You should be excited that you’ll be able to see Manny Rey in What Do We Do About Walter? at The American Theatre of Actors starting November 2nd. I’ve seen him perform there before and you’re in for a treat from him and the rest of the cast. We got to chat with him to find out about his career and about his experience in this piece.
“As an Artist, I look forward to being a part of these performances. It’s when I’m able to be the most creative, vulnerable, and able to give the most of myself. To work alongside other artists and share ideas, to break down a scene, break down a character to then bring it to life on stage, honestly, to me there’s nothing quite like it. It truly brings me Joy.”
Irving Greenfield tends to write compelling plays with interesting characters. “Well, I’m not sure how unique the story may be but it’s certainly unique to me as it’s the first character I play (Ulysses Grass), who is an educator or at the very least, used to be an educator and is now the provost of the college. He is very much a politician. The story of having opposing views among educators allows for a lot of Drama but also many comedic moments. The pettiness of it all reminds us of how the success of one conjures up the ire of others. It will make you think, make you laugh, and connect with these characters. You will have a good time.”
This play is about rivalry in academia. One can’t help but think of the current state of education in this country. Mr. Rey has a unique perspective on the subject. “Short and sweet. Add. Don’t subtract. The old and the new can coexist. That’s it.
This is not Mr. Rey’s first rodeo with The American Theatre of Actors. “I’ve been fortunate to have performed more than 6 plays at ATA under the direction of James Jennings, Ken Coughlin, and Laurie Rae Waugh and to have worked alongside such awesome talent. It’s very humbling. I feel right at home at ATA.”
Mr. Rey is one of many cast members who has more glowing accolades for Laurie Rae Waugh! “What do we do about Walter? would mark my 5th collaboration with director Laurie Rae Waugh at ATA. Previous performances were Waiting for the Don, Banned in Bisbee, The Bare Truth, and this year’s Run the Course. We also both acted in the film “The Watchtower” by the late Steve Silver. It’s always a wonderful experience working with Laurie and her style of directing which allows for a lot of creative flow and freedom. She is Fantastic!”
Mr. Rey is fond Mr. Greenfield’s work having performed in a previous play of his. He was also fond of Mr. Greenfield. “What do We do About Walter? is my 2nd Irving Greenfield play and differs quite a lot from my previous Greenfield play “Banned in Bisbee” which had to do with fictional characters from a series of books coming into real life in protest of the banning of their books in the western town of Bisbee . Greenfield always adds some element of himself to his writing as he does in this play. I was so very lucky to have met him in life. He will be missed.”
Though COVID is still around, the performing arts have returned, and Mr. Rey is enthusiastic about that return. “Post Pandemic Indie Theatre is up and ready to entertain. COVID-19 still exists. Be aware and get vaccinated. Do it for yourself and others who love Indie Theatre.”