We are pleased to present you with another actor spotlight, this time on company member (and resident Viking) Derrick Winger. This February, he plays Ray (Lone Star) in our first ever rotating repertory. Find out why he loves working on Lone Star just as much as any of those fancy Shakespeare scripts.
**Lone Star contains adult language and themes...and so does Derrick's interview. Enjoy!**
Why play with us at OSF?
Because they're the best! I mean that in all seriousness and not just because I've been with the company for six years now. I get to work with actors that aren't just good at their craft; they're Shakespeare scholars in their own right, and that makes all the difference in our final product. I really feel that our approach, especially in regard to language delivery, is the way that it should be done -- we have 6-year-olds that come to see our shows and love them because we make it accessible through the way we share the text!
Beyond that, this company really does feel like a family. From the first time I stepped foot on the stage at Stan Hywet, I knew I had found something special -- I'd put our performances up against any other company in terms of quality and I've exponentially increased the number of people in what I consider to be my extended family. I can honestly say I have met my favorite people here. We are full of love.
What Do you hope audiences will take away from seeing 'lone star'?
I hope they take away JOY! A sense of how big, bold, and wonderful life can be! This play is not Shakespeare, and there are some that might not even consider it a classic, but it is a great story with all the heart and laughter and catharsis of any masterpiece.
I also think it's a great way to showcase how the relationships we have within the company help us to create something that feels that much more real on stage. If the audience has half as much fun watching the play as we did putting it together, then they are in for a heck of an evening.
BEST Advice for taking care of your drunk brother at the bar?
Be ready to play Wing-man, whatever that entails. Could be setting him up with "one o' them blondes" or simply putting aside your own plans and shooting the s**t in an alley. Just be there for him...and take his keys.
Best thing you'll get to say?
***Derrick's response has been censored due to inappropriosity. Come see the show and we bet you can guess which line it was! So he offers this second favorite.***
Since that'll be censored for the website, let's go with "Hank Williams." Trust me, context is everything.
Worst THING YOU'LL have TO SAY?
There's a line about enjoying the pheromone laden odor of my brother's back seat after a date, which is the opposite of the reaction I would have in real life. (I also have difficulty remembering the line in rehearsals, so listen for it and keep me honest!)
Why do you love Shakespeare?
I could go on all day about this topic, and several of the company have already touched on things like the beautiful language, the timeless stories, the exploration of the human condition, and so on. So I would say ALL THOSE THINGS, but also the Fandom. When you perform or attend a Shakespeare play, you are entering into fellowship with the innumerable souls that have enjoyed him for centuries and all those that will continue to enjoy him in the future. When you experience Shakespeare, you are engaging in a shared cultural experience that transcends societies, language, and time - that's magic.
Favorite OSF role and why?
Sir Toby Belch from Twelfth Night. The only thing more fun than playing a drunken rogue is playing a drunken rogue with lines written by the greatest literary mind of all time. It should be criminal to have that much fun, and yet I walk free. "My very walk should be a jig!"
FAVORITE OSF Anecdote?
Many of my favorite moments have already been archived by previous Actor Spotlight participants and, in truth, my summers with OSF are a blur of happy instances mixed with wonder and girded with love, so it would be difficult to pick just one.
Instead, I will say that I will always cherish the many stories created with my friend, Henry C. Bishop. "He was a man, take him for all and all. I will not look upon his like again."