The cast of Days Like Today discusses how their characters’ experiences in the musical resonate with their own lives. Hear from 4 members of the cast now and the 3 additional cast members in an upcoming post…
Emily Berman – Tessa
Tessa spends much of the play in transition, fighting to feel certain about something, whether it be her past decisions, her present feelings, or her next move. I relate to her process of working through life and love in lurches and stalls. The metaphor that comes to mind is navigating a dark, narrow corridor lined with china shelves; the only things to grasp for balance are valuable and fragile, and there’s this real fear of collateral damage along the way. Everyone probably experiences versions of the same feelings during times of transition. But as a twenty-something professional woman, I recognize and admire Tessa’s way of attempting to maintain a cool, adult front when an ugly, childish disaster hides just under the surface. But then again, we all feel that, sometimes, right? It’s not just me? Thank goodness…
Will Mobley – James
Sometimes as actors, when we are very fortunate, we encounter characters who we not only relate to but are inspired by. James is described as a “true romantic.” Cynics jump at the phrase “love at first sight” but it is an idea that holds truth. The sudden breathless quickening of the heart like an unexpected summer shower and the lightheadedness that trickles giddily down through your limbs and joints… When James experiences this magnetic connection the only option is to throw logic and caution to the wind. I admire that, and strive for it. Will James be successful in his quest? You’ll have to wait and see. But I think success lies not in the result, but in taking that first step out the door, in saying yes. There is a deep joy and fulfillment in reaching into the unknown and touching, if only briefly, the face of love.
Jarrod Zimmerman – Arnaud
Arnaud getting abducted by aliens really speaks to me. It’s what this show is about. Just kidding. But I bet you suddenly wondered what type of world premiere you’re seeing. We meet a completely lost Arnaud, who seeks control by putting his life on hold. I get that. Finding “control” by freeing myself of responsibility is something I’ve struggled with, especially because I tend to retreat into the sometimes endless vacuum of my mind. Lately, being very aware that I do this, I remind myself to connect with my wife, family and friends to tackle my problems, instead of by myself. You can’t control whether aliens abduct you, but you can control how it affects you. I guarantee that talking to someone about aliens is better than dealing with the aliens yourself. I bet you’re back to thinking there are going to be aliens… I won’t spoil anything for you.
Jeff Parker – Francois
For someone who had a rather undistinguished track record with women in high school and college, it’s quite the ego boost to play a character who thrives on the sexual attention he receives and the sexual confidence he expresses. Growing up, I always wanted to be James Bond and yet his desires (women, sex, booze, cards, queen and country) landed him in quite a bit of hot water (shark-filled pools, nose-diving planes, exploding nuclear devices). Though not nearly as life threatening, Francois finds himself in the midst of a family in crisis where there are no clear rules of engagement. How should he proceed? That’s the fun of it, I guess. It’s a thrill to play someone who is walking that edge.