Currently playing Yank, the downtrodden common man in Eugene O’Neill’s The Hairy Ape at Torn Space Theater, Patrick Moltane is an actor of indeterminate age who seems to pop up everywhere. One minute he’s Tilden in Sam Shepard’s Buried Child at Torn Space, the next he’s Henry V at Shakespeare in Delaware Park. He’s the young husband in God of Carnage at the Kavinoky. He’s Irish, he’s English, he’s American. He’s working class, he’s upper class. He’s conniving; he’s an innocent. He’s a hero; he’s a villain. With a boyish face that can turn world-weary with the furrowing of his brow, he’s in his 20s, in his 30s, in his 40s.
In The Hairy Ape, directed by Dan Shanahan, Moltane describes his character as “a working-class brute who after a chance encounter with a member of the fairer sex and aristocracy is provoked to discover where he belongs in this world.” This would seem to be a perfect opportunity for a versatile actor. Below, Moltane submits to The Public Questionnaire.
What word would your friends use to describe you?
What quality in your current character is most unlike your own personality?
He is often looking for a fight.
What quality in your current role is most like your own personality?
He doesn’t know where he belongs but he is pursuing an answer.
When and where were you the happiest?
I was happiest in St. Clair Shores, Michigan at our wedding reception when [actor] Morgan [Chard] and I were introduced to our family and friends as Mr. and Mrs. Moltane.
What is your idea of hell on earth?
Dealing with auto mechanics.
What is your greatest fear?
Disappointing my family.
Which talent do you most wish you had?
I would like to be a talented writer and better represent myself on paper.
What superpower do you most wish you had?
The superpower I most wish I had is the power to manipulate time and space so I could introduce my parents to my daughter—that would be something to see.
What would you change about your appearance?
I would like a better head of hair.
What trait do you most dislike in others?
I cannot abide a cheat or liar.
What do you most value in your friends?
The fact that they have stood by me in good times and bad is what I most value in my friends.
What quality do you most value in a good director?
There is no one quality I value most in a good director, however strong preparation resulting in an informed, specific, and viable production concept is a good start. Directors who enjoy collaboration and the creative process are easily identifiable. Their work ethic and passion for the production are contagious. A good director has the ability to unite and embolden an ensemble inspiring them to take risks, attack the text, love their characters, and trust each other, thereby lifting the quality of the experience for audience and ensemble members alike.
What is your guilty pleasure?
Eating junk food during The Biggest Loser is my guilty pleasure.
Who is your favorite fictional hero?
The title character from The Littlest Leaguer by Syd Hoff is my favorite fictional hero.
Who is are your real life heroes?
My Aunt Patty and Uncle Jimmy are my real-life heroes.
What do you consider to be the most overrated virtue?
On what occasion do you lie?
I lie when it is the lesser of two evils. This usually occurs when I am in a theater lobby.
What was the subject of your last Google search?
Ava Crowder. If you haven’t yet you should consider checking out the FX series Justified based on a short story “Fire in the Hole” by Elmore Leonard.
If you come back in another life, what person or thing would you like to be?
What role, in which you will never be cast, is perfect for you?
Konstantin Treplev in Anton Chekhov’s The Seagull on Shakespeare Hill with Hoyt Lake as a backdrop and the Rose Garden above.
What is your motto?
“It’s not how many times you get knocked down; it’s how many times you get back up.” Colonel George A. Custer.