Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Spotlight On...Nannette Deasy

Name: Nannette Deasy

Hometown: Chatham Township, NJ

Education: Columbia College, Columbia University / BA, English

Select Credits: Currently the Artistic Director of IRTE, the Improvisational Repertory Theatre Ensemble (official selection Portland Improv Fest, New Orleans Comedy Arts Fest, Unscripted New York 2013 & 2014, Del Close Marathons 15 & 16, Tampa Improv Festival, NYC Improv Festival 2014, Boston Comedy Arts Festival 2014 and Philadelphia Improv Festival 2014).  She has also performed at The Public Theatre, LaMama Etc., Ensemble Studio Theatre, and New York Theatre Workshop.  She has been a cast member of numerous comedy groups and theatres, including Gotham City Improv and Double D.

Why theater?: I couldn't imagine my life without it. It makes me happy. I love theatre and comedy and believe that through the performing arts we can be more in tune with who we truly are and connect with others on a more meaningful level... Plus, it's soooo much fun!

Who do you play in Wow Wee! Adventures of a Little Girl Robot?: I play ANDIE, the Android. She's a "Little Girl Robot" - not too dissimilar to Vicki the Robot from the 80s sitcom classic, "Small Wonder". ANDIE stands for "Artificial Naturalistic Digital Intelligence Entity."

Tell us about Wow Wee! Adventures of a Little Girl Robot: It's a completely improvised, live 80s-style sitcom. Following is our promo blurb: "Wow wee! That little girl's a... ROBOT!!!"
Can an adorable mechanical moppet fit in with the Trumans, a normal, wholesome, suburban family? Or will she be dismantled in a lab? You decide! Follow the HILARIOUS adventures of Andie the Android in this classic (and completely improvised) 80s sitcom!"We have a few set characters - The Truman Family and, of course, Andie the Android. We'll ask the audience for a few suggestions - who the main character of the episode will be (it's not always Andie!) and what he or she wants. From there, we will follow the basic structure of a typical 80s sitcom, complete with commercials, sub-plots and nosey neighbors. We'll even have musical guests make an appearance. The Musical Guest break is a standard element of all IRTE shows. We have been very lucky to be able to feature some great up and coming Indie artists from the NYC music scene at each performance.

What is it like being a part of IRTE?: It's been a blast! IRTE stands for Improvisational Repertory Theatre Ensemble and that is exactly what we've been developing. Our Mission is to create a tight ensemble of performers who work collaboratively to develop, produce and perform original themed, theatrically-staged, and character-driven improvisational shows, following the basic model of seasonal repertory theatre. We want to bring together the best elements of both theatrical mediums - the creativity, humor and spontaneity of live comedy improvisation; and the traditions, values and professionalism of American repertory theatre. Together, we are working on creating a professional improvisational theatre, progressing beyond the standard "student"  productions regularly offered by improvisational training programs. It's very exciting!

What kind of theater speaks to you? What or who inspires you as an artist?: As have countless of my contemporaries, I grew up watching the "Carol Burnett Show" and fantasizing about being just like her. Her huge character work and the "anything-can-happen" energy from filming live in front of an audience was mesmerizing to me as a kid. Today, I also love a lot of non-realistic, raw aesthetic theatre. I recently saw Nevermore: the Imaginary Life and Death of Edgar Allan Poe at New World Stages. I loved its look - a dark, ghoulish feel with over-the-top bricolage costuming and clown-like performances.

Any roles you’re dying to play?: Hmm.. I'd have to think about that a bit more. If there are, I could just make them up in an improvised show, couldn't I?

What’s your favorite showtune?: Just one? Um, “Not a Day Goes By” by Stephen Sondheim. Such a lovely song.

If you could work with anyone you’ve yet to work with, who would it be?: Carol Burnett... or Tim Heidecker and Eric Wareheim. Oh, you just said one, didn't you..? Hmmm...I'd also love to be on "The Walking Dead". Who wouldn't?

Who would play you in a movie about yourself and what would it be called?: Rowan Atkinson in a wig. The movie would be called "Summertime and the Living is Deasy"

If you could go back in time and see any play or musical you missed, what would it be?: Just one? Follies with Elaine Stritch

What show have you recommended to your friends?: Anything by IRTE.- I'm very self-centered. Just kidding. I love any time Scott Adsit or Susan Messing comes to town and performs improv. I also really liked The Last Ship. It didn't get very strong reviews, but I thought it was great.  I also recommend anything by the Ivy Theatre. They're producing some really good stuff lately.

What’s your biggest guilty pleasure?: Chipotle. That stuff is DELICIOUS!

What’s up next?: IRTE's next show is Adrift.