SHS Drama Profile: Ethan Baker on Playing 'Grandpa' in You Can't Take It With You

 11/19/2015 - 01:29

Ethan Baker plays "Grandpa" in the Saline High School drama club's production of You Can't Take it With You.

The Saline High School Drama Club presents “You Can’t Take it With You” Friday-Sunday at Saline High School. Showtimes are 7:30 p.m., Friday and Saturday and 2 p.m., Sunday.

The cast includes Ethan Baker, Dominic Bourassa, Elizabeth Crawford, Alyssa Dawson, Sophie Kolasinksi, Jared Martin, Alex Martinelli, Lexi Morris, Allie Pataro, Joseph Pryor, Rinn Ramcke, Liralyn Smith, Aliza Treber, Elaina Veasey, Jake White, Eileen Wiechmann, Collin Williams, and Merredith Zehnder. Members of the crew are...Matthew Adle, Livi Morgan, and Catherine Wei.  The production is directed by Kristen Glatz and the student directors are Alyssa Dawson and, Lexi Morgan. 

Today’s Q&A is with Ethan Baker, who plays “grandpa” in the production.

Name: Ethan Baker

Parents: Keith Baker, Sabrina Baker

Character: Martin Vanderhof

Tell us about your character: Grandpa is the oldest in the show, but one of the youngest at heart. He is perfectly content to collect snakes and watch graduation ceremonies all day, every day. The only thing he truly desires is the freedom to whatever he wants without anyone stopping him. He is perfectly carefree and happy.

What’s challenging about this role? Grandpa is an odd person, and sometimes I find it hard to wrap my head around him. While we are similar in many aspects, sometimes it is difficult to get in the mindset of a Wall Street businessman who gave up everything to go to the zoo whenever he wants. The most difficult part about portraying him he is truly unique; I've never met anyone like him, which can make getting in touch with the character hard.

Why do you think people will enjoy this play? It's hilarious. There is subtle humor, there is direct humor, everyone will find something funny. We've spend eight weeks on this production, and each rehearsal I find something new to laugh at.

Former roles/plays: Pericles in Pericles, Frankenstein's Monster, Nick Bottom in A Midsummer Night's Dream, Fred Phelps in The Laramie Project. I've been acting for 6 years now in a mix of school shows and community theatre.

What do you enjoy about being onstage?

Acting is the highest form of freedom. I'm not constrained to anything, not even my identity. When I am onstage, everything fades away. I get to step back from everything in the world and be nothing but creativity. I can do anything, I can be anyone and in that, I can be myself. It's a thrill that has no real comparison, and I have no clue what I would do without theatre in my life. 



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