We've known each other a few years now and I just saw you as Kent in Neil Labute’s "Reasons To Be Pretty" on the Hollywood Fringe. Your character is very raw and emotional, you shred the air with fury, yell at the skies in punishment for not moving to your whim. Your character has a God complex, thinks that all people move to his demands even in his absence. Volatile with a raging libido. The other actor your playing opposite by contrast is very detailed and specific in his work, you can see he's working things out internally whereas you want to dominate your environment.
What's been the experience like on this one where one actor is acting from his gut and the other his head?
Sorry for the late reply. But I would love to answer your question. Thank you again for watching. It was great to see you, catch up and to see you in the audience. Front row!
My character, Kent, is one that can be found represented in several of Neil Labrute productions. There is a similar character in Fat Pig and The Shape of Things. I think you described him quite accurately. He is one who on the surface can be described as shallow but who is in fact, like all humans, internally complex in his own way. He is without a doubt the most openly shallow character in the play, not afraid to speak his mind and manipulate those closest to him for his own personal gain. I find that to be a quite refreshing quality to have as a human being. Although I don’t approve of his infidelity, I do understand why would be driven down that path and avoid being judgemental of him as one must do when approaching any role. I could ramble about this for paragraphs.
But to answer your question, the experience has been a positive one. Every acting experience is a positive one in my opinion even the ones where productions are flooded with negativity and unprofessionalism. I find there’s always more of a positive to gain than a negative.
In this case, it gives me the ability to get in the driver’s seat in each scene and take it where I want it to go and get my partner to do what I want to do, which is what my character aims to do regardless so it’s justified. So i’m allowed to be absolutely free and raw which I love. However, I did find that during the rehearsal process there were times that I would get caught in my own freedom and fail to tune in to my partner and the imaginary circumstances of the play, and lose track of my character’s internal life and objectives, which is a terrible thing to do as an actor. But it was a habit that was simple to shake off once it happened. It’s been a process that’s allowed me to have that freedom but at the same time be fully present to the given circumstances and everything my partner gives me. And you’re absolutely right about Matt, he’s extremely detailed and internal, especially with his character Greg. It’s been a pleasure working with him and everybody in this production, and it is great to see him tackle his first lead role. As his roommate and close friend, I am happy for him to get the opportunity and pressure to carry a play, it’s a tremendous task and a growing experience for any actor.
I feel the kind of emotional investment that you made in the character is worth the price of admission, you really see man in all his flaws yelling at the skies thinking that he's shaping the whole world with his infantile cries, but really he's just destroying it. It was evident that to have been too calculating with this performance would have been besides the point. I feel that with every part, but with this one in particular that motivation is more important than intellectual understanding, would you say that was true for you?
Also where and when can audiences see this play?