QCT SPOTLIGHT: Joe Osier
No one quite lights up a stage like Joe Osier. No matter the role, no matter the show, Joe’s love for the stage shines through in every character he portrays. You might not believe it, but Joe’s theatre experience began only a few short years ago.
We caught up with Joe to learn more about his theatrical transformation and his current show for our April Spotlight…
Q: Tell us a bit about yourself, Joe:
A: Sue and I have been married for 40 years and we have two grown sons and three grandkids. We are both retired and love the theatre, traveling, visiting our grandkids, and sharing our lives.
Q: What was your theatre experience before QCT?
A: Before joining QCT, I had not performed in any production onstage at all.
Q: Was acting something you always wanted to try?
A: Even in high school I was interested in theatre. I just didn’t get around to getting involved. I was in sports, and my circle of friends did not include any theatre people. Looking back, it was my loss.
Q: What inspired you to finally audition?
A: I had recently retired from my position as Elementary Principal at Payson schools. The show was TALES OF A FOURTH GRADE NOTHING (2014). This had been a story that I remember reading to my class when I had been a teacher. I decided that this was an excellent time to go ahead and try it. Being retired, I felt I had time to devote to learning my lines and how to react to direction to bring my character alive.
The student theatre gave me the opportunity to interact with kids again – in a whole new and different set of circumstances. It allowed the kids and the adults to be on the same level – all just actors working together to put on a play.
Q: You adapted to the stage very quickly. What do you think allowed you to do that?
A: I guess, it is because I am very comfortable being in front of an audience. As a principal, I was frequently onstage addressing crowds at PTA meetings, awards assemblies, and school assemblies – addressing crowds and interacting with the audience. It always felt natural, and I had always been able to make myself heard even without a microphone.
Q: How do you believe theatre has made an impact on your life?
A: The theatre gives me an opportunity to imagine, invent, create, and pretend. The theatre has provided a whole new circle of friends – more like family. There is so much care and support for each other here.
I learned quickly that I wish I had gotten involved sooner. It feels like something that has been missing has been put together at last.
Q: You’ve also gotten your wife involved. What has it been like working with Sue onstage?
A: Working with Sue was very enjoyable. It gave us something else to do together. We had a great time rehearsing at home and offering each other suggestions and commentary. Sharing the interactions, stories and experiences we had onstage was also fun.
Q: What attracted you to our upcoming comedy, IS HE DEAD?
A: The play has an interesting premise and several plot twists. I play an older man, with two grown daughters. We are part of a group of friends that center around a very good, but poor, painter. The daughters are both in relationships – one with the painter and one with one of his friends. I have been swindled by an unscrupulous person, and I find out that the painter has also been conned.
This role provided me an opportunity to portray an “old man with a cane.” This is something that I have actually lived for many years. Continuing back problems cause me to use a cane frequently and have made some of my previous roles a little more challenging. In this play, I do have to act like I have been “cured,” so it will also be challenging.
Q: How do you feel now that you’re back onstage?
A: Very excited! There is so much to do! I find myself going through the lines and creating a whole new personality for my character. It is very fun to play with developing this new person; they way he acts, behaves, moves, and interacts with others.
Q: Why is a comedy like this important?
A: People are living in a strange world now filled with pressures, deadlines, obstacles, and even, yes, “fake news,” “fake political stories,” rumors, hate, and turmoil.
People need to LAUGH. To have fun. To forget about their real-world problems and get lost in a make-believe world where there might be some difficulties, but people rise up and overcome them with funny adventures and interactions along the way.
I hope audiences take away the idea that you may have problems, but persevere, be creative, depend on your friends, and believe in yourself and the people in your life.
Q: What advice would you give someone who has thought about acting, but has never auditioned?
A: Take the plunge! Get with it! Come on down! Run, walk, ride, skip, or hop down to Quincy Community Theatre and get involved. You don’t have to be onstage. In fact, many of the actors also were backstage volunteers, ushers, etc. before they auditioned. We cast “newbies” for every show! We will help you, support you, and teach you to soar!
IS HE DEAD?
May 3-6 & 11-13, 2018
Tickets On Sale April 9