Introducing: Kenton Klassen

Get to know actor, Kenton Klassen, of The Stonewater Rapture. Kenton was an apprentice at Pacific Theatre for their 2013/2014 season and has partnered with 2014/2015 season apprentice, Kayla Heselwood, to mount Doug Wright’s play about bullying, sexuality, and religion – a play he is quite passionate about.

During Kenton’s time as an apprentice at Pacific Theatre he had the opportunity to perform in Gruesome Playground Injuries with actor Pippa Johnstone and was directed by Jessie award winner, Chelsea Haberlin of ITSAZOO Productions. You can see Kenton on the Pacific Theatre stage again in 2016 as the three will remount the production for Pacific Theatre’s 2015/2016 season.

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The Stonewater Rapture Questions

Tell us about your theatre background:
I have always had a fascination with story telling. Growing up I attended schools with great performing arts programs and had some very influential teachers. I performed at Keyano Theatre and studied acting at Keyano College for a short while after high school. In 2010 I moved to Vancouver for the B.F.A. Acting program at the University of British Columbia where I studied and performed for three years. After that I did an Apprenticeship with Pacific Theatre which has introduced me to a whole network of friends, artists, and opportunities. Some favourite credits include Trainspotting (Rumble Theatre), The Duchess a.k.a. Wallis Simpson, Rhinoceros (UBC), The Rainmaker, Old Time Gospel Radio Hour, The Seafarer (Pacific Theatre), and Gruesome playground Injuries which is being remounted next year.

What do you love most about Doug Wright’s The Stonewater Rapture?
The writing is superb. I love the honesty between Whitney and Carlyle. I love the trust they have in each other to share their deepest and darkest secrets. I love how the play asks very hard questions about growing up, religion and sexuality. I love the terrible/beautiful feeling in my guts each time I finish reading through it.

Do you relate to your character? If so, in what way?
I grew up as a pastors kid just like he did, which comes with a whole mixed bag of things. Lots of the growing up high school stuff, so much of the text sounds exactly like things I’ve heard or said in high school. Those teenage out of control hormones and crazy first kiss moments. The Christian values and rules around sex and the frustration that comes with that. The candid quality of conversation between Whitney and Carlyle is very familiar to me.

What do you hope audiences will take away from this play?
A good belly laugh, some wide eyes, a couple shakes of the head, and some pensive eyebrows.

Personal Questionnaire

What is your favorite word? Lush

What is your least favorite word? Starts with a c and ends in a t.

When you’re not doing theatre, what do you spend your time on? Reading and watching movies.

What turns you on creatively, emotionally, and spiritually? When people get real, 3 am conversations, Nature.

What turns you off in these ways? Fear of the future, apathy, rules.

What is your favourite play? Hmm..  I can’t do one. Here’s three: Danny and the Deep Blue Sea – John Patrick Shanley; Curse of the Starving Class – Sam Shepard; Gruesome Playground Injuries – Rajiv Joseph

If you could go on a road trip with anyone (dead or alive) who would you go with, and where would you go? Anna Kendrick, Eurotrip.

What sound or noise do you love? Camp Fire.

What sound or noise do you hate? Whatever is on the play list at Earls.

What is your favorite curse word? Fuck.

If you were stranded on a desert island for 10 years, what three things would you want with you? Guitar, Surfboard.. Netflix.

Do you believe in aliens? I don’t not believe in aliens.

What is your favourite book? The Lord of the Rings

What is your favourite movie? Magnolia

What profession did you wish for as a child? Author

What profession other than your own would you like to attempt? Fireman

What profession would you not like to do? Accountant

What is something people may not know about you? All of my socks get holes in the heels.. and I can’t make them stop.

What is one of your pet peeves? John Voth keeps leaving this damn pine cone in my bed.

If heaven exists, what would you like to hear God say when you arrive at the pearly gates? I’ve got someone who wants to meet you.