Actress Angelica Alejandro stops by on Close-Up Culture to talk about her role in God Of Carnage.
The play is about a playground altercation between eleven-year-old-boys which brings together two sets of Brooklyn parents for a meeting to resolve the matter. At first diplomatic niceties are observed, but as the meeting progresses, and the rum flows, tensions emerge and the gloves come off, leaving the couples with more than just their liberal principles in tatters.
For ticket info: Mirvish.com: God of Carnage
Hi Angelica, what excited you about this opportunity to star in God Of Carnage?
How long do we have? I keep adding to that list of why I love playing Annette and why I am so thrilled for this opportunity. I am so lucky that I am part of a great cast and production bringing this to Toronto audiences. I am Toronto based and we have such an amazing and talented creative community here. Toronto has so much talent, so many people who are so passionate and inspiring.
Having this opportunity to take on the role of Annette, collaborate with some of these great people and share her with everyone is really exciting. With it being here in my hometown, it will be wonderful to share this with my family and friends, they truly have been the wind in my sails and given me the encouragement and strength to spread my wings and soar towards my dreams.
You play the role of Annette, who was originally brought to Broadway by actress Hope Davis. What has it been like stepping into a character that has been played by so many iconic actors?
God of Carnage has won both a Tony Award for Best Play as well as a Laurence Olivier Award for Best Comedy. Like you mentioned, this role was originally brought to Broadway by Hope Davis with other iconic actors like Annie Potts, Lucy Liu and Kate Winslet also having portrayed this character. You are exactly right, they are iconic!! Those are people I love watching so it is intimidating given that history of Annette.
I was on cloud nine when I found out I was going to have the opportunity to play her. I am still so giddy and it grows each day I get to step into this same role. I can’t wait for audiences to experience our cast bringing the story to life. It still feels like a dream sometimes. It really is an honour to be able to bring her to audiences.
What was your approach to the role of Annette?
Knowing the people that have played her was something I was very cognisant of, playing Annette are big shoes to fill. You have your thoughts on how you are going to approach and prepare for the character. However in the end this is something as a cast and production we are bringing together to audiences. When we as a cast and production come together, we are all collaborating together with our director, to bring our version of each character and the story to life. Though the story and characters are known, we are sharing with audiences something that is unique to our production and vision.
What can audiences expect from this production?
We refer to it as “A Comedy of Manners without the Manners”. Parents come together to discuss an incident at school between their two children. What audiences will experience is seeing how when adults try to be mature, that quickly the veneer of civility can disappear resulting in adults letting loose and becoming children themselves. In short what audiences can expect is to see the good, the bad, the ugly and comically awkward.
What are your first memories of falling in love with acting and performing?
Ever since I was younger, being an only child I would get lost in stories, both on print and on-screen. I didn’t have siblings but what I had was my imagination. Well my imagination and a very encouraging dad who loved films and television shows. To give you an idea of how much, our family dubbed my dad’s collection “better than a video store”. He had so many that he enjoyed and I grew up watching them with him. His favourites, he would know the dialogue by heart.
Over time I knew it too, so that when we would watch together, we would take turns voicing the different characters. That’s it, I was hooked. I was in awe of how those stories, people and places made me feel and affected me. The first time I performed in front of people, it was both thrilling and scary. I remember seeing people’s faces and seeing their reactions. You could not wipe the smile from my face – I loved being up there in front of everyone, performing and connecting with them.
How do you like to spend your time away from the stage and the camera?
I love to cook and go to yoga. However when I am not on stage or in front of the camera, I tend to still be involved somehow in the industry. I also get asked to be a juror, judge, panellist, speaker and host for different film festivals or industry events and initiatives. I am so grateful for all of it and can’t believe I am so lucky to get to do this!
What are your hopes and ambitions for the future?
I would like to keep performing, continuing to grow as a performer, challenging and pushing myself. I recently became a Member of Fight Directors Canada, so the various disciplines involved are something I want to keep growing in. I want to stay active in my community and within my unions for my fellow performers, which come from my dad who instilled in me to give back and be of service to be there helping others.
Lastly, I would like to continue to explore ways to create opportunities for others. I have had such a wonderful journey as a performer and in part it is due to so many giving me a chance, I would like to do that for others.
Photos by Wayne McDonald Photography
For ticket info: Mirvish.com: God of Carnage
Follow Angelica on Instagram: @liveloveactangel