Originally posted on BroadwayWorld.com
Tell us about your character in the show, Ian.
Ian is a 52 year-old man who arrives into a bar, having pre-arranged to meet another 52 year-old man, Jimmy. When Ian was 16 in 1974, he threw a bomb into a bar and killed six people, including Jimmy’s father. So he’s come, having never met him before, to in some way I suppose, find some sort of understanding. He’s full of guilt, and shame, and in some way, he’s looking for forgiveness. I would imagine he’s going to try and see a relative of the six people if he can, but he chooses Jimmy first because he understands that this man is the same age as him and he hopes that because he is 52 and he was 16 in 1974 himself, he hopes that Jimmy will understand the fact that he was a kid. It doesn’t go all according to plan, though.
You previously starred in the play when it was in Ireland, correct?
Yes, we began in 2012 at the Abbey Theatre in Dublin. We did it there first, and then in 2014 we brought it to back to the Abbey in Dublin, and then we did a tour of the border counties, the counties that sort of cross the divide between Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland at the theaters along the border. Then we did it London in 2014, and now we’re finally coming to New York in 2016.
Do you think, now that it is a New York, the audience is going to respond differently?
Yes, they do everywhere we go. I think it’s going to be to be interesting because we’ve only really done a few previews. We’re still finding our feet with the space. Every time we go to a different theatre we have to, sort of, adjust the plane, somewhat, and of course we’ll play to different theaters. And, I assume the Irish Repertory Theatre will have an Irish-American audience, so it’s going to be interesting to see what they think of it, now. It’s a very universal theme, I think, even though it’s very specific to these individuals, it’s specific to Belfast. It’s quite universal in it’s themes of reconciliation. I think it’s called Quietly because it’s about two individuals who take it upon themselves what the government has spectacularly failed to do. We’re also all very excited to be in New York, and we’re all very excited to present this play in New York, considering it’s been four years and we’re just very curious to see how New York audiences respond to it.
You also starred on THE TUDORS. What was that experience like, and do you prefer stage or screen when it comes to acting?
Their both fascinating, and their both so very different. First of all the relationship with the audience is a very different relationship with the camera. I also there’s something about doing things in real time. I mean, this play is about an hour and ten minutes long, and it takes place in real time, so, once it’s starts, you’re not getting off that trail until it’s over. And there’s something very liberating about that, you know? There’s no stopping and cutting and retaking. It’s a very nice way to become present in the moment. You can’t just be present for it to work, and that’s where I can sort of disappear. It’s a very nice feeling.