We're getting closer to the opening of BROKEN AND ENTERED in the Studio Theatre next Friday night with previews on Wednesday and Thursday. One "Rebel" we will get to know through this show is Vern, played by Jonathan Wainwright. Here's a closer look at his perspectives about the show and his character.
What is it like working on a brand new play? And having access to the playwright, Kurt McGinnis Brown?
Working on something brand new is different from an established/often produced type piece one in that there is a lot of discussion of basics, like timelines and even what the whole point is. Not that you don't discuss those things in other productions, but sometimes with a new piece those discussions can last, well, until the end of the run sometimes. Having access to the playwright, now, can certainly help simplify the things I just mentioned. Plot points and character motivations that seem hazy can be quickly clarified so the actor can get to the heart of the matter, so to speak, without worrying that the play is being taken to a place not intended or wanted.
What are some key characteristics of Vern? Why?
Vern is intense, angry, but very thoughtful at the same time. Trying to reign in the thoughts to form a cohesive plan of self improvement leads to bad things and good things, and bad things that can be good things, eventually. There are lots of why's, as there are in any of our own thoughts and actions, some more present and clear than others, some less obvious, and less dark than may be assumed.
Describe one of your favorite moments in theatre. How has it shaped who you are today?
As much as I love being on stage with my wife, Laura Gray, and as little as we have actually had the opportunity for that, I'd say my favorite moment in theatre has yet to happen. But I can't wait.
Jonathan Wainwright and Georgina McKee in CRIMES OF THE HEART (2011)
If your character could spend a day in Milwaukee, where would they go and what would they do?
I think Vern would make a large list of the things you are supposedly supposed to do in Milwaukee, but end up having a burger down by the lake, enjoy it immensely, walk to the Summerfest grounds, see if there's nothing going (faulty info), try to find out how to get to the Harley Museum, but then realize the art museum is right there, but it's closed. Then he'd go to Shaker's.