by Lorie Lewis Ham
KRL covers a lot of theatre, both local and in other parts of California, and we have taken our readers behind the scenes many times to get to know actors, directors, and others involved in putting a show together. This week we are once again doing a q and a with a local actor-this time it is Alex Vaux, who is currently playing Bob Cratchit in GCP’s production of A Christmas Carol at 2nd Space in Fresno.
KRL: Are you from Fresno? If not, how did you end up here?
Alex: My parents are both from Fresno, but moved to Canada for work. I was born in Toronto and then grew up in Kennett Square, Pennsylvania, before moving here in the early 90s.
KRL: What schools have you attended?
Alex: I went to Clovis West High School and Fresno State.
KRL: What are some of the jobs that you have had?
Alex: I work in the scene shop for GCP building the sets, but I’ve been a lab technician at a winery and worked retail.
KRL: When did you first get involved in acting and why?
Alex: I used to do little skits in the backyard for the neighbors as a kid, but didn’t fully get into theater until eighth grade. I felt it would be fun and despite being very shy, I didn’t mind performing.
KRL: What was your first part?
Alex: Ensemble in Wizard of Oz in elementary school.
KRL: What are some of the shows you have been in, and the parts you have played?
Alex: I’ve done a number of shows over the last fourteen years with Good Company Players. Ones of note are Epic Proportions where I played Benny, the unlucky but lovable guy trying to break into show biz. It was my first lead role. Since then I’ve also been in Over the River and Through the Woods, Witness for the Prosecution, Fools, and now A Christmas Carol to name a few.
KRL: Do you have a favorite type of show?
Alex: I prefer comedies.
KRL: I am not surprised; you are very good at being funny! I have only seen you in plays, do you also do musicals, too?
Alex: I do! I’m not the best dancer or singer so I try to stay at 2nd Space, but I have been in a handful of Roger Rocka’s shows including Beauty and the Beast, Miss Saigon, Crazy for You, Young Frankenstein, and Peter and the Starcatcher.
KRL: What do you like best about acting and singing?
Alex: I get to stretch my acting abilities. I enjoy being able to do some dramatic stuff, but I like when I get to be characters the best. So many of my roles are just me with an accent but every now and then, like in A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum and Meet Me in St Louis, I really get to play around with the character and let Alex vanish.
KRL: What is the hardest?
Alex: Sad scenes. I have a hard time tapping into that part of myself to really bring the emotion to sad scenes.
KRL: What are some of your future goals and dreams?
Alex: I’d love to be a wine maker.
KRL: Who are some of your heroes?
Alex: I’d say in the world of acting and comedy probably Martin Short, Harold Ramis, and Dan Aykroyd. But in the super sense, The Flash!
KRL: I love The Flash, too! What do you feel has helped you the most in growing as an actor?
Alex: Working alongside many different actors, both veterans of the stage and newbies alike. I’ve learned the most by just doing shows. And over the last fourteen years I’ve done close to twenty shows.
KRL: What advice would you have for someone wanting to get into acting?
Alex: Show up to auditions as often as you can. The community is a welcoming one, and if you don’t get cast right away or in a lead role immediately, it’s okay. Ensemble and understudy roles can be just as fun and rewarding.
KRL: Any funny and/or inspirational stories to share?
Alex: One time during a show in high school, one of the walls of the set fell down mid performance. The role I was playing happened to be a techie and had a tool belt on. So, I just pulled out the screw gun and a handful of screws and put the wall back up, mid scene like it was part of the show.
KRL: That is hilarious! What is your dream role?
Alex: Either character in Oh, Hello.
KRL: Is it hard balancing work and acting?
Alex: When I worked retail it was pretty difficult. Most of my shifts were at night, which is when a show would be going. So for six years I had to stop acting. Now that I work at the scene shop, it’s much more convenient to do shows.
KRL: Do you have any hobbies?
Alex: I like to read, play video games, and I’m the leader of the Ghostbusters: Fresno Division. We’re a Ghostbusters costume group who do Comic Convention appearances and charity events when we can.
KRL: How fun! What is it like to play Bob Cratchit in A Christmas Carol?
Alex: It’s fun because he’s such a polar opposite of Scrooge. Despite being poor, he’s always ready with a smile and a Merry Christmas.
KRL: Were you a fan of A Christmas Carol before getting this role?
Alex: I had been familiar with it as a kid, watching the Muppet version, the Disney cartoon, and the Ghostbusters cartoon episode about it. I liked all of those, so getting to be in the show was a treat.
KRL: Any special challenges to the role, especially with this being such a well known story?
Alex: Not so much. I just hope I can bring him to life in a way the audience enjoys.
KRL: Is there any other role in A Christmas Carol you would really like to play someday?
Alex: Marley or Scrooge.
KRL: Is there anything else you would like to add?
Alex: Come enjoy A Christmas Carol running now at 2nd Space until December 23!
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