Hawkins comes to grips with on-stage jug­gling act

Western Suburbs Weekly - - Stage - Sara Fitz­patrick

LEARN­ING lines was a cinch for Sean Hawkins in his lat­est stage pro­duc­tion.

It was tak­ing on seven char­ac­ters, three ac­cents and a whole load of prop work, in­volv­ing scarves, hats, canes and more, that re­ally put his tal­ents (and pa­tience) to the test.

“With this play, I have to think ‘OK, if I spin here, my sun­glasses need to come out of my pocket for that next change and I need to get the cane for the next char­ac­ter’,” Hawkins said.

“‘And the scarf goes on there, great, and then the scarf goes off and my cap goes back on, so where do I put the scarf?

OK – in my pocket’.

“So there is a lot of nitty-gritty stuff.

“The ac­cents are hard too.

“Most of my char­ac­ters are from Dublin, Kerry (which is in South Ire­land) or the USA.”

The Perth-born, Syd­ney-based ac­tor shares 15 roles – in­clud­ing women – with ac­tor Grant Cartwright (Five Kinds of Si­lence) in multi award-win­ning com­edy Stones in his Pock­ets.

Their main roles com­prise cheeky Ir­ish lads Char­lie and Jack

look­ing for a fu­ture on the sil­ver screen.

With so much on their plates, it’s easy to imag­ine mishaps hap- pen­ing along the way.

“The other day, I ran on stage and called the char­ac­ter by the wrong name – the au­di­ence will for­give you be­cause they can see you’re try­ing to re­mem­ber who you are talk­ing to,” Hawkins said.

“Most of the time, it’s just props get­ting caught, which is funny – like Grant get­ting a head scarf sud­denly wrapped around his face so he looks ridicu­lous.

“The mis­takes can be­come part of the show; the au­di­ence is aware we are per­form­ing and it’s very in­ter­ac­tive.”

Grad­u­at­ing from WAAPA in 2009, Hawkins has ap­peared with Bell Shake­speare in Much Ado About Noth­ing (2011) and Ac­tors at Work (2010), as well as Howie the Rookie (2016) with Red Line Pro­duc­tions.

“I didn’t do act­ing at school. I left and thought about what I’d like to do and I didn’t have any firm plans,” he said.

“I al­ways wanted to give act­ing a go and I did a short course and was lucky enough to get into WAAPA and went from there and it has been 11 years now work­ing in Syd­ney on and off.”

Grant Cartwright and Sean Hawkins.

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