Friday, April 25, 2014

Nero/Pseudo: Meet John-Michael d’Haviland

(As part of my blogging about Nero/Pseudo here at Balkans via Bohemia, I will be introducing readers to members of the cast and creative team of the show.) 

One of the real pleasures of the Nero/Pseudo process has been getting to know our music director John-Michael d’Haviland. He's got a terrific ear and has worked with the actors closely to get them as a glam as possible before we start our previews.

John-Michael holds a B.A. and an M.A. in Music from George Mason University. Since 2001, he has received twelve WATCH (Washington Area Theater Community Honors) Award nominations for “Outstanding Music Direction.” In 2011, he received a WATCH AWARD for “Outstanding Music Direction” of Rent and again in 2013, for A Little Night Music. Also an active actor and musical theater performer, some of his favorite roles include Coalhouse Walker, Jr., (Ragtime), Noah “Horse” Simmons, (The Full Monty), Jake (Side Show), Eddie Mackrel (The Wild Party, LaChiusa) and Tom Collins (Rent).

John-Michael also has worked at the Keegan Theatre, Arena Stage, and Round House Theater as a musical theater and vocal instructor. He trained at the Goodspeed Opera House in Connecticut.

His answers to the playwright's three questions about the Nero/Pseudo process are succinct but deep. Very much like JM is in the rehearsal room.

Who is your favorite person/god from antiquity?

Haha...random one -- the 100-handed ones, the Hekatonkheires. Been fascinated by those giants, since I was a kid.

What's the strangest fact about the ancient world or glam rock that you've learned from this experience?

How musically diverse glam-rock is and the outrageously awesome fashion that emerged from it.

If you were Emperor for a day, what would be your first decree? 

Teachers and artists would, forever, be paid in the same salary range as professional basketball and football coaches.

Nero/Pseudo previews open at The Shop at Fort Fringe on Friday May 2. Find out more about the play at WSC Avant Bard. Tickets are now on sale

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