BWW Interview: Cast Members of JOSEPH AND THE AMAZING TECHNICOLOR DREAMCOAT at Gettysburg Community Theatre
by Andrea Stephenson
Community, belonging, family-these are three words many people use to describe their experience with community theatre. In the production of Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat at Gettysburg Community Theatre that sense of family is literal. One family has three generations represented on stage--Pat and Dave Conklin, their daughter and son-in-law Carrie and Greg Trax, and their daughters Tessa and Audrey Trax. Before opening night of Joseph, some of The Family members were trying to recall when they started performing. Third grader Audrey Trax traced her stage experience back to when she was three years old. For Audrey and Tessa's grandmother, Pat, the answer was easy, as this performance of Joseph is her debut performance.
Audrey Trax (Ensemble) was recently seen as Louise Lerman in Ruthless!, which is her favorite role to date.
Carrie Trax (Narrator) not only directs and performs but also teaches voice and piano lessons. Among her favorite roles is Roxie in Chicago.
Dave Conklin (Jacob) describes his character as "the old man with lots of sons and wives." He fondly remembers playing Caesar Rodney in 1776, one of his favorite shows of all time.
Greg Trax (Pharaoh) has appeared in a number of performances at Gettysburg Community Theatre. One of his favorite roles is the Voice of Audrey II in Little Shop of Horrors.
Pat Conklin (Jacob's wife) is getting her first taste of being on-stage in this performance of Joseph. While her favorite role is that of Mom and Gramma, she has greatly enjoyed this experience.
Tessa Trax (Ensemble) was also seen in last season's performance of Ruthless! in which she played the murderous child actress Tina Denmark.
BWW: Did you each decide individually to audition for this show, or was it a group decision?
Carrie: The four of us, the Trax family, we all decided. And then we talked them [Pat and Dave] into it.
Greg: If Carrie and I are both going to do a show, the kids have to do the show, otherwise rehearsals are hard for us, so we often do shows as a family.
BWW: Tessa and Audrey, one of the main themes in Joseph is dreams. Tell us about a dream that you have for your future.
Tessa: I want to be on Broadway!
Audrey: I don't know. Oh, I want pigs. I want an orange house and pigs and more pigs and a broccoli garden.
BWW: For the adults, on the theme of dreams, what would you say is One Dream that has come true for you?
Carrie: Having these two girls [Tessa and Audrey] to share the adventure with.
Pat: We have two sons in addition to Carrie. They're all grown up, everybody's kind of gone on into their own world, but it's so fun to bring them all back together as adults. Everyone is just a joy to be around.
Dave: I would reiterate that. A close family is the best thing.
BWW: Carrie, as the Narrator, you not only have to tell the story of Joseph but be in the story. What would you say has been the most challenging part of that role?
Carrie: Knowing when to be part of the story and when not to be part of the story. I'm so used to being part of the story and this time I have to pretend like I'm not there a lot of times, even though I'm on stage. I have to direct the attention towards what's going on on stage and pretend I'm not there.
BWW: In the Bible story of Joseph, God plays a major role as one of the characters. However, in the musical, God does not appear. If a new version of Joseph was written with God as a character, what famous actor would you want to see play God?
Greg: Anthony Hopkins
Tessa: Lin-Manuel Miranda
Audrey: Ben Platt
Pat: I think George Clooney because he's beautiful
Dave: The voice of Darth Vader. James Earl Jones
BWW: In one word, describe how this show makes you feel.
Greg: I'm Pharaoh so-royal.
Carrie: I was going to say happy. I'm going to say colorful.
Pat: I'm going to say scared just because it's my first show. There's a little fear there.
BWW: If you weren't in the show, what is it about this production that would convince you to come see it?
Pat: This family.
Carrie: The brothers. The guys who play Joseph's brothers are fantastic. The group of brothers have come together-they steal the show.
Audrey: I like the pillars-the colored pillars on the set.
Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat is indeed a joyful and colorful show. Tickets are selling fast, so don't miss your opportunity to see this family-friendly show at Gettysburg Community Theatre. Catch Joseph on weekends January 5-January 21. For tickets visit www.GettysburgCommunityTheatre.org