|Guy Copland as Professor Abraham Van Helsing |
with the madman Renfield (Gary Weinstein, seated)
"Believe in what you cannot. That is the essence of faith. To accept what cannot be proven." So says Professor Abraham Van Helsing, who tries to get others to see the truth, even if it requires them to believe in what they cannot see. Guy Copland plays Van Helsing in the Farmington Players production of Dracula, which opens this Friday October 2nd. Guy describes Van Helsing as a “philosopher and metaphysician who is ahead of his times. The most advanced scientist of his day, he knows more about obscure diseases than anyone in the world. He is noble, worldly, and has studied Count Dracula for many years. And thus, knows of his secret and that vampires do exist.”
Despite this superior knowledge, Van Helsing tries to convey his message in a manner that allows others to find the truth. As Guy says, “He knows more than anyone else. Yet, he is humble by all means and not arrogant at all. Just a man who can see things not only as they are, but as what they could be, and goes about his business like any other person. Mainly because the world isn't ready for some truths. … He answers a question with a question, or a riddle, in a way to help whomever he is speaking with realize for themselves the obvious answer, which is something that is not usually normally accepted or excepted. As Van Helsing says, ‘I have learned not to belittle anyone's beliefs - no matter how strange - for it is not the ordinary things which close our minds, but the extraordinary things. Those mysteries on the fringe of our thinking.’"
Guy can relate to the mysteries of Dracula from some extraordinary personal experiences, including “the fact that I did see a UFO not once but twice in the same night over a car factory one October many years ago, and have seen, heard, and felt the presence of ghosts when I worked at The Phoenix Theater back in the early 1980's. … I guess the fact that I have indeed seen, heard, and do believe all my encounters to hold true, is the same as Van Helsing who knows of vampires and their existence, yet doesn't parade around telling people about them. After all, there are a great many people would think us mad for doing so.”
Guy speaks glowingly of his “top drawer” cast mates: “Meredith Deighton (Mina), who is a delight to work with, David Galido (Dr. Seward) who is perfect in his role, and Gary Weinstein who creates an absolutely memorable madman as Renfield.” Guy is no stranger to professorial roles, having last graced the Barn stage as Professor Horace Gilmer in To Kill A Mockingbird. Guy is also a talented voice actor (see his website at www.motorcityvoiceover.com).
The Farmington Players' production of Dracula is proudly sponsored by Weinstein Jewelers. The show runs October 11 through November 2. Tickets can be purchased online at www.farmingtonplayers.org or by calling the box office at 248-553-2955.