GLENN HAZELDINE ON BEING ANT

10.07.12

Glenn Hazeldine is currently playing disillusioned Gen-X’er Ant in Porn.Cake to great reviews. Next up he plays Ant, again, in Rick Viede’s wickedly irreverent A Hoax which previews at the Stables from 20 July. We spoke to Glenn about stepping from one Ant to another in a matter of days….

On the differences and similarities between each character:

Both Ants are living lonely, isolated lives and are desperate for someone to connect with. However, they have boldly different approaches to dealing with their predicaments. Despite this overarching similarity, I always, as an Actor, try to find fresh aspects of my own condition to explore and ‘mine’ for inspiration when building a role, so they never really feel similar. A recent break-up has provided vast amounts of fuel on this occasion…

On the difficulty of moving from one character to the next in a matter of days (Porn.Cake closes 14 July, and A Hoax previews from 20 July):

As things turned out, there was no actual crossover of the two Griffin plays. We closed the La Boite season of A Hoax on the last Saturday in May. I flew home on the Sunday and started rehearsing Porn.Cake the next day. We only had a very short window to rehearse Vanessa Bates’ play (Porn.Cake) so there was no time for timid toe-dipping… we had to leap right in to it. Porn.Cake is technically very difficult, perhaps the trickiest play I’ve ever been in and so I’m grateful and relieved that Shannon Murphy, our accomplished Director, ran a mightily tight ship. She has such a keen eye and it was a joy! For the Griffin season of  A Hoax we only have four days to re-jig the production for the demanding nuances of the Stables Theatre. I am blessed to be working with another fine Director, Lee Lewis, so this lofty endeavour doesn’t phase me in the least. I’ll be spending the final three weeks of that season rehearsing David Williamson’s, Rhinestone Rex and Miss Monica, which begins a national tour the day after A Hoax closes. So I reckon by then I might be ready for a holiday.

What drew Glenn to the character of Ant in A Hoax:

The opening scene of A Hoax is so curious and mysterious and beguiling. I was drawn in from page one. I suppose it’s also fun to play characters who find themselves so far out on the edge… and Rick Viede has no hesitation in pushing the envelope with outlandish daring. And in any case, I absolutely could not say no to working with Lee Lewis, who I have admired from afar for ages.

On what drives people to write hoaxes:

I don’t know what drives people to write hoaxes… but I’m constantly stunned by the daring given that discovery is surely inevitable. I am drawn to them and the people behind them. In a sense, Actors get to play out mini-hoaxes all the time… reinventing themselves as a role demands. but to carry this pretence over into the ‘real world’ takes some daring and commitment. Such gutsy ambition.
I’m particularly drawn to an account of the highly publicised theft of the Mona Lisa in 1911 that suggests the mastermind of the crime had no interest in profiteering from the sale of the stolen painting, he just wanted it out of the way so he could sell 6 meticulous fakes to gullible millionaires, each unaware of the other paintings, thus multiplying the spoils by 6. This theory, however, has been discounted by some as a literary hoax concocted by an American journalist in 1932 who wanted to sell his story to a magazine. So that’s a hoax within a hoax!

A Hoax opens on 20 July, for more info and to book tickets, click here.