Sitting Down with Keiko Green—Bad Apples

Cati Thelen sits down with Keiko Green, ACT Core Company Member, who is currently in Bad Apples as Lt. Lindsay Scott.

How has the character of Lindsay Scott resonated with you?

This is probably the most unlike me character I’ve played in the last few years, so it’s been pretty difficult.  It’s been hard to relate to her in so many ways. Just physically, she has been climbing the ladder of the army. It’s been really hard to tap into who she is. I’ve had to go back to doing college exercises just to figure out how I can convey her into myself.

But, there is something in her though. She’s powerful. What I’ve tapped into her character, in the end, is that we can’t judge people when they are thrown into these intense situations because we don’t know what was going through their mind. What happened there was terrible. Seeing the photos of Fallujah, these people, basically these kids signing up for the Guard. Usually, not wanting to fight in a war, they were sent out with more responsibility than they had. Sending them out to fight and not necessarily having the skills. Also, for them being stuck in 120 degree weather and then ordered to get this information and interrogate these civilians. As an actor, you always want to justify what you are doing and it’s surprising to see what I would do if I was in this situation. With all of this, it’s been hard to say, “What would I have done?”

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Bad Apples. Photo by Jeff Carpenter

As an ensemble, how has it been to work in such a large group?

What’s neat about this group is that it’s a weird hodgepodge of artists. We have two actors from L.A., one person who just moved back to Seattle, actors who have been working more in Seattle within the musical theatre world, and then there’s me who just does strict theatre. It’s been awesome to work with people who you essentially didn’t know until the rehearsal process started.

The show moves so quickly and with the music element and short scenes, everyone is called all the time. Throughout the rehearsal and tech rehearsals, we are here at the theatre all the time. It’s been a great group! We have been game for a lot of intense material.

Do you feel like the musical aspect is going to drive audience members to the show?

I think that the music is so good! So, so good. I hope it brings people in! I think there is a misconception about Bad Apples that there is going to be a lot of torture on stage. I was recently talking to John Langs about the real story of the play. It’s about relationships.

This musical is definitely pushing a lot of boundaries. The subject matter in itself has called for a lot of attention.

The music is also not “musically”. It ranges in style. There are songs that sound more like Beastie Boys and then we have songs that are more indie rock.

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Bad Apples. Photo by Jeff Carpenter

Speaking of singing, how do you get prepared for a musical?

I usually just do strict theatre, so this is a new genre for me. I had three songs in Stupid Fucking Bird. It wasn’t like I had to sing well for that since it wasn’t the emphasis of me being a good singer. I had a ukulele. After performing and singing eight shows a week, it helped strengthen my vocal chords. It’s just about strengthening and building those muscles! Even during the casting process, it never went away. You just have to keep strengthening. It’s a totally different experience though with Bad Apples. In this show, I have a mic and so you don’t have to project as much.

To get to know you a little bit better, what are some things that people don’t know about you?

I love visual art. I actually illustrated a children’s book about mourning the loss of a parent. I have double-jointed thumbs. I am bi-lingual (English & Japanese).

Bad Apples runs now through Sep 25 as part of ACTLab. Tickets and info.

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