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Passing the Bechdel Test

McHugh: I remember seeing your resume when you submitted to audition and being really impressed with your experience. Share some of your favorites?


Warren: Yes! I've had the privilege of performing with many different companies. Some of my favorites have included Kate Monster in Avenue Q with the Haylofters, the Baker's Wife in Into the Woods with Lakeside Players as well as Townsquare Players, Olive in the 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee with PM&L, and the Killer Queen in We Will Rock You with the Haylofters.




McHugh: Which means that you must also be a stellar vocalist! Those are some difficult musical theater roles. So, when did you know you wanted to be an actor?


Warren: My very first role was in a Halloween school play when I was about 7 years old, and I have never stopped!  I minored in Theatre Arts in college, and toured full time for 3.5 years with a repertory company after college.  I am almost always in a production or eyeing the auditions for the next one!


McHugh: Pursuing a career as an actor is tough. Do you work primarily as a performer or do you have a ‘day job’?


Warren: Yes it is. But I'm lucky to have a day job that I love. I work as the curriculum manager for an after school education company.  We offer after school classes in Drama, Art, STEAM, Coding and Chess at about 400 schools around the country, and I get to write the lesson plans!  I'm grateful for a job that gives me all the time I need in the evenings and on the weekends for my first love, theater.


McHugh: As you know from reading Jocelyn's interview, my favorite part of the actors resume are the ‘additional skills’ listed at the bottom. What are yours? 

 

Warren: I love to work with kids and animals, the thing W.C. Fields said you should never do!  I can also juggle, and I can even eat an apple while I'm juggling.  Shockingly, I've never had the chance to do that onstage.



McHugh: Challenge accepted. Following one of the performances, I will ask you to juggle, eat an apple and sing. Just kidding. Or not. Moving on...This is your first time auditioning for PPTC. What drew you to our production of ART?


Warren: I saw the audition notice on Facebook, with the graphic that was reminiscent of one of my favorite scenes from Ferris Bueller's Day Off, and took a closer look.  I was so excited about the gender swap, because I try to choose productions that pass the Bechdel test whenever possible when I can help it!


McHugh: Bechdel--as in Alison Bechdel? The musical Fun Home, based on her autobiographical graphic novel contains one of my favorite songs! Now I'll have to google 'Bechdel Test'.


From Wikipedia: The Bechdel test is a test to measure the representation of women in film and other fiction. The test asks whether a work features at least two female characters who have a conversation about something other than a man.


McHugh: Yes! Now I'm going to apply the Bechdel test to everything I read, watch and listen to...So, have there been challenges with the script due to shifting the characters from men to women?


Warren: As we fill in our characters as performers, their gender is only one small part of what defines them.  While messy, complicated, and unlikeable women aren't presented in fictional works nearly as often as messy, complicated and unlikeable men are, we all know them, love them, can relate to them. I believe that we can't go wrong with playing towards the truth of the character.


McHugh: You play Margot. How is she similar or different to you?


Warren: I am a peacemaker. I'm not necessarily conflict-averse, but I always work towards finding a compromise or peaceable solution when there is conflict.  But it's a lot of fun to lean into Margot's aggressive tendencies!  There's something cathartic about raising your voice in frustration, something I never do in real life.


McHugh: What sort of person is going to love this show?

Warren: Anyone who enjoys deep talks with old friends will appreciate this show.


McHugh: Call someone out by name: who must come see this production?

Warren: I don’t know how to answer this one! I do know my Mom will be first to in line to pick out her seat on opening night. She will never miss an opening.


McHugh: What will the audience be thinking about in the car as they drive home after this show?

Warren: I think people will be contemplating their best friendships, and what makes them secure.


McHugh: Without giving anything away, what’s your favorite line of dialogue?

Warren: The older I get, the more offensive I hope to become!


McHugh: What’s the last thing you do before you step out on stage / the curtain goes up?


Warren: I peek out at the audience if I can do it unobtrusively! I love to know who is out there. So if you know me and you’re coming to see this show, don’t surprise me- tell me when you’re coming! When the lights come up, 3/4 of my brain is in character, but the other 1/4 is experiencing the story freshly through the eyes of the audience. I’d love to know when you are part of it.







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