- Yermolai Alexeyvich Lopakhin in The Cherry Orchard by Anton Checkhov, directed by Dr. Beth Cleary, Macalester College.
- Hot Blades Harry in Urinetown: The Musical by Greg Kotis, directed by Harry Waters Jr., Macalester College.
- Young Eustace in The Invention of Baseball by Thomas Buan, Minnesota Fringe Festival.
- Jacob in Green: an Elegy to Summer by Carson Krietzer, directed by Harry Waters Jr., Macalester College.
- Sergeant J. Dupreez in Statements After an Arrest After the Immorality Act by Athol Fugard, directed by James A Williams, Macalester College. Voice Work on South African Accent.
- Ensemble in The Cradle Will Rock by Marc Blitzstein, directed by Harry Waters Jr., Macalester College.
- East in Almost Maine, directed by Jim Lund. Chanhassen High School.
- Fortinbras in Fortinbras by Lee Blessing, directed by Jim Lund. Chanhassen High School.
- Aaron Fox in Curtains the Musical, directed by Jim Lund. Chanhassen High School.
- Sound Design for SLUT, Macalester College
- Set Work, Light Rig, and Strike Crew for The Cherry Orchard, Macalester College
- Set Work and Strike Crew for Urinetown: The Musical, Macalester College
- Assistant Director, songwriter, and British accent for The Invention of Baseball, Minnesota Fringe Festival
- Sound Design and Board operation for The Glass Managerie, Macalester College
National Forensics League
- 1st Place at Catholic National Forensics Tournament in Duo Interpretation
- 1st Place in Minnesota State Forensics Tournament in Creative Expression
- 1st Place at Marshall Forensics Tournament in Creative Expression
- 2nd Place at Harvard National Forensics Speech and Debate Tournament in Duo Interpretation
- 2nd place at Harvard National Forensics Speech and Debate Tournament in Humorous Interpretation
More On Acting-
Yermolai Alexeyvich Lopakhin in The Cherry Orchard by Anton Checkhov
My most recent play, The Cherry Orchard, was the “cherry” on top of my theatre education at Macalester College. Under direction of Dr. Beth Cleary, both an inspiring mind and friend, it was truly the most expansive process I’ve ever had in theatre. For the role I spent a summer researching Russian history and politics as well as worked as a landscaper and tree trimmer to feel what manual labor does to a body over time. This was a founding experience for my character, Lopakhin, who pushed through long hours of physical work both on the family farm and in the convenient store owned by his father. I remember being on stage and seeing the callouses on my hands, their rough textures brought me back to the sensation of gripping a shovel, sweating under the sun for 8 hours digging through dirt. The sensations of the memory allowed me to fall into Lopakhin’s rhythm resulting in one of my favorite acting moments, bringing to life a Chekhov classic, The Cherry Orchard.
A real rags to riches story, Lopakhin’s perseverance and progressive nature brought him out of poverty and into the peculiar position of being a buyer as he bargains for the famed cherry orchard, the very place his father brought him to work as a child. If you want to know the ending pick up some Chekhov at your local library.
Hot Blades Harry in Urinetown: The Musical by Greg Kotis
Hitting the high A’s was not something I’d done since the Metropolitan boys choir, however, with some major hydration and practice I succeeded in singing the chorus tenor part for Urinetown. It’s funny, when I first heard the name Hot Blades Harry I assumed I’d be wearing roller blades. I was in for surprise when my director, Harry Waters Jr., handed me combs. Blades were up for interpretation, I guess, I was only disappointed I wouldn’t get to make any leaps or hockey stops up on stage, how impressive that would have been! I got my feel for the risky, however, by juggling the combs on stage. Hot Blades was a bad ass.
Seargant J. Dupreez in Statements After an Arrest After the Immorality Act by Athol Fugard
Unfortunately I cannot add any pictures for this show as 2 of the 3 cast members were in full nude. The show takes place in Bontrug, South Africa, during Aparthied. It is midnight in the town library. A black man and a white woman have just finished an intimate moment. The man goes to light a match. Don’t! Please… she says. Why? He asks. What about me? I want to be seen. I want you to see me. He moves to a spot of moonlight coming in from the window. The brightest spot in our world. He says. Here I am. Me. Can you see me?
As Dupreez I came in near the end to give two police statements slightly above the stage on a platform. Below me the audience saw the man and woman’s intimate moment interrupted by police officers and interrogation, a heartbreaking conclusion following their discoveries throughout the play. Director James A Williams taught me how to play a villain while sensitizing me to the vulnerability of accused and so I am grateful to him for humbling me.
Fortinbras in Fortinbras by Lee Blessing, directed by Jim Lund. Chanhassen High School.
Fortinbras walks in to find Horatio crooning over the dead, picking up where Hamlet let off. Except, when Horatio yells to him in Shakespearean tongue instead of responding with a poetic soliloquy Fortinbras asks- why are you talking like that? A real wrench in the machine, Fortinbras was a character I connected to the most with my own life. He’s a bit of a dreamer, a clown, and a romantic, and he’s always trying to do what’s best. Of course, as trying goes, he learns a lot along the way.
Aaron Fox in Curtains the Musical, directed by Jim Lund. Chanhassen High School.
I think it’s important to know where every actor began their journey, mine began in Curtains: The Musical, a murder mystery story that whimsically shows the lives of performers behind-stage on-stage. I Miss the Music, famously sung by Jason Danieley at the Drama Desk Awards in 2007, is the song I still sing to warm up to.
Two projects I’d also like to mention from Tech Theatre and Crafting The Tangible both taught by Macalester Professor Thomas Barrett-
For Tech Theatre I decided to build a coffin for my final project, an accumulation of many of the woodworking skills practiced in the class. There was a moment where I became very frustrated with the coffin’s door hinges and Tom had to make me take a break. To say the least, I was very passionate about the creation of that coffin and learned an important lesson on patience. As much as I wanted to go ahead and try construction, I had to remember that design, math, and thinking through the of the objects use came first.
For Crafting the Tangible I created a “world” that depicts a historical moment with a “sittable” inside. I recreated the collapse of the 35W Bridge by taking over a room in the theatre department, spray painting a mural on one wall, and having many of my friends create their own tags along the rest of the room. All the while I was busy cutting and welding a steel bench that depicted one of the old green trestles. I then mixed together a sound narrative for the visitors to hear, it included a personal interview with Daniel Swartz, the last man to drive over the bridge before the collapse, as well as a number of news bits. Finally, I created dramatic lighting through the use of standing LED’s and a strobe to create a transformative experience.
The class focused on tangibility and intangibility pondering our society’s move from the material as automation, mediation, the need for sustainability, and academics leaves less people “masters of their own stuff” and more people dependent on professionals of trade. For more on the class and some of the philosophical questions we examined check out my blog under the writing tab!