Name: Joseph Mathers
Hometown: Verona, NJ
Education: BFA Theater from Syracuse University
Select Credits: "12th Night of the Living Dead", "The Vigil, or the Guided Cradle", "Hack!", "Action Philosophers", "Blast Radius", "Lickspittles, Buttonholers and Damned Pernicious Go-Betweens"
Why theater?: It's a "had to be there" art form, and it allows for connection between artists and audience like nothing else I've ever experienced. It makes performing with an ensemble so much better, because everyone wants to tell the best story we can, in that moment, to those people. Also, obviously, for the money.
Who do you play in King Kirby?: I play a selection of roles, but I get to work for the longest time as Joe Simon, co-creator of Captain America. He and Jack Kirby were close friends and partners for a long time until... you know... stuff happened.
Tell us about King Kirby: At its heart, this is really a serious play about a lot of the injustices that took place and honestly are still being debated at the highest levels of the courts - most people have no real idea how bad things got for some of the people who created these beloved characters. This play takes a look at the history of comics in America from a viewpoint that is a little neglected, and is still pretty universal. Any more than a passing familiarity with comics is really pretty unnecessary when seeing King Kirby.
What is it like being a part of King Kirby?: I'll sum it up since I could humble-brag about this team forever. I know the designers pretty well (or least their work) and I really respect all of them. I love the play, I love the writers, I love the director, I love this cast. I love the subject matter. So, yeah - getting to tell this story, in this way at this time is really good for me. There's no weak link about the whole process. Hell, even our rehearsal space is nice.
What kind of theater speaks to you? What or who inspires you as an artist?: Hear me out on this but I like theater that has to be... you know... actual theater. Not a movie. I love movies and TV too, but theater is it's own thing and plays that are theater first and not maybe warm-up screen-plays are my thing. That said, I LOVE theater that does non-traditional theater genres. Science-fiction and horror theater. Not enough good stuff happening here yet, but it's growing, and I mean to be keep playing in it.
Any roles you’re dying to play?: A few - I really want a shot at Laertes someday but I'm not worried. It'll happen sooner or later. In TV/Film Land I kind of hope I'll be around to play Marten Broadcloak in that epic DT translation that will never happen. Everybody wants to be Flagg. I want Marten.
What’s your favorite showtune?: "Oklahoma" because you know what, screw you, it's awesome. It's the most musical showtune musical tune from a show that's musical that ever was. You can't take anything too seriously if you're signing that to yourself. Ever. Period. Suck it.
If you could work with anyone you’ve yet to work with, who would it be?: William Atherton. Obviously. I'll give you a hint, "May I... please... see the containment facility Dr. Venkman."
Who would play you in a movie about yourself and what would it be called?: Apparently Ed Norton, which I get a lot. The movie would be called "Sawdust and Glitter - My Life As a Stagehand"
What show have you recommended to your friends?: Mostly everything Crystal writes and mostly everything Mac Rogers writes.
What’s the most played song on your iTunes?: Oddly, according to my iTunes, A Perfect Circles' cover of "The Nurse Who Loved Me." I think I might have fallen asleep with it on repeat or something because that has like sixty something plays.
What’s your biggest guilty pleasure?: Loving "Lilo and Stitch" as much as I do. C'mon man, a robot pukes in the first 3 minutes of that movie.
What’s up next?: I've been cast as "The Dad" playing opposite my lovely wife in an open ended run going up in November. I'm a little worried about the budget of the show, and the utter lack of rehearsals but honestly, this will be the one that counts.