What’s your first theatrical memory? What show made you think, “I’m impressed by theater”? And what (different?) show made you think, “I want to get involved in doing theater”?
In 1976, I saw my first real show. We had season tickets to the Golden Gate Theater in San Francisco, and we saw A Chorus Line. I was about 20. We got the better of the two casts that were doing the national tour at that time — in L.A. and San Francisco, we got Donna McKechnie. My sister and I sat in the third tier, way up high, and I was blown away. My sister said, "I don't know what was more fun — watching the play or watching you.
What kind of theater did you do in high school? And in college?I was going to community college in the Bay Area and doing a business major, but I kept switching to the theater classes. And my report card came home and my father asked, "What the hell are you doing?"
Other than theater, what are your hobbies?
Gardening. I have five acres up by Mount Spokane High School.What’s coming up now?
You have tremors, shaky hands. What’s your diagnosis and prognosis?I’ve gotten so that when kids ask — and kids do ask — I tell them it’s because I eat too much Jell-o.
Well, I have very few friends but quite a lot of acquaintances. I think of friends as the people who, when you really need something done right now, they'll come over. I have friends I've known for 25 years, and I have friends I've known for six months. It's just a bond that you get over time.
Who’s your hero? Do you have any former heroes who, for you at least, have fallen off their pedestals?
"Heroes" -- I don't really like the term. I mean, these sports people or actors or politicians, and everyone regards them as heroes ... I just don't get it. Anybody can be a hero in the situation -- the mom who lifts the car off the kid.
What mildly (or wildly) popular activity, sport or pastime holds just about zero interest for you personally? Why?
Tell me a little about Harding in Cuckoo’s Nest. Your performance is wonderful. What discoveries about him have you made in rehearsal? How much has the part been cut for the one-hour competition version?This is the fifth one I've done. For a competition show, the director cuts it down, then runs it, then cuts it down some more. It usually takes three cuts to get it down to its essence.
Bowen’s reviews are too long. They’re too snooty. He plays favorites. He has little understanding of Aspects A, B and C of theater. He shouldn’t single out individual performers for criticisms. He’s too easy to please. He’s way too negative. He fixates on little details. He talks too much about theater in the abstract. He has a funny mustache. He’s too bald. I don’t like the way he breathes.
It's odd, in no other profession do they have anybody reviewing them publically.
Another sticky wicket – this time, about this very blog. What’s your reaction to the following?
Comments on this blog go through me. I reject about 10 percent to 20 percent of them. My criterion: If a comment is purely negative and personal, it doesn’t get in. If, however, it’s critical of an individual but also raises a valid opinion about a show or a performance, then I allow it to be posted. For technical reasons and for the foreseeable future, apparently, anonymous commenters on this blog (as distinct from the Inlander Website in general) will be able to remain anonymous and won’t be required to register with a traceable pseudonym like “Spokane Theater Nut.”
Think of “funniest backstage moments that I’ve experienced or witnessed in Spokane theater.” Now spill. (You can leave names out of it, but we hope you won’t.)