The Cherry Orchard
The Cherry Orchard, 2015. Live performance.
The Cherry Orchard by Anton Chekhov is the story of a Russian aristocratic family that returns to their childhood home during the turn of the 20th century where their lives are turned upside-down when they are unable to sustain their materialistic and wealthy status.
In the production, I played the character of Leonid Gayev, the eccentric and talkative uncle, who owns the family estate and represents the decadent aristocratic lifestyle who then is rendered helpless due to the social change in Russia. Gayev plays the part of the comedic relief through his extreme optimism, sentimentality and youthful innocence.
The most challenging aspect of preparing to play Gayev was discovering how differently he moves, talks and behaves to myself. I used the Laban technique, which is an analysis of movement used for dancers that we learn in our acting classes at Berkeley to help find Gayev’s expression through movement. The opportunity to play such an iconic character in Chekhov’s world while getting to work with industry professionals was my greatest experience at UC Berkeley.