|Bingo gets pestered by a squirrel.|
BACT: Tell us a bit about your performance background. How did you get involved with theatre? Is theatre your main job, or do you have another job(s) as well?
Andrew: I began my theater career in the 4th grade as Uncle Albert in Marry Poppins, singing "I Love to Laugh." And not much has changed since. I still love to laugh and make others laugh. In high school I was part of an improv troupe, and then I went to University of California, Santa Cruz and studied theatre. At UCSC I was a member of a long-form improv troupe and performed in many shows with the University and with Shakespeare Santa Cruz (now known as Santa Cruz Shakespeare). As a sophomore, I took a class in physical theatre and knew right away that this was what I wanted to do. I started a physical comedy troupe called Pi. Once I graduated I went to clown college in San Francisco with various members of Pi. Since then I have traveled throughout North America performing at festivals, circuses, corporate events, and on the street.
BACT: Is theatre your primary line of work?
Andrew: I have worked many jobs in the theatre. I worked as a carpenter for two years while in Santa Cruz. I then worked as a stage manager for Teatro ZinZanni for four years. Currently my main job is performing. I do some teaching and stage managing as well.
BACT: What did you go to get into the character of Bingo?
Andrew: I watched a lot of videos on YouTube. I then spent time watching my house mate's dog and dogs on the street. The most helpful thing I did was spend time with Murray. Murray is a honest-to-goodness Basset Hound. Lynn Eve, his trainer, was kind enough to bring him over and we spent an afternoon together. Lynn showed me pictures and videos, and we wandered to the dog park where Murray was in his element. I watched how he walked, ran, drooled, and interacted with other dogs and humans.
BACT: How would you describe the character Bingo?
Andrew: How would I describe Bingo: "Ruff, Ruff, Bow Wow, Ruff, Ruff, hooooooooooooooooooowl!"
BACT: Very insightful! What is it like playing an animal character - especially the only non-speaking, animal character on-stage?
Andrew: I love playing animal roles because it allows me to express my story with my body. Animals have very little sub-text, they act and do what needs to be done. I love being able to tell a story without words. Audiences can tell how I am feeling with a slight turn of the head or a quick movement. Since this play is a new work, the lines and songs where changing almost everyday, but not mine. My lines stayed the same and all I had to worry about was not being in the way.
BACT: What do you hope kids and their families take away from watching Ladybug Girl & Bumblebee Boy The Musical?
Andrew: I hope that our audiences leave laughing. I want to bring a smile to people's faces and leave them in a happier mood than when they came in, and not just the kids. When I took on this project, I told the director that I didn't just want the kids to laugh, but I wanted to make the parents, and especially the Dads, laugh. I want there to be something in the show for everyone, and I like to think we are doing just that. I think people are leaving our show with a smile on their face.
For tickets and more info on Ladybug Girl & Bumblebee Boy, The Musical, visit our website!