This is where I'd like to share some thoughts about acting,the process,interviews,my craft business and upcoming events

Wednesday, October 18, 2006

Shakespeare Theatre Company Fellows interview

I had the opportunity to sit with a couple of the Fellows of the Shakespeare Theatre Company. They were kind enough to answer a few interview questions for me. I met Matthew Stucky in Syracuse while doing Hamlet, Directed by Bob Moss. Now Matt is in DC and here's how he's found the experience.

1 Where are you from and how did you hear about the fellows program?

MS: I hail from Ithaca, New York in the heart of the glorious Finger-Lakes Region. For the last year I was living in New York City after finishing-up my Undergrad at Syracuse University. After doing a few projects in the city that weren't all that artistically satisfying I began looking for ways to get out of the city and refocus on the classical work that I love. Although I had heard about the Shakespeare Theater Company through its former connection to the Folger I was completely ignorant of the fellowship program until I was poking around on the website. I submit myself and got lucky enough to have been granted an audition and the rest is history.

2 How have you found the experience? (Pro's and Con's, work load)

MS: So far the experience has been wonderful. Not only do I get to witness amazing work on a daily basis, because my financial situation is taken care of by the theater, I get all the space I need to reconnect with what I love about the theater as an art-form and with myself as a human being. That has been the greatest opportunity afforded by the fellowship so far. I feel like an actor again and not a businessman... and that has made all the difference in the world. Aside from Understudying roles on the mainstage and (soon to be) performing ourselves, we get the opportunity to work privately with the staff and teachers of the company on Alexander, voice, text, and monologue work. Though, coming into the year know that in no way is this a graduate style program, I do wish there was a bit more emphasis on training. But I think I will always want that. I am always looking for the next level, especially in classical work where the text can be mined so deeply. If I was forced to describe a con to the program it would be the amount of free time we have had so far, but this is sure to be temporary and something I will miss dearly when I am performing one show and rehearsing another on top of my other responsibilities in a few weeks.

3 What's next for you?

MS: I never quite know what is next. That's part of the fun of this life. I am still with my agent in NY and every once in a while I audition for something they submit me for. But once the program is a full year with no clear end-date as of now it is a bit soon to make plans for the future. But that is part of the joy of this fellowship. I am here, now, and that is all I have to worry about for the next 6 months... the work... truly a liberating feeling.

4 My blog is focusing on a two year personal plan...Where do you see yourself in two years?

MS: It's early in my career. I am still figuring out exactly what kind of life in the theater I imagine for myself. I know that classical theater is where my heart is and that knowledge makes it easy for me to fantasize about a life working regionally for the next few years at festivals and LORT theaters while I am still young and my life is flexible. But I have always left room for the option of grad school. I grew up in the Ivy League atmosphere of Cornell, where my dad is a professor and there is something in me that has always seen higher education as part of my destiny. But I think it is too soon to make any firm decisions right now. That is what this year is partly about; discovering the skills I want to nurture to sustain me throughout my career. So, Grad School, Regional Theater, see the world, that could all be there for me in two years.

5 Any words of wisdom? (auditioning for fellows position...Michael Kahn)

MS: Words of Wisdom? "To Thine own self be true?" "Fit the action to the word, the word to the action?" I guess those might be some I heard somewhere. And as far as auditioning goes, I think the same words apply. You can't go wrong if you simply breathe and let the truth of your own experience guide you and fill your words with life.

Matt Stucky's website -

Tune in next week for Maria Kelly's interview. This afternoon she went on for Samantha Soule in An Enemy of the People.