Monday, October 12, 2015
Spotlight On...Michael Borrelli
Hometown: San Diego, CA
Education: University of Southern California for 2 years and then left to study with Larry Moss at his studio in LA for 3 years and then completed my BFA at Santa Fe University of Art and Design. Also studied with Elizabeth Kemp at The Actors Studio in NYC.
Select Credits: 12 seasons and 19 productions with The Hudson Valley Shakespeare Festival. I had an old world apprenticeship with that company. I was a junior in college when I took a greyhound bus from Santa Fe on my spring break to audition for a spot as an acting intern with the company (one of those insane youth ideas that worked out). When I started with HVSF we performed under a yellow and white striped wedding tent with one port-a-potty and dirt floor dressing tent. I was a part of the company's evolution into a nationally recognized regional theatre with an operating budget of over 2 million. I consider my time with HVSF as my grad school and feel very fortunate to have worked with and have grown alongside such great actors and theatre artists. Other credits include The La Jolla Playhouse, Portland Center Stage, Contemporary American Theatre Festival, The Hangar Theatre in Ithaca, NY. For film and tv credits:
Who do you play in Dracula?: I'm playing Dracula in Dracula.
What is it like being a part of Dracula?: This experience with Three Day Hangover has been exhilarating. Our original director, Lori W. Hudson had her baby one week into rehearsals a month early so Kristin McCarthy Parker stepped in. Both ladies are incredibly skilled directors and the transition was fairly seamless. There is a real sense of play and teamwork in a TDH rehearsal room. We never sat around a table once. We were immediately on our feet discovering, messing around and falling on our faces and getting up and exploring some more. It was clear from the beginning that we were going to take Dietz's original adaptation of Stoker's Dracula (which stays remarkably true to the novel) and figure out how it lives and breathes in the now, 21st century NYC. So....a lot of improvising and some of the most fun stuff came out of rehearsal room mistakes that were some how woven into the action. Even now in performance we are striving for a real ensemble experience where people feel free to discover in the moment and feel connected to each other and the imaginary world of the play.
What kind of theater speaks to you? What or who inspires you as an artist?: I love all forms of theatre and usually can find something inspiring or thought provoking in anything I see. I try to watch plays with the eyes of a kid. I'm not a jaded theatre goer at all. Even in the worst productions I've seen, there were miracles that went into bringing that production to life. I love the alchemy that happens between audience and actor that you can only experience when your are in a live performance. I like high art and poop jokes... Preferably in the same show. I love to go sit in MOMA ... To clear my head.. I also like any art, music, or writing that sheds light on the forgotten underdog... The disenfranchised. All the outcasts.
Any roles you’re dying to play?: I get that question a lot.. And I wish I could answer that. But I never can. All of the parts that I've played that were the most fun and life changing were all complete surprises and not coveted. So, I guess the roles that I've been dying to play have not been written yet. They are out there yet to be discovered.
What is your favorite showtune?: That's easy- "Origins of Love" by John Cameron Mitchell and Steven Trask.. The original off Broadway recording of Hedwig and the Angry Inch. I saw the production my first summer in NYC and it blew my mind.
If you could work with anyone you’ve yet to work with, who would it be?: A tie between Bill Murray and Cate Blanchet
What show have you recommended to your friends?: It just closed but I went to see my friend and fellow HVSF company member Ryan Quinn in A Whorl Inside A Loop at 2nd Stage.. I absolutely loved it.. It had all the elements I loved.. Great storytelling through the eyes and hearts of the disenfranchised.. Prisoners. And my friend Ryan Quinn was brilliant. I hope it moves to Broadway.
What’s your biggest guilty pleasure?: Ok I can't believe I'm going to admit this in print especially since my usual favorite music is 90s grunge, punk and hard rock... But for the last week I've been listening to Katy Perry's song "ROAR" on repeat... A lot. I gets me pumped.
For more on Michael, visit www.michaelborrelli.com