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THE FOSSIL RECORD: An Interview with Actor Jordan Reynosa

Q: Hello there! Tell us a little about yourself!

My name is Jordan Reynosa, I use the he series pronouns. I graduated from Westminster College ('21) with a degree in acting and a minor in dance.

Q: Have you done any other shows with us at AOTC? If so, what show(s)?

This is my first show with AOTC!

Q: What drew you to The Fossil Record? Why did you want to be involved in this production?

I was very interested the moment I read the character descriptions. I loved that the family didn't have to look like or be the same ethnicity; it made me feel like I could be cast on my ability to play the role rather than how much I look like I could be apart of the family. I think Lisa's decision to put those specifics into the script is a huge step for BIPOC, people with disabilities, and non-binary people.

I also was entirely captivated by the story the first time I read the script. I thought it was something that felt fresh and original, the characters' personalities are so distinct, the script is fast-paced and unravels almost like a mystery/thriller.

I felt like the character, Andrew, was calling out to me and I knew that this was something I would love to do and have fun doing. I knew it would be something I would be proud to be of. I also have always loved the things that AOTC does and wanted to be apart of it all.

Q: Tell us a little about your character! Who are they? What was your first impression of them after reading the script?

Andrew is a queer teenager, who also happens to be the youngest in the immediate family. He feels closest with his grandmother, Kim. He loves nerdy things like comic books. He's incredibly intelligent and he has a sturdy/stable mindset even in the worst times. My first impression of him was how funny he is, of course. I was also really struck by how mature he is and how much responsibility he takes upon himself (something I didn't have at his age).

Q: What three words would your character use to describe themselves?

Witty, grounding, hungry.

Q: How have you approached your character and their role within this story? What insights have you gained about your character through your acting process?

This is my first time being able to play an openly gay character, so it was really important to me to approach Andrew in a way that wasn't stereotyped. I wanted Andrew to be obviously open about his sexuality, but I wanted to make sure that I wasn't playing into the physical and vocal stereotypes that are often associated with gay men.

I also wanted to make sure I wasn't playing a caricature of a teenager, either. Aside from that, I discovered so much about Andrew throughout the process, things that I didn't initially know about him through my first read of the script. He's able to be focused and coordinate others in difficult situations, he has a strong sense of self as well as independence, and even though he feels his family is flawed in many ways, he cares about them deeply.

Q: What has been the biggest challenge in taking on this role? The biggest reward?

What I loved about Andrew is how multi-faceted he is in the way he reacts to events or how he acts as a person. Meaning, he's funny and is always making jokes, but that's not the only note to him in this play. On top of being gay and being a teenager in high school, he allows himself to care deeply for his family, he's emotionally open, mature, he sees the people around him for who they truly are, even if they're good at hiding it.

He has so many different aspects to him than just being the comedic-relief in the play (though that is his biggest talent) and it's not often you find a character who has all those amazing traits you can play in one script. So being able to channel and discover all of those different aspects of Andrew was definitely the biggest challenge, but also the biggest reward.

Q: What do you hope audiences will take away from this show?

In this play, every member of the family could have easily turned away from each other at any point. I think in real life most people's families aren't perfect. There are conflicts and events within a family that change the dynamic of relationships between members. I hope our audience might reflect on their dynamics that have changed and the way they think about those relationships and family members. Some people might be safer having no connection to those family members, but most conflicts are likely to be resolved through communication and vulnerability.

The reason this story (to me at least) is so compelling is because instead of turning their backs to each other and giving up, through their desire to love and support each other they become stronger as a family. They might not have truly found the light at the end of the tunnel, but they've grown to support each other and work their way through it together.

Q: What's your favorite line?

"I don't know what an Etch-a-Sketch is, but yes."

CONTENT WARNING: “The Fossil Record” contains themes and depictions that some viewers may find distressing. Visit our ticketing page to see full disclosures.

THE FOSSIL RECORD is a limited streamed production. Performances are Feb 4th through Feb 27th (four weekends) with streaming being available Thursdays-Sundays. All performance links are accessible from 6pm - Midnight for each performance. You can find your tickets here.

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