Monday, July 8, 2013

Spotlight On...Michael Lorz

Name: Michael Lorz

Hometown: Joliet, IL -- Home of Anthony Rapp and John Barrowman and the prison that the Blues Brothers escaped.

Education: BFA Theatre from NYU - CAP21

Select Credits: Swiss Family Robinson (Ernst, NYMF); Gross Indecency (Frank Harris/Charles Parker, Gayfest NYC - The Abingdon); Hello Again (The Young Thing, NYU-CAP21); Marat Sade: A Rock Opera (NYU-Tisch); See What I Wanna See (Janitor/Priest, NYU-Tisch)

Why theater?: I was in 4th grade when I looked at my mom and said, "What if I'm an actor when I grow up?"  She smiled at me and said, "Okay!"  Years later, I attended the Interlochen Arts Academy summer camp, which truly solidified my aspiration to make a future out of theatre.  I find that the collaborative nature of theatre as an art form to be more successful in reaching people than nearly any other art form.  Engaging with other people is the only reason I am an artist and I think theatre has such tremendous capability to do that.

Tell us about Swiss Family Robinson: This wonderful homage to the Gilbert & Sullivan-era of musical theatre has been such a tremendous joy.  In particular, John Kennedy's score is attention-worthy to say the least.  Composed nearly 30 years ago, much of this music was nearly put to rest until John picked it back up again--and thank freakin' goodness he did.  As Ernst, the youngest brother, I get to be a big ole' nerd.  I'm ALWAYS happy to be the comic relief and I can't wait to bring this story to an audience, I think it's going to be a great show.

What is it like being a part of Swiss Family Robinson?: Working with this cast and creative team has never stopped being a fun process.  This kind of theatre in particular is all about giving audiences a good time, and I don't think that will be a problem considering the fantastic time we have all been having on stage with each other. 

What kind of theater speaks to you? What or who inspires you as an artist?: Anything that gets an audience thinking.  There are so many ways to go about doing that, but I find intimate spaces to be particularly conducive to engaging an audience.  I am also always looking for a perfect blend of craftsmanship and creativity, which I think you can find in artists like Salvador DalĂ­, much of Sondheim, Michael John LaChiusa, and many more that I'm forgetting at the moment.  Mastery of the form of the art your producing is something incredibly impressive, but is simply a skill that one is executing until it is paired with creative genius--that's when I think great art is being made.

Any roles you’re dying to play?:
I just wanna be in Book of Mormon so badly...  I'd also love to play Ernst (ironically) in Spring Awakening, Jack in Into the Woods, Bat Boy in Bat Boy, Toby in Sweeney Todd, and one day, when I'm a big boy, I need to be Bobby in Company.

What’s your favorite showtune?: This one is really difficult, but I'm going to go with "Being Alive" from Company.

If you could work with anyone you’ve yet to work with, who would it be?:
Stephen Sondheim, hands down.

Who would play you in a movie about yourself and what would it be called?: Am I even old enough to have a movie about myself yet?  Hmm... It would probably be that little boy who played Gavroche in the "Les Miserables" movie (who is rumored to be stealing the role of Jack away from me in the upcoming Into the Woods movie.  Not that I got to audition... but... still.)  When I grow up in the movie, I would love someone like John Cameron Mitchell or even a younger Michael Pitt to play me.  How flattering.  As of now, the movie would be called "The Young Thing."

What show have you recommended to your friends?:
Matilda.  Go see it.  I loved it.

What’s your biggest guilty pleasure?: Oof.... it's Taco Bell.  I'm so sorry, I just love that grade D meat.  I'm also a huge fan of that miserable, overplayed pop/dance music.

What’s up next?: Auditioning, of course--what else?  Feel free to youtube and google me!  I'm sure you'll run into interesting things.