Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Spotlight On...Ryan Farnsworth

Name: Ryan Farnsworth

Hometown: Dunsmuir, CA

Education: BFA in Musical Theatre, Honors in Acting, Honors in Musical Theatre, UC Irvine

Select Credits: Candide (Candide), Godspell (Jesus), Grease (Danny Zuko), Midsummer (Puck)

Why theater?: Everyone pretended to be someone else when they were younger.  I remember my cousin and I playing Tom Sawyer and Huck Finn every summer, building rafts and catching crawdads, or playing Cowboys and Indians on the trails surrounding my home town.  I still get to do stuff like that because I have a degree in Make-Believe.

Who do you play in Zombie Strippers?: I play the less than genteel boyfriend of the only remaining non-zombie stripper.  I'm a bouncer who goes by the name "Playya" - I think I am a thug, but all I really do is talk like a rapper and desert my girlfriend in all the moments she needs me most.  If you were to draw a cartoon of a douche, it would be my character.

Tell us about Zombie Strippers: ZS is basically an adult version of "Scoobie Doo".  Five kids are in a graveyard in the middle of the night being chased around by monsters.  Except there is no dog, and the monsters are hot.  We've got great dancers, and a really fun pop/dance score, and the show is short and sweet.  It's definitely worth coming to see.

What is it like being a part of Zombie Strippers?: It's awesome.  I love having the opportunity to workshop new work, especially if the writers are part of the process.  You can create something together, which I think makes you attach more to what it is you are doing.  If I can't be creative, I don't know what I'm doing.

What kind of theater speaks to you? What or who inspires you as an artist?: I look for media of all kinds (theatre, television, film, music) to be well written and interesting.  I have a group of friends that do Shakespeare in bars, and it's freaking amazing.  There is such a need for entertainment right now, and people are finding creative outlets everywhere.  Sure, watching action movies in IMAX is awesome to do, but I find the really artistic stuff is the stuff that gets my creative juices going.  

Any roles you’re dying to play?: Clyde (Bonnie and Clyde), Drew (Rock of Ages), Jack (Newsies), I mean I could do this forever just in musical theatre.  My true dream role is something I can originate.  Like I said, being a part of that creative process is where I feel the best.

What’s your favorite showtune?: "Daybreak" from Floyd Collins by Adam Guettel.  That show is by far my favorite show.  I grew up in the mountains, so Folk Music is my jam.

If you could work with anyone you’ve yet to work with, who would it be?:
Anyone?  Robin Williams.  Heck, I would just like to have LUNCH with the guy.  I do a lot of accents and impressions, so between us we could probably be the most entertaining lunch guests that particular restaurant had ever seen.  Or terrorizing I suppose.

Who would play you in a movie about yourself and what would it be called?: Oh geez, I don't know.  Probably someone like Zac Efron, and it would be called something silly and stupid like "Carpe Female" 

What show have you recommended to your friends?: I think Gentleman's Guide is terrific. 

What’s the most played song on your iTunes?: Right now I never skip "Serious" by Duran Duran, but I also never skip anything by Sara Bareilles, The Civil Wars, or anything Chris Thile is remotely involved with (you want to talk about artistic genius?)

What’s your biggest guilty pleasure?: When I was younger I watched a lot of Anime.  And gosh darn it, I still watch it from time to time.  The music is pretty good in those shows.

What’s up next?: As of right now I will be heading down to Little Rock to do Arkansas Rep's production of Memphis where I will be understudying Huey.  I'm stoked.  I hope to come back to NYC with a killer tan.