Dan published his final observations on directing and the whole experience of producing a piece of theatre. He also says some wonderful things about each of his actors. I’m going to post what he said about me, because this is my blog, and my parents read it sometimes.
Jennymarie Jemison, as the lead and clear protagonist, had the toughest role, as she’s playing a character who’s largely absent in the script. All of the actors had a few key defining characteristics that were clear from their first appearance on the page to work from, and Jenny’s character is defined by her tendency to shrink, which is difficult to perform while still maintaining the role of the protagonist. I think she could play every role in everything. If I got a press release tomorrow from someone who announced that they were doing a production of Twelve Angry Men as a one-person solo show, and Jenny were playing every part, I’d be like, that’s a fucking good idea. She takes a part that could have easily been played as a shrinking violet and turns her into a reflection of what’s going on with the characters around her. You can follow the entire through-line of the play by watching her eyes. Every actor pushed both him- or herself – and me – to look beyond the obvious, surface interpretation of these people as airheads, or assholes, or pretentious goofballs, and turn them into living people whose choices, while sometimes inexcusable, are nonetheless understandable. Jenny’s character had no surface interpretation – she was given very little definition as a choice made by the script, and the way that she turned her into a real person, confined by the fact that she’s been unable to define herself, is what makes the entire play work for me.