode once before I record so things come more naturally and not over rehearsed. The songs are a different story. Those I rehearse a lot both on my own and with my vocal coach.
YEM: Is it weird talking into nothing and not interacting with other cast members?
Libby: I don’t really feel like I am talking into nothing since I have people on the big screen in front of me who I interact with. Maria, my dialogue director, plays all the other parts while I am recording. Sometimes, if they have already recorded some of the other parts they will play those back for me as well. When you audition for voice over you only read your own lines with nothing in between so having someone else read the other lines in between is definitely more fun.
YEM: What did you learn working on Alice’s Wonderland Bakery that you will take with you on future projects?
Libby: I have learned a lot about music and recording music. I started in musical theatre so I have been singing for a long time but recording music is different. John Kavanaugh is an amazing composer; each song is unique. He incorporates many different styles and rhythms in the music for this show so there is a lot of preparation needed before each song is recorded. I feel very fortunate to be working with him and having the opportunity to bring his music to life.
YEM: What was the most challenging for you and how did you overcome it?
Libby: Learning that everything does not need to be perfect the first time and that some days are better than others was challenging for me in the beginning. I don’t like to feel like I am letting people down and some days when things didn’t go as well as I liked or we had to do one line 10x I would let it get to me. The longer I worked with the team I realized that it’s ok. Some days are like that, just keep swimming!
YEM: What’s next for you?
Libby: I have had some fun auditions lately and have my fingers crossed for a special project, so we’ll see. I also have an exciting announcement but need to wait a little bit longer. I can’t wait to share it with everyone soon!