It starts with a visit to Scooter Mortimer who preps my hair for the Mary Poppins wig, covering my head with little pin curls and a cap.
Once hair is prepped, I head to makeup.
"Wow, I have my own name on my makeup."
"Yes, you have your own Mary Poppins magic box," makeup artist LaTrice Edwards tells me. "This is all of your practically perfect equipment that you need."
In person, Mary's makeup is positively garish but under the intensely bright lights of the stage, the look is fresh and natural.
Next Scooter puts on my wig and I hit wardrobe with clothing supervisor John Furrow. A few minutes later, I'm starting to feel very Mary.
"For the final touches, we'll go get your hat, your bag and your umbrella," Furrow says.
Then we're off for a spot of tea with Stephanie Leigh, the actress who plays Mary Poppins on tour.
"OK, let's work on the Mary Poppins stance, as they like to say," Leigh advises me. " First of all, she's always in first position."
First position is heels together, toes pointed out, very prim and proper.
"Hold the umbrella kind of daintily so you're not choking the parrot," Leigh offers, but I think I was choking him.
Along with magic, Mary uses some favorite catch phrases to get things done.
Best foot forward, spit spot, and practically perfect, as Mary Poppins would say.
The show runs through this Sunday at the Academy of Music. Check it out and compare Karen's look to the pros. You can catch more of her magical transformation this Saturday at 7pm on FYI Philly.