Sunday, August 19, 2012

Spotlight On...Tavis Doucette

Name: Tavis Doucette

Natick, MA

Wagner College, BA Theatre Performance

Select Credits: One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest (Scanlon, Synapse Theatre Ensemble); Writing in a Vacuum (Heinrich/Bruce, MCTC); A Midsummer Night's Dream (Lysander, freeFall Theatre Company); 'SWonderful (Male Swing, Maximum Entertainment)

Why theater?: Theater has been a strong passion of mine since High School. However, I didn't know that this was something I wanted to do until I got to college. I discovered that there is no greater feeling than walking onto an open stage with a world of possibilities ahead. Live theater is beyond just the actors and the production. None of it exists without an audience reacting and empathizing.

Tell us about The Girl with Her Hands in the Sand: The Girl WIth Her Hands in the Sand is about an artist named Maggie Lane who has shut herself into her art. The character I am playing is named Klaus Coleman. He is a very egocentric, absurd character who is one of Maggie's closest friends. They are rather different souls in regards to the art world. Maggie is a bit of a hermit and Klaus is the extreme socialite, attempting to bring her into his world of art. On the other hand, her sister, Penny, is attempting to make her get a real job and wake up to reality. Meanwhile, there is Danny, Klaus Coleman's assistant, who wants her to find her happiness in a happy medium. So we have one character being torn in three directions. It is a very funny play that touches upon some great topics. What is the purpose of art? To make money? The hobby? The life? And how does an artist deal with the world and their own happiness.

What is it like being a part of The Girl with Her Hands in the Sand?: It has been a very creative process. This is the first time the play has been done and it's great to be working with the writer, Jon Galvez firsthand. Our director, Michael Hagins, has been very supportive in letting us explore this new text. Additionally, our producers, Theatrical Gems, has been incredibly supportive in the journey. Jon Galvez, Jacob Shoesmith-Fox (founder of Theatrical Gems), and I all went to Wagner College together so it was great to work with them.

What kind of theater speaks to you? What or who inspires you as an artist?: I believe that all theater has a place in the artistic community. Recently I have begun getting into comedy. Comedy is commonly overlooked, and not considered intelligent or thoughtful. But comedy can make us think about something in a different way, and laugh about it. An actor who is inspiring me lately is Jeff Daniels. I've been crazy about HBO's "The Newsroom". The man can do it all, comedy or drama, because he understands that at the root, they are the same. It's just people (characters) trying to achieve objectives, and doing whatever they can to succeed. That is what makes a piece interesting. People trying to reach a goal, and how they try to do it.

Any roles you’re dying to play?:
I would love to play some classic characters in American theater. Like Brick in Cat on a Hot Tin Roof or Pale in Burn This. I really like playing classic strong male characters. Especially the troubled types.

What’s your favorite show tune?: Well, I wouldn't consider these show tunes... but Sunday in the Park with George and A Little Night Music are two of my favorites. They are musical and literary masterpieces.

If you could work with anyone you’ve yet to work with, who would it be?: I would love to work with Patrick Stewart. He's a legend and he still understands that it's all about being a player, and playing. That's why we do it. He did a Funny or Die short for the Olympics and it shows a completely different side of him.

Who would play you in a movie about yourself and what would it be called?:
Wow.. thats tough.. I honestly have no idea. Maybe Mark Ruffalo? It would probably be called What do you mean skirts and Dresses are different?

What show have you recommended to your friends?: I haven't been able to see anything recently.  But I usually recommend things at Second Stage or Atlantic Theater Company. I appreciate the work they do.

What’s your biggest guilty pleasure?: I hate to say it, but the "Jersey Shore". One day on tour we had a day off in Aiken, South Carolina. There was a marathon on TV and I spent all day watching it. Got hooked. I know it's absurd, but sometimes we need some mindless entertainment.

What’s up next?: Next? I guess we'll see. I have been considering going back to school and getting my MFA in Acting. But the road is undetermined. To reference one of my favorite books: Ka.