Sunday, December 04, 2005

Chris Graham

When I was taking courses at Portland Actors Conservatory there were three or four actors who stood out, all of whom have graduated in the last two-three years, and have begun to work around town. But, one of them doesn't work enough, and I wish he would. Chris Graham (currently in 2Board's production of "Dog Opera") is young, has the chops, commits himself fully on stage, and earns my trust so that even when he's not at top form I'm willing to go with him, since I know he's going somewhere, even if he might hesitate at a turn or two along the way.

I would like to see Chris work more, for my own sake as audience member, but also for the sake of his craft. He needs to get as much experience as possible, as quickly as he can. If he doesn't, he's at risk of letting mannerism and attitude take over. He hasn't yet, but I can feel the risk under the surface. For Chris not to succumb, he needs to work with as many good directors in as many different venues as possible. For instance, I'd like to see him work on a couple of large stages--as part of a large and ably professional cast--not just in black box productions.

Chris is an example of an actor with good instincts and emotional availability--which have allowed him to milk the most from his training and early roles--and who needs the discipline that can be instilled by getting in over one's head. Obviously, I'm rooting for him.

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