Meet the Liar

An Interview with Jeremy Kahn by Jade Shojaee

Born and raised in Oakland, California, Jeremy Kahn has taken the Bay Area theatre scene by storm armed with unparalleled acting chops, an extensive resume and a B.A. from the Theatre School at DePaul University in Chicago.

In anticipation of Center REP’s opening of The Liar, DRAA interviewed Jeremy, who plays the title role, about his acting career, his experience working with Michael Butler, and why the arts matter to him.

Bonus: Watch Jeremy’s hysterical acting tutorial (at the bottom of the page) for acting tips on making sad faces! You never know when this could come in handy…

 

Tell us about the show! What can audiences look forward to?

It’s all pretty silly. Silly in the best way possible. The play is athletic, fast, and relentlessly witty. The plot is relatively simple, but full of misunderstandings, secrets and love at first sight. Prepare yourself to laugh. Prepare yourself to think. I’m pretty confident you won’t cry.

What’s it like to work with Artistic Director, Michael Butler?
This is the second time I’ve had the privilege. I knew before the first time that actors love working for Michael. He’s legendary for being a true actors’ director. And I understand why. Michael creates a culture of openness in the room that’s pretty amazing. He trusts actors. He’s always open to letting an actor explore any idea they have. And he’s the master of gently guiding you away from a choice that isn’t serving the story.

How did you decide to become an actor?
I’ve kind of never done anything else. There wasn’t a moment where I said, “Oh yeah, I’m going to do this for the rest of my life.” Like so many people I did theatre in high school. I decided to go to a conservatory acting program instead of a more traditional college experience. After graduating, I did a play, which lead to another, and another, and here I am 10 years later. I don’t know that I’m qualified to do anything else at this point.

Tell us how you came to become a member of the Actor’s Equity Association? 
I was a few years out of acting school. I’d been doing some regional theatre and became a member of the ensemble of a little theatre in Chicago, but still paid my bills by working at a restaurant. One day at the end of a long shift I got a phone call with an offer to come do a play called Another Way Home at The Magic in SF. The role would have to be played by an Equity actor, so to accept the part I would need to join the union. I gave notice at the restaurant that night and haven’t had a day job since.

Why do you believe theatre and the arts are important?

Look, people have been putting on plays for thousands of years. There’s never been a civilization in all of humanity that didn’t make art and tell stories. Sadly, we live in a society that doesn’t always appreciate the power and necessity of the arts. Lucky we have organizations like the DRAA that have made it their mission to bolster empathy and creativity in all of us. There are a lot of people in the world hurting right now. I hope the work of play making can begin the kind of thinking and dialogue that will bring us all back together and restore people’s faith in humanity.

 

Click here for more information about The Liar and check out Jeremy’s acting tutorial below!