Guest Artist "Snapshot" - Troy O'Donnell

September 21, 2016

‘An Inspector Calls’ marks Troy's third appearance at Rosebud Theatre, previously appearing as Mr. Van Daan in ‘The Diary of Anne Frank’ and Father Christmas / Giant Rumblebuffin in ‘The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe’. A founding member and Artistic Associate with the Freewill Shakespeare Festival, Troy has also performed at the Citadel Theatre (‘Julius Caesar’ and ‘Hamlet’), Mayfield Dinner Theatre (‘The 39 Steps’), Concrete Theatre (‘Smokescreen and The Early Bloomer’), Quest Theatre (‘The Umbrella’), Punctuate! Theatre (‘Adult Entertainment’ and ‘The End of Civilization’), Thou Art Here (‘The Falstaff Project’), Workshop West, Shadow Theatre, Theatre Yes, Trunk Theatre, Theatre North West, Northern Light Theatre and Leave It To Jane.

Troy O'Donnell & Glenda Warkentin in An Inspector Calls. Photo by Morris Ertman.

Where do you call home?

Edmonton. Born, raised, studied there.

What’s your “must-have” morning ritual?

A little bit of peace and quiet. No music. No radio chatter. No TV. Nothing.

What’s a particular Rosebud thing you fill your time with when you’re not performing?

I’ve fallen in love with the new giant gazebo. I hang out there at all different times doing all kinds of stuff: reading, eating, listening to music, working.

You’ve worked extensively (and serve on the board) with Edmonton's Freewill Shakespeare Festival. Do you have a favourite play, or a go-to monologue?

Although I’ve been in it eight times and directed it twice, I still find such joy and magic in A Midsummer Night’s Dream. There are a couple of monologues from it that I will jokingly use in real life from time to time. I also have a soft spot for the Chorus speeches in Henry V.

Any dream roles on your bucket list? (Shakespearean or otherwise)

Friar Laurence in Romeo and Juliet. Richard III.

In ‘An Inspector Calls’, you play the patriarch of the Birling family, a man who has worked himself into a position of power, but has sins to atone for. What aspects of the character resonate with you? How do you find common ground?

While there are a lot of aspects to Birling that are unattractive and even, perhaps, nasty… I believe his motivations are pure. It’s just his execution leaves something to be desired at times. Ultimately, he’s trying to do the best for his family and that extends to his business practices. He is fiercely loyal, even in his criticism of them, and always trying to protect them and what he’s built for them. I can understand and appreciate that loyalty and drive.

What's the best acting advice you’ve ever been given?

An instructor at University had a very 'meat and potatoes' approach to acting that has stuck with me. “What do you want? How badly do you want it? Go get it.”

Coffee or Tea, and how do you take it?

On a daily basis: neither. During rehearsals there’s often a pot of coffee on so I’ll drink it mostly because it’s there. I rarely order coffee out unless I’m having the full-on 'greasy spoon' breakfast: eggs, bacon, toast, hashbrowns… a coffee completes it. One cream, one sugar.

What’s currently inspiring you?

Recent theatre school grads not waiting around for the phone to ring but going out and creating their own opportunities.

‘An Inspector Calls’ is a classic mystery with contemporary relevance. Is there a modern mystery you’d like to see resolved?
With the new photos just released, I’d like to know what that really is in Loch Ness. But I also hope no one ever catches anything.

Biggest mystery these days, to me, is how the minds of a great deal of the American electorate are working. I’m at a loss for understanding and words (on a daily basis) as I follow that circus sideshow.

Guest Artist "Snapshot" - Troy O'Donnell

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