John Douglas Thompson Plays Satchmo At The Waldorf

Take a inside look at the actor & the musician.

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John Douglas Thompson.
Photo:Chion Wolf
Colin McEnroe.
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John Douglas Thompson.
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Colin McEnroe & John Douglas Thompson at Faith Middleton's studio in New Haven.
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John Douglas Thompson.
Photo:Chion Wolf
John Douglas Thompson Plays Satchmo At The Waldorf
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John Douglas Thompson Plays Satchmo At The Waldorf

My first interview about Shakespeare was the British actor, Kenneth Haigh, an adventure that turned into something out of the movie, "My Favorite Year", but that's a story for another day. The point is, Haigh was performing at the old Stratford Shakespeare Theater, just a ways down the road from where we sit today in New Haven, and he was doing Shakespeare in true repertory, which meant that on any given night, he would either be Prospero, Brutus, or Malvolio, depending on which of the three plays was up in the rotation. He assured me that he usually didn't find out until he arrived at the dressing room to see which costume had been laid out.

I saw him do Prospero, he was superb! But in that way, classical acting can be like kind of a muscle, if you get it in shape, you can just let fly. For today's guest, John Douglas Thompson, it's also something way, way deeper.

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