In Part Five of a series of interviews with the cast of The Foreigner at Sandy Spring Theatre Group, performing at The Gaithersburg Arts Barn meet Dave Scheele.
Joel: Please introduce yourself and tell our readers where they may have seen you perform before on our local stages.
Dave: I’m Dave Scheele, and here in Maryland you might’ve seen me on the stage at Wootton High School before I graduated, in shows like Fools, Hairspray, and Romeo and Juliet. I’ve also recently performed at the American Shakespeare Center in Staunton, VA.
Why did you want to become a member of the cast of The Foreigner?
I had just moved back from a brief stint in Florida, and I was really looking for some acting opportunities. I really missed being in a show. I love comedy, so this seemed like the perfect match.
Who do you play in the show and how do you relate to this character?
I play Ellard Simms; he’s a younger brother; he’s not that smart, and just trying to help as best he can. I really do relate to Ellard in how he’s underestimated and at times brushed off from a first impression. He tends to fall into just accepting who people tell him he is, but throughout the play I think he really finds his own sense of confidence!
What were some of the challenges you faced while learning your role and how did Director Bruce Hirsch help you with these challenges?
Bruce has been really great to work with, he’s really helped me evoke Ellard’s thinking process on stage. I tend to move a little fast, so he reminds me of how slowly Ellard’s cogs are turning, which has really helped me with my delivery and presence.
What does The Foreigner have to say to today’s audiences?
I think it’s best described in a line from the play, “Nobody is like anybody.” I think a big takeaway from this show is that people can always suprise you, wether you’ve known them for years or only just met. We’re all individuals with different stories and lives that look completely different depending on who’s eyes are seeing it.
Which character is most like you and why and how?
I say this not just because I’m playing him, but definitely Ellard. We both struggle to define ourselves over what other people tell us we are, and we’re both the babies of the show; he’s the youngest of the characters and I of the cast!
What are your favorite lines that you recite and your favorite lines that other characters recite in The Foreigner?
My favorite line has got to be “Sellin’ vegetables. Sometimes people sell vegetables from the backs of those,” because it’s very random and absurd, but in that moment Ellard is confident in it as a possibility, which I find very endearing. My favorite line from another character is “Charlie’s nice! He wouldn’t say nothin’ about bees!” which I’ll give with no context, because it’s just too hilarious of a moment.
Where are you appearing next on the stage after The Foreigner ends its run?
Not sure yet! I’m already starting to line up auditions, so hopefully I’ll be back up soon!
What do you want audiences members to take away with them after seeing you perform in The Foreigner?
I hope they leave knowing that theres no “right” way to be smart. Everyones path to a conclusion is a different lenght and has different obstacles, and we should never tell someone they’re stupid because they learn and process differently from us.
The Foreigner plays from May 13-29, 2016 at Sandy Spring Theatre Group performing at The Gaithersburg Arts Barn – 311 Kent Square Road, in Gaithersburg, MD. For tickets, call the box office at (301) 258-6394, or purchase them online.
Meet The Cast of Sandy Spring Theatre Group’s ‘The Foreigner’ Part 1: Rob Milanich.
Meet the Cast of ‘Sandy Spring Theatre Group’s ‘The Foreigner’ Part 2: Paul Noga.
Meet the Cast of Sandy Spring Theatre Group’s ‘The Foreigner’ Part 3: Marc Rehr.
Meet the Cast of Sandy Spring Theatre Group’s ‘The Foreigner’: Part 4: Becca Sears.
Meet The Cast of Sandy Spring Theatre Group’s ‘The Foreigner’: Part 5: Dave Scheele.