Emma Stuart-Box

Santa Clarita , California




Personal Bio

“Peach Boy, Peach Boy, could I please have one of your rice cakes?”


My grandmother’s voice echoed in my ears as I sat on her lap, aged 7, transported to a fairy tale world where a boy bursts alive from a peach and defeats the evil Ogres. At school, these stories became puppet plays or Kamishibai (paper plays) and as I got older, my grandfather would take my sister and I to Kabuki theaters where extravagant clothing, wigs and masks made these characters come to life. These childhood experiences fueled my passion for theatre and has led me to becoming a storyteller myself. 

Just as Peach Boy travels to other lands in his adventures, moving from Japan to America and back has broadened my creative outlook. I have performed in various school plays and completed IGCSE Drama (externally assessed British exam) receiving full marks for my performances and the highest score nationally. I was also awarded a scholarship to join a Japanese theater company called Theatre Himawari where I took part in seasonal performances as well as classes ranging from Shakespeare in Japanese, stage combat, traditional Japanese dance, voice training and core acting techniques. Himawari has given me opportunities to work with Japanese actors such as Yoshihiro Kurita, one of the leading exponents of interpreting Shakespeare through traditional Japanese theater. 

As a bi-cultural performer, my artistic journey has always focused on the combination and celebration of cultures and in my senior year I had the opportunity to create a devised performance for our school festival exploring the theme of overcoming cultural barriers. All of the performers were multicultural and our piece fused together elements of art, music and language from both cultures. Currently under the CalArts Access Grant,  I am pursuing a BFA in Acting at the California Institute of the Arts (class of 2026). 

Back in the fairy tale, Peach Boy was able to defeat the Ogres because he shared his homemade rice cakes with his animal friends which gave them all exceptional strengths. Similar to how Peach Boy succeeded by sharing who he is with his companions, at CalArts and beyond, I hope to contribute my own homemade rice cakes in the form of my unique background and bilingual experiences and help create performances that celebrate all walks of life and culture. 

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