Sunday, July 15, 2012

Cast Interview #2: Brandon Walker as "Richard" in THE LOVER and "Danny" in DANNY...

Welcome to our exciting series of interviews, where you can get to know the cast & creative team in our Summer Series, a double-header of John Patrick Shanley's Danny and the Deep Blue Sea and Harold Pinter's The Lover. The Summer Series is a true repertory event - both shows perform on the same evening with the same cast, creative team, and design concept.

The shows run back to back July 27 - August 12, 2012
Wed-Sat at 7pm;  Sat & Sun at 2pm, in New York City.

To donate (it's a worthy cause!), click here.
For tickets, click here.
For more info about The Seeing Place, click here.

Your Name:
Brandon Walker

Role in this Production:
Richard in The Lover, and Danny in Danny and the Deep Blue Sea.

How long have you been acting?
Since 5th grade - so, like 10? After a hellish 4th grade class play, where I played Abraham Lincoln and actually had to be coddled through by my teacher (yeah, I was THAT kid), freaked out, peed my pants, puked backstage, and all kinds of fun stuff - I moved schools. THEN, I got pneumonia right as the semester started, couldn't do the alternate book report for my humanities unit, and was forced into playing Flavius in our class production of Julius Caesar by my teacher. But then we worked on it the whole year and I loved it, got over myself, and played Fagin in Oliver! the next year (in the school play).  Apparently, it was my destiny. This was at Encanto Elementary - like THE most ghetto school in San Diego. But they had a wonderful GATE (Gifted and Talented Education) Program. Go figure. 

How long have you been in NYC?
March, 2007. I came here, running from a girl. Or that's what I've said for a long time. I was really just running away from a life I destroyed in California. I didn't arrive here as the happiest of campers. But isn't that everyone that moves here? 

Where are you from originally?
San Diego. And I hate Anchorman. Shut up.

What's been your favorite role, to date?
That I've played? Probably Winston in The Credeaux Canvas. But I wouldn't want to do it again. That I've almost played on like six occasions? Warren in This Is Our Youth. But now, I'm too old. So, I guess I'd have to say Danny.

What do you like about being a part of The Seeing Place?
I like being part of a group of people. I can't stand the great loneliness to which many actors seem tethered. I get to do work that inspires me. And I get to inspire others. And I get to be around people that inspire me. And we get to work for ourselves and one another, so that our art goes beyond impressing our audience. It also feeds us. And then that energy feeds back into the community.'s this circle of love. :O)

What's a fun story about an experience you've had (onstage or off) with The Seeing Place?
On opening night of Closer, I totally went up on my lines in the Hotel scene with Alice. I was playing Dan. And the wording is so specific in that part of the scene that I couldn't figure out what word she needed to hear. To be fair, for the first minute of the pause, I thought that SHE had forgotten HER lines. And then I realized it was me.

And while Elyse Fisher (Alice) was freaking out and telling my character to get the hell out for the next four minutes of the pause, I just kept doing what I'd be doing in the situation. So, I was putting my clothes on and getting ready to walk out the door. And as I was putting my jacket on, I realized that my line was, "I love you." And then I said that, almost in a resigned fashion, and we continued from there.

And the funny thing is that nobody noticed. And I learned that day that the scene is about a breakdown between two people. It initially seemed like it's about a fight. But what I didn't understand about the scene is that there's nothing either of them could say to fix the loss of trust. And in the five minutes that we spent silently onstage, that whole relationship made sense to me. And then we kept that (in less time) for the rest of the run. Because it was awesome.

And that's why this work is so wonderful to me. It's about the story and the situation. It's not about doing everything the right way. It's about sharing real life with the audience. 

What's your previous experience with these two plays (THE LOVER and DANNY....)?
I've seen scenes from Danny and the Deep Blue Sea in classes. I saw the 2004 Second Stage production on film a few years back. I've always connected with the beauty in the play...the longing for a life full of the things we hope for and feeling that I don't deserve it. In truth, this is the first play we've done that has been MY dream show. Usually, I get on board with someone else's dream. And The Lover was a last-minute decision, after we'd been turned down for every other two-person play imaginable. I'd skimmed the play a long time ago and had always wanted to work on a Pinter play. His themes fit in our season, and I had an AHA moment at Drama Book Shop and applied for the rights. It just felt right. 

What's been the most challenging thing about preparing for this/these role(s)?
With The Lover, there is NO WRITTEN STORY. AT ALL. So, we have to make it up and hope for the best. And that's not the easiest thing to do - especially when we all have differing opinions about what is going on. With Danny, I'm trying to open up and allow myself to be the animal I am. And even though I'm pretty antisocial, I've still got some social graces that are unbelievably difficult to shed. But that's what the role requires.

What parts of yourself are similar to the character(s)?
Apparently, I'm pretty volatile, but I also have a good heart (which I hide well with defensiveness and sarcasm and all sorts of fun stuff). So, that's good for Danny. And Richard is a firecracker in the, I've got that one down cold. And my girlfriend is laughing at me. But The Lover is a comedy, right? :O)

What excites you about The Summer Series?
I get to act with a scene partner that challenges me for two shows. I've never gotten to do that 100% of the time in even one show before. I mean, it's exciting and all that it's a marathon evening...but I still don't think it's gonna compare to playing Jimmy Porter, in that sense. Or maybe I just jinxed myself. Did I? I guess you'll have to come find out.

For more information about Brandon, stay tuned. There will be a website very soon. In the meantime...Twitter: @OhBrandonWalker

To donate to support this project, please click here.


  1. Well, I'm from San Diego and I love Anchorman. So, there.

  2. Hey cant wait to see you guys. You both rock on stage and off! Ned will be a great addition

    1. Thanks so much, Nick! I look forward to grabbing a bite with you after the shows! :O)


We're so passionate about creating a conversation in our community - thank you for leaving your thoughts!