Blood Type: RAGU
nytheatre.com q&a preview by Frank Ingrasciotta
October 8, 2012
What is your job on this show?
When did you know you wanted to work in the theater, and why?
I was a young boy when my older sister took me to my first Broadway musical which was "Pippin". Then followed by my first dramatic play, "Sleuth". I became fascinated with the spectacle of storytelling and knew at that moment I wanted to express myself through acting and the world of theatre!
What does solo performance do that can't be accomplished in a multi-actor play?
I believe solo performance is a powerful art form that gives the audience a more intimate exchange with an actor on stage. If done truthfully and with imagination, it can engage the audience with a deeper and relatable connection to the story.
In your own words, what do you think this show is about? What will audiences take away with them after seeing it?
The show is about many universal topics simultaneously going on at once. The most important one is how a child maneuvers and overcomes the challenges and dynamics in a family. It's also about finding peace and understanding with the story you were born with. Although it's about an Italian family, it could be any family. I'm always amazed how people want to share their own stories after seeing the show. I've performed it to diverse audiences from Off-Broadway to Atlanta and am always touched by how they relate to the story. It's the highest compliment I can receive.
Which cartoon character would you identify your show with: Bugs Bunny, Daffy Duck, Mickey Mouse, Marge Simpson?
Definitely Bugs Bunny! I make references to Bugs throughout the beginning of the show. As a child, my humor and savior was seeing the world through his eyes. Come see the show and you'll know why.
Theater is a necessary ingredient in democratic societies. Do you agree or disagree, and why?
Theatre is an important ingredient for our democratic society! Some politicans are ignorant to understanding how vital theatre is to our community and are quick to cut it during any budget crisis. They don't realize when they invest in the arts, they are investing in a culture that defines a civilized nation. The arts are educational, not just extra-curricular. Math and Science are very important, but also funding the arts empowers learning through critical thinking and builds self-esteem. I am also a teaching artist and I have personally witnessed how the arts can serve as a powerful educational tool across the curriculum. A test score is important, but it has been proven that few students retain what they've learned through teaching towards a test. However, when it is emodied, it becomes experiential learning. The arts is an avenue for experiential learning, especially during a time when young people are so inundated with technology and are losing the art of interpersonal communication.