Deanna Myers in "You on the Moors Now"

October 20, 2016
Stories

INTRODUCTION
Deanna Myers is a bright Korean American adoptee who shines in the play "You on the Moors Now" by The Hypocrites running at The Den Theatre until Sunday, October 30th. Beginning as a scientist, Deanna became an actress after viewing a corpse. Read more about Deanna below and click here for more information and tickets.

‍Deanna Myers in "You on the Moors Now"

WHAT'S YOUR PERSONAL STORY?
I'm a Korean-American adoptee who was raised in the suburban Detroit area.

Growing up, it was sometimes difficult to really know how to relate to my surroundings. My community was largely traditional, conservative and white.I think this contributed to my sensibilities as an artist because I had to do a lot of "filling in the blanks" and relying on my imagination to create a world where I didn't feel completely alone. 

I originally moved to Chicago and went to University of Illinois for their science programs and their strong record where contributions to the social justice and public service communities are concerned.

I saw my first cadaver in my first or second semester, and I couldn't stop wondering where she came from, and how she ended up there in front of me, which was when I realized that I was a story-teller, and not a surgeon.

"You on the Moors Now" by The Hypocrites 

WHAT'S YOUR CHARACTER STORY IN "YOU ON THE MOORS NOW"?
In "You on the Moors Now," Jaclyn Backhaus, the playwright, imagines what might happen if familiar literary heroines meet just after they've turned down proposals from their suitors. Liz Bennet (Pride and Prejudice), Cathy (Wuthering Heights), Jane Eyre, and Jo March (Little Women) all become acquainted with one another in a sort of mystical, non-linear place called "The Moors," and find strength in one another and their search for independence. 

Jo, who I play, has turned down a proposal from her best friend, Theodore Laurence. While she feels a deep affection and devotion to him, she isn't in love with him and cannot bring herself to say yes. Upon meeting the other women, her dreams of pursuing something outside of what is expected of her are validated, and she finds a great deal of courage through her relationships with them.

WHAT CHALLENGES DOES YOUR CHARACTER FACE TELLING THIS STORY?
Jo often finds herself in the awkward place of being “in between.” She is torn between her desire to be herself and being what is expected of her. She is fiery and fearless, but filled with self-doubt. Though the rejection of their suitors causes a gender war, and Jo is very much in a position of having to defend her physical safety, much of her conflict is internal.

HOW DOES YOUR CHARACTER OVERCOME THOSE CHALLENGES?
Jo finds comfort in the women with whom she has formed a very deep bond, and utilizes her unwavering loyalty to them as the courage and motivation she needs to face her fears and doubts.

ANY LAST COMMENTS?
Thanks for reading!

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Mia Park
Mia Park shares her passion of discovery through teaching yoga and acting. Currently studying acupuncture and Chinese medicine, Mia is also a producer, writer, motivator, and celebrator of life. Mia has lived in Chicago for over twenty years and calls this city that works her home.

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DePaul student Harmony Zhang ​acts in The House of Bernarda Alba​​ by Federico García Lorca, directed by Jeremy Aluma​. ​Lorca’s final play set in the provincial Andalusia, Spain, ignites with the funeral service of Bernarda Alba’s second husband. Ever determined that her five grown daughters maintain a house of honor, Bernarda declares they will have an eight-year mourning period of absolute seclusion. When the eldest daughter receives a large inheritance, potentially sweeping her away from this fate and into an engagement with a handsome bachelor, conflict brews among the sisters repressed by Bernarda’s rule. Set in a time of tumultuous political climate, this story explores the underbelly of what happens when a tyrant seizes power. The House of Bernarda Alba runs Tuesday through Saturday at 7:30 PM, and Saturday and Sunday at 2:00 PM November 7, through November 12, 2017. Free tickets can be reserved on October 27, 2017 at noon at the box office, by calling 773-325-7900, or emailing theatreboxoffice@depaul.edu. Press Opening is Wednesday, November 8, 2017 at 7:30 PM. **Preview is Tuesday, November 7, 2017 at 7:30 PM. The House of Bernarda Alba will be performed in Room 403 of The Theatre School at DePaul University at 2350 N Racine Ave, Chicago, IL 60614 What's your personal story? I grew up in Tucson, Arizona as one of very few Chinese Americans in my neighborhood. I remember that my sister and I were the only Chinese kids in my whole elementary school. However, my family attended a Chinese church in downtown Tucson, and I also attended Tucson Chinese School where I learned to read and write Mandarin Chinese. I’m very thankful for the persistence that my parents had to have my sister and me grow up learning Chinese and holding on to our ethnic culture. However, growing up, I felt like I was never fully Chinese nor fully American. I didn’t feel the need to blend in with the other kids, but I also desired to connect better with others. An opportunity came up in kindergarten when the entire grade put on a show for the whole school. This was the first time that I felt like I was part of a team, part of a larger group effort to create something fun and beautiful. I remember that year, our production was called ‘To the Future and Beyond,’ and I sang the final solo of the show. In middle school and high school, I continued to take drama classes whenever possible. I loved learning about the lives of people so different from me, memorizing my lines, and sharing those stories with audiences. In college at Duke University, I decided to major in Psychology and Theater Studies, and also performed in three of the Theater Department’s Mainstage shows. Currently, I’m in my second year of my MFA in Acting program at The Theatre School at DePaul University. What's your character's story in "The House of Bernarda Alba”? My character’s name is Angustias, which means anguish or distress. She is the eldest unmarried daughter of Bernarda Alba and is already 39. Angustias is the sole daughter of Bernarda Alba’s former husband, while the rest of her sisters are the daughters of Antonio Maria Benavides, the man they are all mourning at the top of the show. Angustias’ father was rich, so when Antonio Maria Benavides dies and the property must be divided, Angustias’ share of the estate is much larger than that of her sisters. This wealth that Angustias has is then attractive to Pepe, who is trying to marry her, and while Angustias truly believes that he loves her for her, she really just wants to be loved and free from the oppression and alienation she feels within the walls of Bernarda’s house. What challenges does your character face telling this story? Angustias is constantly struggling with the antagonistic energy she receives from her sisters. No matter what she does, her sisters find some way to make her feel even more alienated and separate from the group. No one really gives her a chance to share more about herself. Angustias is always defending herself, but somehow it always comes off as offensive towards her sisters. She doesn’t feel understood. She wants her mother’s approval, but also doesn’t feel fully understood by her either. Angustias has a hard time in this story, because she doesn’t feel like anyone is on her side. How does the character overcome those challenges? Angustias changes throughout the play—I won’t give away too much, but in some ways, Angustias is redeemed from all of her bitterness at the end of the play when her sisters discover how they have wronged her. While Angustias behaved more out of spite at the top of the show, she begins to genuinely ask for help, advice, and empathy at the end of the play. Angustias overcomes her challenges of alienation towards the end of the play when she risks being judged by her mother and sisters by being more vulnerable, and seeking to find the truth, even if she gets hurt in the end. Any other comments? I hope that this play helps audience members to be thankful for the people in life who love them, to hold them close, and to try to understand each other instead of being blinded by individual desires. Why not work together? Why not be a team and create something beautiful? Life is too short not to make the most of it every day. Thank you so much for your time!
Mia Park
11/13/2017