That Lady from Maxim’s
nytheatre.com q&a preview by Amara Haaksman
September 24, 2012
What is your job on this show?
Where were you born? Where were you raised? Where did you go to school?
I was born and raised in Bacliff, Texas near Houston. I started doing plays and musicals at a community theater in Dickinson, called Harbour Playhouse, owned by the wonderful Bennie and Oscar Nipper, which provided me with a great artistic outlet and really introduced me to the world and magic of theater. I went to Clear Creek High School and was fortunate enough to have a fantastic drama department to immerse myself in during those wonderful high school days. It was run by two sisters, the McIntyre's, and I really believe the things they taught me and experiences they gave have created the strongest foundation a young high school actor could ask for! It propelled me to go on to get my Bachelor of Music: Music Theater at Oklahoma City University where I studied voice with the incomparable Larry Keller, and now here I am in NYC!
Who is more important in the theater: the actor, the playwright, or the director?
All three of these are extremely important, not to mention all the crew, instrumentalists, and everyone else who come together to create a show. However, I would have to say ultimately the playwright, because without their wonderful idea and ability to translate that idea into words, the show wouldn't exist. This was a discussion we had many times in a class I just took at the Barrow Group, and when you strip away everything else, the actors most important job is to honestly bring to life all the information given to us by the playwright. If we take what is given to us, internalize it and live it, the rest is history ..... and so much fun to do!
In your own words, what do you think this show is about? What will audiences take away with them after seeing it?
At the heart of it, I believe this show is about a respectable married man whose relationship with his wife is tested in a number of difficult and funny ways when a scandalous and saucy Moulin Rouge dancer finds herself in the husband's bed, much to his dismay. It is a story filled with mistaken identities and I think it will be fun for audiences to be taken on the journey and see just how much trouble these characters can find themselves in, and wonder if they can get out of it.
People who like which of the following recent Broadway shows would also probably like your show: THE BOOK OF MORMON, ONCE, DEATH OF A SALESMAN, CLYBOURNE PARK?
Hmmm, this one is difficult. I am going to stray from the choices and say that many cast members and I have talked about what shows we might compare ours to, so I want to share our thoughts with you..... we feel it is like Sondheim's A Little Night Music meets Gilbert and Sullivan's The Pirates of Penzance.
Can theater bring about societal change? Why or why not?
Sure. Sometimes the most important thing to bring about social change is educating on a topic or exposing people to a new viewpoint of an issue they thought they knew everything about. I think theater can have the ability to do that. When the playwright brings something important to life in the text and the actors and directors bring it to the stage and expose people to it I think it could have a huge impact on bringing people together on some social issue. I remember seeing a production of The Diary of Anne Frank when I was a little girl. I didn't know anything yet about the holocaust and was so captured by her story, I found myself determined to learn all I could about a time period I had not been exposed to before. The ability the theater had to get me so excited to immerse myself in learning about an important part of history is one of the reasons I wanted to become an actor.