Meet the Cast of PROOF – Jessica Watson is Claire

jessicaWhat is your role in this production? I am playing ‘Claire’, the older sister of the play’s protagonist. Claire can be quite overbearing, but everything she does is done in what she thinks is the best interest of her younger sister, Catherine. It’s very interesting to watch her progression through the play, and hear what the other character say about her as time passes and flashes back – it’s almost as though she is several characters within herself, always trying to put others first, but stifling her own exasperation. She’s a ticking time bomb of frustration. I love it.

Why did you come out for Proof? Having previously read the script, I was ridiculously excited to hear that the show was being performed at the Walterdale. This show is filled with so much emotion, there is a lot of tension, many opportunities to really let go of any inhibitions you might have as a performer. Very excited. I believe there was some robot-dancing happening during my audition? I was the robot. But, aside from loving the script, I wanted to gain some experience outside of University, and I thought the Walterdale would be a wonderful place to start. I really enjoy working with all of the people I’ve met at school, but it’s nice to be working with a group of complete strangers as well!

What is your background in Theatre? I come from a fairly large town in Ontario, where I was a part of the Georgetown Little Theatre for three years, participating in both the Youth and Adult Companies. During my time with them, I performed in 5 plays, from The Crucible to Pride and Prejudice, as well as a dozen one acts, and a couple of dinner theatres. When I came out to Alberta, I was able to expand my horizons a bit more, participating in both Mad Forest (ABBEDAM) and Young Frankenstein (Students’ Union) at the University of Alberta last year. Over the summer, I was a part of Impurities (Edmonton Fringe) and I currently perform with Grindstone Theatre in The 11 O’Clock Number, which is an improvised musical. It’s a blast. I’m incredibly lucky to have so many opportunities, and Proof will be my first, but not my last, performance at  Walterdale.

What do you most connect to about the play? I connect with the idea that all of the characters are striving towards what they think is in the best interest of themselves and each of the other characters. They are all so different though, that their idea of ‘right’ is generally not that at all. Each of the characters is incredibly unique and complex, just like people in the real world. Their relationships are grounded in reality, which I am sure many people can relate to. I know that I

Proof is about Math to some degree, how are you at math?  Got any math stories? All of my math stories are sad stories. I think the worst was at my job this summer. I was working in a games booth, which I didn’t often do, so I was being very enthusiastic and loud. The game which I was running involved rolling some rubber balls into slots, and at the end, adding up all of the numbers on the slots, and doling out prizes to those who scored high enough or low enough. Seems simple, yes? Apparently not for me. Normally, I’m fairly good at addition, but for some reason that day I was off my game, probably because it was very hot, and my boss was manning the game next to mine, so that added some pressure. A young boy was playing my game, and at the end, I added his score, and loudly declared for all to hear that he had won a prize! My elation faded quickly as my supervisor pointed out that where the boy had only rolled three balls into the ‘six’ slot, I had multiplied six by FOUR, and he had not, in fact, won anything at all. What a miserable, miserable day for us all. I felt awful. I think I’ll stick to theatre, not math.

What are you enjoying the most about this production? I am enjoying all of the actors with whom I am working! We are such a diverse group of individuals, yet we all get along swimmingly! And the crew, or, as I call them inside my heads, the demigods of wonder and light. They make sure that everything gets done. Essentially, I have been given an opportunity to work on an amazing project with some terrific people. I feel very blessed.

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