Skip to main content Skip to footer site map

Interview: Daniel Petzold of AIRNESS at Park Square Theatre

Interview: Daniel Petzold of AIRNESS at Park Square Theatre

Where do five oddball rock fanatics go to express their inner shred genius? Dingy bars and cramped stages all across the nation vying for a place at the National Air Guitar Championship. Following them on their quest to achieve 'Airness' on the long road to qualification, this righteous and smile-inducing comedy shows how community is forged in unexpected places.

We chat with cast member Daniel Petzol who plays Facebender!

How does it feel to have live audiences and theatre back?

It's the absolute best. Theatre doesn't exist without an audience. And we all did our best with zoom readings and livestreams, but its about sharing the space. Sharing a single, intangible, never-quite-exactly-the-same moment with strangers. I really missed it and I'm really grateful for it.

How does your role compare to other roles you've played?

Facebender's a lover and I tend to play lovers. Sometime's I play sociopathic lovers that love so hard they murder people. Sometimes I play egotistical lovers who only really love themselves. But Facebender is a universal lover. He loves his fellow humans, his friendships, the precise moment he's in, and the beautiful artistry that is air guitar.

What was your process for developing your character?

I played around. Chelsea's characters all have such distinct voices and points of view that I just tried to embody what was written. And then, anything that felt right and was fun to do I tried to investigate a little further. And our lovely director Angie was all about playing and finding things we didn't expect. Also, to be honest, I grew a mustache and get to wear a sweet wig. Those basically play Facebender for me.

Interview: Daniel Petzold of AIRNESS at Park Square Theatre

Did you face any challenges with your role or the production?

The show walks a fine line between fun and playful humor and real honest connection. Finding where to lean into the absurdity and where to lean into the heart was a fun but sometimes challenging line to walk.

Do you have a favorite moment in the show?

I'm a pretty big fan of the very last moment in the show. But I wouldn't dare say what it is. I mean, just come see it. You know you want to.

Do you have a favorite song in the show?

I was a big Ramones fan as a teenager and a big Tom Waits fan in my twenties, so "I Don't Want To Grow Up" hits a lot of marks for me.

How was working with the cast and the creative team?

Awful. They're all talentless hacks...just kidding. It was lovely. They're kind, they're fun, they're brimming with artistry. Its Thursday afternoon and I haven't seen them since Sunday and I freaking miss them! Thank God for the group text.

What do you hope the audience takes away when you see Airness?

I hope they see it and want to express themselves. I hope they do some tiny, silly, just for fun, emotive, crazy, beautiful, joy-giving activity. If you want to do it, it's worth doing.

Favorite local spots?

Bar Brava, Black Walnut Bakery, and a tree stump by the creek at Utepils Brewing. There are always baby ducks there.

Thank you Daniel for your time! To see Daniel in Airness at Park Square Theatre, click here

Headshot courtesy of Daniel Petzold Press photo Dan Norman Photography

Related Articles View More Minneapolis / St. Paul Stories

From This Author - Jared Fessler

Jared [He/Him] is originally from Iowa but currently resides in Minneapolis, Minnesota. He grew up doing theatre and studied theatre and musical theatre in college. He works in workforce development and... (read more about this author)

Interview: Reed Sigmund of SCHOOL OF ROCK at The Zephyr Theatre
July 5, 2022

Andrew Lloyd Webber's School of Rock brings a full scale broadway-style musical to the banks of the St. Croix River! A star-studded cast rocks out under the summer stars. Sparkling cocktails, dramatic lights, and fabulous music.

Interview: Anne Wieben of DIE LUSTIGE WITWE, 'THE MERRY WIDOW' at Opera On The Lake
July 5, 2022

Opera on the Lake is thrilled to be bringing Franz Lehar's operetta masterpiece to life at the Como Lakeside Pavilion on July 26, 27, and 29, 2022!

Interview: Patrick Scully of PRIDE 2022 - LIVE at Patricks Cabaret And Hennepin Theatre Trust
July 5, 2022

In conjunction with The Hennepin Theatre Trust's LGBTQIA+ Exhibit, Patrick's Cabaret will present Pride 2022 - LIVE! a very special Cabaret in their 3rd Floor performance space, the 'Studio 900', on Saturday, July 16, 2022. Expect an amazing evening of performance, media, cocktails (including non-alcoholic) and a lot of not to be missed! The cabaret will feature works by: Apocalypse Theatre, Lori Dokken, Kohl Miner, Ann Marsden, Chris Stark, Venus DeMars, and Patrick Scully - mc.

Review: LOVE'S LABOR'S LOST at Classical Actors Ensemble
July 3, 2022

What did our critic think of LOVE'S, LABOR'S, LOST at Classical Actors Ensamble?

Review: CAMBODIAN ROCK BAND at Theater Mu
July 1, 2022

What did our critic think of CAMBODIAN ROCK BAND at Theater Mu? This production was at the Jungle Theater as it was in co-production with Theater Mu. It was my first time at the Jungle Theater and the space was a great fit for this production. As an Asian-American, I always apprieacte that art that Theater Mu produces and think everytime I see a production through Theater Mu, how lucky am I that I live in a city where we have the second largest Asian-American Theater in the nation?!