#203 – Creating Characters (feat. Ryan Knowles)

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From Nellie Forbush to Evan Hansen, the librettos of Broadway musicals have been filled with complex characters for almost a century. And while those roles were originated and revived by astonishing actors, much of what makes those characters so fascinating is on the page, meaning written into the script itself. 

That’s what makes the work of our guests for this mini-series so remarkable. They’ve taken small supporting parts and turned them into fully realized characters – feeling just as developed and grounded as the leading counterparts. And what makes them even more remarkable is that they are often doing this for multiple characters within the same show. 

The Lightning Thief employs a cast of seven actors to bring the story of Percy Jackson on stage. Much of the show’s small cast is tasked with creating multiple characters, none more than actors Ryan Knowles. Using a versus title facility of voice and movement, he creates strikingly specific characters over and over in the show, including Charon, Hades and many many more. Here’s our conversation…