Here is the second interview with the extraordinary cast of Round House Theatre’s Ordinary Days. In Part 3: Meet Erin Weaver.
Joel: Where have local theatregoers seen you perform this year?
Erin: I started out the year playing Juliet in Romeo and Juliet at the Folger Theater, then Kattrin in Mother Courage and Her Children at Arena Stage.
Why did you want to be part of this cast of Ordinary Days? Had you seen the show before you were cast in this production?
At first it was simply the opportunity to work with Matt Gardiner again! Then, as I listened to the music and got to know the show I became very moved by each character’s story and was especially excited to tell Deb’s story (the character that I am playing). While, on the surface, Deb and I aren’t too much alike, we do share many similarities and I am always grateful to have the chance to grow and learn with/from the character I am playing. Finally, being in another musical always scares me… but I want to keep pushing myself in the musical theater world.
How would you describe Adam Gwon’s score and how would you describe an Adam Gwon song?
Well, let me put it this way… when people ask what I’m working on, I often accidentally say, “”I’m in a play called Ordinary Days”… I forget myself sometimes that this is a musical because each song that I sing feels very conversational. I don’t mean to take away from the incredible musicality of this show-it’s just that I don’t read music or speak that language very well, so it’s hard for me to describe Adam’s songs in musical terms. All I know is I find singing and listening to these songs very satisfying. Every note and word seems true and honest. Nothing is there that doesn’t need to be there. His score reminds me of his characters Deb and Warren: a wonderful mix of common sense and surprising beauty.
Introduce us to the character you play in the show. What do you admire about her and how is your character like you? How do you relate to her?
Honestly, I feel like Adam does such a great job of introducing the characters to the audience in the show and it’s hard to answer the rest of these questions without giving too much away… So *warning* the latter half of the answer to this question might be a bit of a spoiler. My characters name is Deb and I admire her drive… I love how funny she is and how she uses humor and sarcasm to get through stressful situations. Mostly, though, (SPOILER ALERT) I appreciate how she is eventually open to change. I struggle with this myself- I think lot’s of people do- and it’s my life long goal to always want to be better. A better person, wife, mother, sister, daughter, actress, teacher… just better. But the only way we get better, really, is by being open to what people are saying to you, either directly or indirectly. People aren’t always right, but I hope to stay open and ready to receive criticism and to change for the better. I LOVE that Deb, someone so clearly stuck in her ways and her beliefs, allows someone to change her perspective on life. It inspires me to do the same.
What song or songs were the most challenging for you to learn and how did Director Matthew Gardiner and Musical Director William Yanesh help you with these challenges? What is the best advice they gave you when you were preparing for your role?
One might predict that the hardest one for me to learn was the song called “Calm” because it’s very fast with A LOT of words, but that song was a lot of fun to learn and block and Bill (William Yanesh) was a great help to me as well. The one I struggled with the most was the first song, “I Don’t Wanna Be Here.” This is the song where my character introduces herself to the audience so there was/is a lot of pressure to make sure I get the audience on my team right away. But this was a challenge because while Deb is very funny she is also complaining about her life and all of the road blocks she has encountered so far. She comments a number of times through out the song that she is not a negative person, but I think the audience can see that she kind of is:) Matt Gardiner worked very hard with me to make sure i walked a fine line of letting the audience get know Deb and her flaws while also keeping them on her team and finding her likable regardless of those flaws.
Adam Gwon visited you during rehearsals and saw a performance. What did he say to you after the show? Did he offer any advice or suggestions? Have you ever worked with him before or sung his songs before in your performances?
I have never worked with Adam or his music before, so I’m very grateful for this opportunity and thrilled that we got to meet him and that he saw this production!! I have never been more nervous IN MY LIFE to perform a show, knowing composer/lyricist was out there watching! He was very kind after the show, but I was honestly so nervous that I just said a quick hello and thanked him so much for coming and then ran out of there for fear of making a fool of myself. I hope one day, when I’m not so nervous, to tell him just how fun it is to do this show every night! I think he is a genius!
This is the first musical in 7 years that has been performed at Round House Theatre. What other musicals would you love them to produce and what role would you like to play in them?
Peter Pan!!! I want to play Peter!!!
Why should local theatregoers come to see this ‘extraordinary’ show?
Well, to start, I think this is a very funny, surprisingly moving, accessible musical. I have heard tons of people say “ I really don’t like musicals, but I LOVED this!!” It’s very much like a play- but the text is sung. I also think listening to the voices of Sam Edgerly, Will Gartshore, and Janine Davita with Bill Yanesh on piano is worth the price of admission!
An Extraordinary Cast of ‘Ordinary Days’ at Round House Theatre: Meet Will Gartshore.
An Extraordinary Cast of ‘Ordinary Days’ at Round House Theatre: Meet Janine DiVita.
Review of Ordinary Days by David Friscic on DCMetroTheaterArts.
Read other local reviews of Ordinary Days in “Other Reviews.’