|Michael Rose "mans up" as Wally the delivery boy|
He tries too hard to curry favor, overpromises then under delivers, but eventually Wally the delivery boy becomes a man. Similarly, Michael Rose has grown as an actor during the rehearsal process of The 1940s Radio Hour. Michael describes Wally as follows: “He starts out the show very naive with a fascination -- bordering on obsession -- with becoming part of the broadcast. He has the best intentions, but often underachieves. He does everything he can to endear himself to Lou the stage manager. He is star struck with Johnny, the featured vocalist. He is enamored by the female singers but his naiveté keeps him from being any sort of player.”
Wally wants so badly to break into show business, but after he gets his chance to be in the radio show, Michael says that he “realizes nothing has changed. He is still treated like the delivery boy. The luster of the being on the show begins to fade the more the war is talked about and the more Wally realizes what Biff (a musician leaving for the war) will face.” At first, Michael was drawn to the role of Wally because of his comedic appeal, but eventually he learned to find the depth in his character. “I have been trying to add subtle introspection of what I am doing and the pride that Biff has for what he is going to do for his country. I am trying to convey all that building up to my final line where Wally convinces himself, ’I’m gonna sign up!.’” Wally’s “transformation from bumbling young kid to determined young man was lost on me until the last few rehearsals when one of the cast members explained why and how to deliver that final line. Now I get goose bumps every time I say it.”
Michael does a great job of conveying Wally’s innocence, while keeping his eagerness in check, saying, “the challenge I had playing this character was trying to not go over the top. There were some parts that I had to reign in because it was too cheesy or just too much.” And just like Wally has to prove himself worthy of the radio show, Michael “wanted to prove to myself that the last show (Little Shop of Horrors, also directed by his wife Rachael) was not a fluke and that I could do more than I expected of myself. I have always seen myself as quiet shy person who doesn't like to be the center of attention. However, I am finding myself excited and exhilarated being on stage and performing. I hate to admit it but I do think I have been bitten by the acting bug.”
The 1940s Radio Hour runs through December 22nd. Reserved seats for this musical comedy sponsored by Weinstein Jewelers are available now at www.farmingtonplayers.org or at the box office (248) 553-2955.