LA: Where are you originally from?
BM: My wife and I moved here in 1986 from Chicago.
LA: Why did this particular play interest you?
BM: I was really intrigued with the character of Walter Flood and his transformation. I also really like working with Bob Neu. I have heard great things about Lyric Arts but had never seen a show or worked with them.
LA: For those that are unfamiliar with Becky’s New Car can you tell us about the show?
BM: On the surface it is a fast paced show about a mid-life crisis that takes some unpredictable turns. Beneath that surface the show asks many thought-provoking questions about how we choose to live our lives. Oh, and it is very funny!
LA: Talk about the character that you play in Becky’s New Car How have you developed this character?
BM: I play Walter Flood. He is a widower who has spent his life running a large business while his wife raised the family and ran the home. He is exposed to the everyday aspects of life that reveal his vulnerability. Walter has the opportunity to reveal himself for what he wished the rest of his life to look like. It is a journey that is both exhilarating and frightening; as a recently retired executive I have a sense of what he is going through.
LA: Talk about your fellow cast. How do you see their characters developing? Any that you are particularly amazed at?
BM: This is a very talented cast. I find myself amazed every night at rehearsal. Bob (director) has created an environment where we have permission to stretch the boundaries of our own character as well as our defined relationships with the other characters. He has his own ideas about what he is looking for but is very respectful of the process we the actors need to go through to get there.
I believe the end result will be an extremely diverse collection of personalities which is how the script reads. The cool thing is that everybody has their “Aha” moment when their character gets to reveal a big chunk of what is missing in their life.
LA: What are some of the most impressive elements of Becky’s New Car?
BM: I really love the way the show happens on one stage and yet has four distinct sets. All of this is accomplished with lighting, movement and dialogue. Very fun.
LA: Why should people come and take a chance and see Becky’s New Car
BM: It is rare to see a show that is such a small cast and also has the elements of comedy and drama. The audience will very much help create how this show changes from night to night. There is an element of interaction mixed with traditional presentational theater. I believe the ultimate effect will be quite intimate.
LA: What is your New Year resolution?
BM: The easy answer is to lose 15 pounds! I just set up the treadmill, so here we go…
Seriously, my big goal for 2013 is to continue to stretch myself to play more dynamic characters like Walter. My background is in opera and music theater so I’d like to continue rounding out my straight theater resume.
LA: Sum up Becky’s New Car in 3 words?
BM: Thought-provoking, poignant and FUNNY!
LA: Please tell us a little bit about yourself?
BM: I am married to my wife Margaret; we have three daughters, Angela, Kate and Sadie, and three grand children, Olivia, Sherif and Hannah. I recently retired after 32 years in the printing industry as a sales executive. I have done quite a lot of concert singing over the years as a featured soloist and chorister here in the Twin Cities. Up til now, my work schedule didn’t allow me to commit to a rehearsal schedule for theater. I am making up for lost time, performing in nine shows in the past four years.
I am thrilled to be on the Lyric Arts stage in this show and hope it is the first of many!