YOUR NAME: Noel Ginyard
YOUR CHARACTER’S NAME: Ruth Younger
CHARACTER TRAITS: Ruth is loyal, hardworking, resilient, patient, rational, and loving.
FAVORITE LINE YOUR CHARACTER SAYS: “Well – WELL! – All I can say is – if this is my time in life – MY TIME – to say GOOD-BYE -…then I say it loud and good, HALLELUYAH! AND GOODBYE, MISERY – I DON’T NEVER WANT TO SEE YOUR UGLY FACE AGAIN!”
Had you read or seen the play before this production and if so can you share your first experience/reaction after reading/seeing the play?
I was a freshman in high school when I first read the play. I remember it very clearly. Ms. Ruyak’s ninth grade literature class – that’s when I first connected with this timeless piece. I was so impressed with the dramatic irony and situational irony. (I had also just learned those terms in class and was delighted to be able to recognize them in the text.) I fell for this play way back in ninth grade.
Why did you become interested in this production?
I remember literally gasping for air when I found out the Downtown Cabaret Theatre was going to do A RAISIN IN THE SUN! One of my favorite plays??? WHAT??? I knew back in January of 2017 that I was going to audition. The plot is so solid, and the characters are so real. I had to try to be a part of the production.
Do you share any similarities with the character you are portraying?
Ruth is a nurturer. No matter what is happening for her personally, or how she may even be feeling, she will do whatever she’s got to do to take care of the people she loves. She is patient and strong. I feel as though she and I are actually very similar. I would also do anything for the people I love – a feat which takes great patience and strength. Also, I have loved a few different versions of “Walter Lee”. I understand the complexities associated with their relationship and the challenges she faces while constantly trying to smooth everything over and “iron” out the various kinks in their lives.
This show takes on the themes of racial intolerance, the discovery of one’s culture and sacrificing for family – all themes that are still relevant in today’s world. How are you preparing to tackle these themes and what message do you want to portray to audiences?
I continuously marvel at the fact that Lorraine Hansberry was only 29 years old when she wrote this play! As I bond more with the text, I become more and more amazed at how clairvoyant she was. Sixty years later, and the themes of this piece are still strikingly poignant. My plan for tackling these themes is to embrace them all – even the uncomfortable ones – in truth. Sometimes dreams are deferred. Sometimes dreams come to reality. Sometimes racial intolerance is overt. Sometimes life isn’t fair. Sometimes adversity has a way of providing clarity. Sometimes society puts you in a box. Sometimes families have to make hard decisions. Sometimes people take off with your money and “don’t leave you no roadmaps”. Sometimes too much pressure drives people to act out of character. Sometimes there really is “a rainbow after the rain”. All of these are true. I will continue to see the raw and beautiful truth in these messages and join Ruth as she discovers it again and again. The message I want to portray to audiences is, “The fulfillment of dreams can come in different forms, and that’s okay. Just make sure that your dreams remain as grapes, not raisins.”