Monday, November 16, 2015

Spotlight On...Tirosh Schneider

Name: Tirosh Schneider

Hometown: Oak Park, CA

Education: The Tom Todoroff Acting Conservatory, NYU Dramatic Writing

Select Credits: Ellis Island: The Musical (NYC Tour), Hammerkatz NYU (Sketch Comedy) "Living at Home” (Artworks Theat., LA) “Austin’s Dog Bread” (The Groundlings, LA), Miss/Guided (ABC-TV)

Why theater?: I feel theatre is the most immediate, honest human connection one can have - it’s a conversation between the theatre-makers, the audience, the past, and the world around us, searching for truth together in the here and now. By inhabiting a character, by telling a story, by building a full life over the course of two hours, we are able to share emotions we all feel but often can't find a way to express; it is the deepest form of empathy, and when we laugh or cry together, we feel we are not alone. Also, it’s super fun!!!

Who do you play in The King of Chelm?: I play Aaron, a 9-year-old Jewish boy who wants to be a superhero and has a lot to learn about his roots. I relate!

Tell us about The King of Chelm: It’s a delightful, zany, funny and absurd show by the great Boris Zilberman about the Jewish tradition (and particularly the Russian Jewish tradition), and about how we can find the unique, wonderful hero within each of us.

What is it like being a part of The King of Chelm?: It’s a blast! I’m so lucky to be part of this ridiculously talented cast and crew. Gera Sandler, the director, is brilliant and supportive, and while he has a very clear vision of the show, he allows us to be spontaneous and find ourselves within each moment. Every rehearsal is new and exciting and unexpected. Also, as my ancestors are actually from Chelm, this play speaks to me personally.

What kind of theater speaks to you? What or who inspires you as an artist?: I love theatre that is personal, daring, strange, funny, and sets out not to answer questions but to explore them. People like Annie Baker, Tracy Letts, Mel Brooks, Steve Martin, Mark Rylance, Stephen Sondheim, Bernadette Peters, Louie CK - they speak to others in such a uniquely personal, passionate, joyful and intimate way. Also, Shakespeare and Chekhov - those guys are good too.

Any roles you’re dying to play?: George in Our Town, Eugene in Biloxi Blues, Billy in The Goat, Leo Bloom in The Producers, and um… Hamlet.

What’s your favorite showtune?: “Being Alive” from Company

If you could work with anyone you’ve yet to work with, who would it be?: Sam Gold

Who would play you in a movie about yourself and what would it be called?: Me, and it would be called, “I Brought Sweater Vests: The Tirosh Schneider Story.”

If you could go back in time and see any play or musical you missed, what would it be?: The first production of Design for Living starring Lynn Fontanne, Alfred Lunt, and Noel Coward himself!

What show have you recommended to your friends?: Fun Home, John, and The Flick. Sam Gold’s the man.

What’s your biggest guilty pleasure?: Spoonfuls of peanut butter.

What’s up next?: Playing Hero in A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum with The Little Radicals Theatre Company, and I’m doing a show at The PIT with my sketch group Rest in Trees!

For more on Tirosh, visit