In the Spotlight: Paul Bentzen
| 10:15AM.August 31st, 2012
30 questions for 30 seasons, core company actor Paul Bentzen gives us the lowdown on three decades at APT.
APT: Over the past 30 years, which show has been your favorite?
Paul Bentzen: The classic answer: the one I'm doing now. In this case Heroes.
APT: Do you have a specific pre-performance ritual?
PB: No, I like to get to them a bit early.
APT: What can we find you doing during your free time?
PB: Fly fishing, cooking, pickin' bluegrass with friends. Lately I've been wintering in NYC where I recharge my cultural batteries.
APT: If you were stranded on an island, what would be the one thing you took along?
PB: A good boat.
APT: What is your fondest memory of APT?
PB: On stage: Singing Wind and Rain as Feste, in actual wind and rain.
Off stage, showing up at rehearsal with a five-foot bull snake wrapped around my arm, and bleeding where it bit me. Awesome!
APT: What are your top three movies?
PB: Crazy Heart, Fanny and Alexander, The Pawn Broker
APT: What's your most embarrassing APT moment?
PB: When I unintentionally accused Randy Kim of ranting and raving.
APT: Any pets?
PB: Not anymore. RIP Wally and Darwin.
APT: What is an indulgence for you?
PB: Pigging out at the Dorf Haus's Bavarian Smorgasbord.
APT: Do you get nervous before a show?
PB: I'd call it excited anticipation.
APT: What's your favorite season?
PB: Spring and Fall, a tie.
APT: How is acting at APT different from other venues?
PB: You have to be able to speak and inhale bugs at the same time.
APT: What was your childhood ambition?
PB: To be a zoologist.
APT: What was the last thing you purchased?
PB: Shampoo and conditioner.
APT: Sweet or salty?
PB: A bit of both is nice.
APT: What are three words that describe your life?
PB: Charmed. Lucky. Quirky.
APT: What is the best part of performing outdoors, up the hill?
PB: Seeing the stars when the lights go to black.
APT: What's your favorite possession?
PB: My sense of humor.
APT: As an experienced banjo player, what's your favorite serenade?
PB: Banjo players don't serenade. You'll get a shoe thrown at you...or worse!
APT: What book do you suggest we all go out and read?
PB: Blood Meridian by Cormac McCarthy.
APT: What show has had the largest influence on you personally?
PB: Cherry Orchard all because of one scene between me as Firs and Tracy Arnold as Charlotte.
APT: APT has put you in some crazy costumes. Which is your favorite?
PB: Budd Hill's design for Angelo in The Comedy of Errors would be right up there. I also seem to recall having huge wings for Time in Winter's Tale. One night one broke and I flounced about like a ruptured chicken. Am I imagining that?
APT: Do you prefer having a mustache or going without?
PB: Without (for now).
APT: Where's your favorite place to eat?
PB: My backyard patio.
APT: It's Saturday Night. What's your drink of choice?
PB: Beer mostly. In summer I've been gravitating back to American lagers like Leinies. In winter, Guinness.
APT: What's your dream role?
PB: I'd like to do a really good role (doesn't have to be big) in a really good Indy film with a really good director.
APT: What would the title of your autobiography be?
PB: I Came, I Saw, I Stayed for Thirty @#$%@#$ Years!
APT: What's your proudest accomplishment at APT?
PB: Actually making a living doing what I love. I wish everyone could be so lucky.
APT: What's your favorite album/band?
PB: Impossible to say - so many. How about Gordon Lightfoot's very first album for United Artists. Also JD Crowe and the New South, Old Home Place.
APT: Did you ever think you'd spend thirty years at APT?
PB: When I first saw the outdoor stage and met Randy and Annie I knew that it was destiny that I would work there. Thirty years?? That's crazy!!
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