Meet the Cast of Avant Bard’s ‘Friendship Betrayed’ Part 6: Connor J. Hogan

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In Part 6 of a series of interviews with the cast of WSC Avant Bard’s production of Friendship Betrayed—a classic comedy by Spanish playwright María de Zayas y Sotomayor—meet Connor J. Hogan.

Connor J. Hogan
Connor J. Hogan

Joel: Where have local audiences seen you perform recently on stage?

Connor: I’ve performed all over, but Avant Bard has really been my “theatrical home base” for the past four years. Last season, you could have caught me in Absolutely! {perhaps?} at Constellation Theatre, or The Winter’s Tale at HalfMad Theatre. I tend to work a lot in the classics, so if there’s verse in the show, there’s a good chance I am there too.

Why did you want to be part of the cast of Friendship Betrayed at Avant Bard?

Kari Ginsburg and I have worked together as actors multiple times. Besides being great friends, I also think she’s a brilliant and specific artist. When I heard she was directing Friendship Betrayed, I jumped at the opportunity to work with her in a new light, and I’ve been nothing but pleased to have done so.

Who do you play in the show? How do you relate to him?

I play the ever-gregarious Leon. He loves a good story, just like me. He’s the servant to Liseo [James Finley], the Casanova of the story, but is always looking to take his master down a few pegs. Speaking truth to power is another thing I share with Leon.

What’s the show about from the point of view of your character?

People with too much money getting involved in the affairs of other people with too much money. And bootlegging.

Kari Ginsburg, the director, has set Friendship Betrayed in the 1920s. How are you creating a classical character with Roaring Twenties appeal?

I drink a lot (of fake whiskey) in the show.

What is your favorite scene that you are not in and why?

Honestly, everyone is doing great work in their individual scenes so it’s hard to pick. But if I had to pick, it would probably the first Don Juan (Christian R. Gibbs) and Belisa (Alani Kravitz) scene. It’s this sexy courting scene that turns into a fun tango number. Plus both Christian and Alani are great dancers.

What is your favorite line or lines that your character says, and what is your favorite line that someone else says in the show?

Oh, well those are insider secrets. You’ll have to see the show to hear those.

What are you doing next on the stage?

Right now, I don’t have anything on the books, but I’m sure something will pop up.

What do you want audiences to take with them after seeing Friendship Betrayed?

So, we’re all playing games with each other every day, right? There’s something we want from another person, so we use tactics to get that thing. As a society, the rules of those games tend to be predetermined based on your sex, race, gender identity, sexual orientation—a whole host of things. And when we see people operating outside of their preordained group, we tend to get uncomfortable.

In this play, we have two people that each have a host of secret lovers: Fenisa (Melissa Marie Hmelnicky) and Liseo. However, the characters react strongly to Fenisa’s sexual conquests, but shrug off Liseo’s deceptions. But why is that the case? Why is Fenisa demonized, and Liseo rewarded? What I think our production of Friendship Betrayed explores is that double standard that was true in the 17th century, and to a certain extent is still true today.

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Friendship Betrayed plays from September 10 to October 11, 2015 at WSC Avant Bard performing at Gunston Arts Center – Theatre Two – 2700 South Lang Street, in Arlington, VA. For tickets, call the box office at (703) 418-4808, or purchase them online.

LINKS
Meet the Cast of Avant Bard’s ‘Friendship Betrayed’: Part 1: Alani Kravitz.

Meet the Cast of Avant Bard’s ‘Friendship Betrayed’: Part 2: Daven Ralston.

Meet the Cast of Avant Bard’s ‘Friendship Betrayed’: Part 3: James Finley.

Meet the Cast of Avant Bard’s ‘Friendship Betrayed’: Part 4: Melissa Marie Hmelnicky.

Meet the Cast of Avant Bard’s ‘Friendship Betrayed’: Part 5: Zach Roberts.