In part four of a series of interviews with the cast of Loves and Hours, meet Taylor Duvall.
Please introduce yourself and tell our readers where they may have seen you perform on the stage before. What roles did you play in these shows?
My name is Taylor Duvall and I’ve been in a few past productions at Laurel Mill Playhouse. Previous roles included the Lamb in Charlotte’s Web, Charlotte Lucas in Pride and Prejudice, and Mary Abbott in Happy Hollandaise. Prior to my roles at Laurel Mill Playhouse, I hadn’t performed in shows since high school.
Why did you want to be part of the cast of Loves and Hours? I have never heard of this play before. Had you known about it before? And what intrigued you about the play?
I wanted to be a part of Loves and Hours because I can relate to my character and also because I really liked the plot. I think it’s an incredibly funny show and our cast is absolutely amazing. I’m very excited for opening.
Who do you play in the show? How do you relate to him or her? What traits do you share? Does this character remind you of a similar character that you have played before?
I play Rebecca Tinley, Dan Tinley’s daughter. I really relate to Rebecca based on the fact that she’s also a child of divorce and she’s a bit upset about it. She’s incredibly Type-A, which is also very much like me. However, the way I deal with being upset and the way Rebecca deals are very different. She’s incredibly upset about her parents’ divorce and is upset with them both about it. I’ve never played a character like Rebecca and I’m incredibly excited to explore being her.
What is Loves and Hours about from the point of view of your character?
Rebecca isn’t in the show too much during the first act, besides establishing the fact that she’s in medical school at UCLA and she has a very strained relationship with her mother. Later on, we find out that Rebecca has been hiding a secret of her own, and she isn’t quite thrilled about her father dating someone who’s a year younger than her.
What challenges have you had preparing for the role, and how did Director Daniel Douek help you through these challenges? What was the best advice he gave you on how to play your role?
Daniel is incredibly hands-on as a director for every aspect. One challenge I had in preparing for the role is I wasn’t quite sure what Rebecca would portray herself as. Developing a character who is making strides in being more emotional was definitely a challenge, but Daniel gave great critiques and direction in our blocking to better emphasize how Rebecca develops throughout the show.
What is your favorite line or lines that your character says, and what is your favorite line that someone else says in the show?
One of my favorite lines from Rebecca is “Daddy, I’m involved with an older man. Dad, did you hear me? Daddy…” because I absolutely love the reaction that Alan (Dan Tinley) gives to that line. It’s an incredibly funny scene to me in that her father really sees his situation from the other angle. My absolute favorite line in the whole show though would have to be Andrea’s (Juliet Beach) monologue in Act 2. The way Juliet has played around with it is very different from how I would do the monologue and I love how she’s developed the character. That scene is incredibly charged and while it’s somewhat funny, it also makes the audience incredibly sad for Harold.
What does Loves and Hours have to say to today’s audiences?
I think that the main message of Loves and Hours can come down to one of Dan Tinley’s lines to Rebecca, “It’s about the love.” Loves and Hours really sends home the message that you should open yourself up to love, regardless of age differences, gender, or circumstances. Linda ends up accepting herself after being married to Dan for years, Rebecca accepts that she’s in love with someone who she has a ton in common with despite an age difference, Dan lets himself explore a completely different person and Harold realizes that maybe attraction isn’t everything. It has a bit of something for everyone to acknowledge in their life as an audience member; everyone falls in love at some point in their life, everyone has a breakup, and sometimes, who you fall in love with isn’t quite who you expect.
If you could change what happens to your character – what would you like to see happening to your character at the end of the play?
Rebecca’s a bit complex as it is, especially since you don’t see much of what happens to her offstage since she’s too busy helping sick children. I’d love to have a few more scenes in Act I where you really see what happens with her relationships outside of her father. I’d also love to see her interact more with Dan Jr. (Gage Warren) as I feel that relationship is something that goes a bit unexplored.
Why should local theatergoers come and see Loves and Hours?
Loves and Hours has something for everyone. Everyone at some point has experienced love, heartbreak, and maybe falling for someone who doesn’t quite fit into “your type.” It’s a funny show but there are a few moments where it will also tug at your heartstrings.
What’s next for you on the stage?
After Loves and Hours wraps, I’ll be focusing on my regular 9-5 job for a bit as one of our travel seasons is coming up. Time will tell when I’ll be returning to the stage. Definitely one of my favorite things to do and I doubt I’ll be able to stay out of the stage lights for too long.
Running Time: Two hours and 30 minutes, with one intermission.
Review: Loves and Hours at Laurel Mill Playhouse by Ilene Chalmers.
Interview: Meet the Cast of ‘Loves and Hours at Laurel Mill Playhouse Part 1: Alan Barnett.
Interview: Meet the Cast of ‘Loves and Hours’ at Laurel Mill Playhouse. Part 2: Terri Laurino.
Interview: Meet the Cast of ‘Loves and Hours’ at Laurel Mill Playhouse. Part 3: John Dignam.