Published on July 15th, 2012 | by Biz Books
The Biz Interview: Darren Boquist and Ky Scott of “Armed”
Darren Boquist and Ky Scott find themselves Armed and extremely hilarious in the newest theatre production from Xua Xua Productions. We spoke to them to learn more about how they become involved in the new play and their individual creative processes.
What was were the elements that drew you to be part of this production?
Darren Boquist: Well, having been involved in the first incarnation of Armed and having a hilariously wonderful time I knew for sure I wanted to play this role again in the extended version.
Ky Scott: Dude loses balls. Dude gets a cannon arm. Need I say more? Seriously though, I was drawn to the script immediately. It’s hilarious! It’s so rare to read a new play off of your laptop that makes you laugh out loud interspersed with “What the f***?!”‘s (even alone in your apartment). It’s original, and quirky, and ballsy. Pun intended. Add that to the fact that it would give me the opportunity to play multiple, cartoon-like characters that stretched me and had no limits on how crazy or playful it could be. It’s exciting to be a part of a production like this. Vancouver can get a little play stuffy sometimes, and this is refreshing!
Can you share some of your creative process in preparing for the role from the initial planning of the production all the way through to opening night?
Darren Boquist: Originally, I thought that most of my work was already done having played Joe before but now that I am the only remaining original cast member and we have a new director and a new extended script full of new zany characters that Joe encounters I’m realizing that I need to treat this as a totally new play which is admittingly quite invigorating. And only a couple rehearsals in and I’m already laughing so hard sometimes I have to fall to the ground. If the audience experiences 10% of the laughs that I experience in rehearsal then they will have gotten their money’s worth of entertainment.
Ky Scott: The creative process is still very much that-in process. I don’t see the process of developing so many wacky characters stopping on opening night either-it’s one of those things. For myself, especially in a wild piece like this, I find I discover and develop the most by spending time with the character I’m creating. Sometimes it’s in rehearsal with focus and exercises, and sometimes it’s just in my head as I’m walking down the street to the grocery store, and sometimes it’s seeing qualities in friends and strangers that fit.
Are there any books or specific authors that have been influential to you so far in your creative journey?
Darren Boquist: I am a big fan of The Artist’s Way by Julia Cameron. It’s a great tool for releasing your creativity and inner child regardless of what your background is or what your artistic endeavours are.
Ky Scott: Do the writers of the script count? Because they have heavily influenced my creative journey on this play! I’ll be honest- once I start working on a play, I stop reading for fun. I feel too guilty about the fact that I should be memorizing lines instead.
What were the biggest challenges for you as an actor in preparing for this production and how did you deal with them?
Darren Boquist: Well, this play is a bit of a marathon for all the actors. The other 2 actors play I believe 5 crazy characters each and I’m stuck on stage essentially the entire play having to deal with them! Not to mention fighting off wolves, birthing sheep, and enduring military training on stage.
Ky Scott: Jumping in headfirst was a little intimidating. This is the first theatre production I’ve been apart of since graduating from Studio in December, and that alone can be a bit scary. Managing a schedule for jobs that help you pay bills and the job that you love doing is always a challenge. And within the play, it’s the biggest challenges of differentiating characters, creating new colours and nuances with each specific moment, and feeling like there’s never enough time to dig deep enough that also make it fun and exciting. That’s live theatre!
What can you share about any future projects that are in development?
Darren Boquist: My company Idea Factory Entertainment is currently in creation of an onsite theatre piece for the Vancouver Fringe Festival. It is entitled How to Love and will provide a completely new experience for the audience. Each audience member will have a headset and as they hear the story evolve they will become a part of the story. I’m really excited to see this project come to fruition.
Ky Scott: I may have been the only person in the history of Studio 58 that graduated without performing my solo show. So I have every intention of finding the right time and place (is there ever?) to birth that baby. It’s done! I swear! I just need to do it!
Armed plays July 18th – July 21st at Pacific Theatre at 8pm with a pay-what-you-can preview on July 17th.
For more information, please visit xuaxuaproductions.com.