Saturday, June 28, 2014

Spotlight On...Dan Wolpow

Name: Dan Wolpow

Hometown: Dix Hills, NY (Long Island)

Education: Cornell University

Favorite Credits: Keepers: A Broadway Benefit at Studio 54 and playing the title role in a college production of Bat Boy.

Why theater?: Despite that most theater almost universally disappoints me, it is the only art form capable of sending me into a complete state of euphoria.

Tell us about Cloned: Cloned! is a musical comedy about a young scientist who is trying to build a teleportation machine, and then accidentally and unwittingly clones himself. With two of him running around, things get a bit out of control and it leads to a lot of ridiculous farcical situations.

What inspired you to write Cloned?: My collaborator Adam Spiegel and I were loosely inspired by the central premise of Shakespeare's The Comedy of Errors as well as our love of all things science fiction.

What kind of theater speaks to you? What or who inspires you as an artist?:
Lately I've found myself especially drawn to immersive theater. I caught Third Rail Projects' Then She Fell last December and came away very impressed. I'd like to see how shows like these can develop to better tell compelling narratives. They've got the immersive part down, but the storytelling still has a ways to go. Nothing inspires me more as an artist than seeing less talented people getting their work produced. If they can do it, why can't I?

If you could work with anyone you’ve yet to work with, who would it be?:
Alan Menken.

What show have you recommended to your friends?:
The two shows in recent years that I couldn't stop raving about were Boeing-Boeing and One Man, Two Guvnors. These rank as two of my favorite theatrical experiences of all time.

Who would play you in a movie about yourself and what would it be called?:
Buster Keaton and it would be called "Strange Casting For Several Reasons".

What’s your biggest guilty pleasure?: Downton Abbey. Anybody pretending that it's a sophisticated drama is deluding themselves. It's a hokey, maudlin soap opera, but I love it.

What’s the most played song on your iTunes?: As weird (and ironic) as this sounds, I don't listen to a lot of music. I regularly listen to two podcasts every week: The Giant Bombcast and The Judge John Hodgman Podcast.

If you weren’t working in theater, you would be _____?:
Earning a respectable living.

What’s up next?: Adam and I have a short, original musical about the Jewish holiday Purim that we'd like to expand, possibly for a future concert. Also, more of Cloned!, knock on wood.