Company Profiles: Mary Werntz

This is the ninth in a series of posts profiling our company members — get to know the Synetic family of actors. I sent a few questions out to some company members, and their responses, as well as some info on the actor, can be found in this series. Enjoy!

Mary Werntz

Mary Werntz

Mary Werntz has been a company member of Synetic since 2008. She has performed in the ensemble in Carmen, Dante, and A Midsummer Night’s Dream, as Lucy in Dracula, and as Octavia in our current production, Antony and Cleopatra.

Where are you from?  What is your background? I grew up in Akron Ohio doing gymnastics and rhythmic gymnastics as a kid.  I also took acting classes because my mom was always taking me to the theater and I was mesmerized by that world.  But I was very shy (still am, minus the very), so the acting classes were quite challenging, though I did enjoy them.  I did one summer of classical ballet, but found it to be boring (shame on me) and opted for tap and jazz throughout high school.  I never thought I would study dance further until I discovered the art form of concert dance in college.  I was hooked.  I spent all my time reading everything I could about it, going to concerts and changed my major and enrolled in a school that was ballet based so that I could get the foundation of that classical training.  Back to ballet I went and with enthusiasm this time around!  That training allowed for me to have a varied career as a dancer – doing operas, musical theater, working on cruise ships, and traveling the world with the USO.  But I most enjoyed modern dance, especially the collaborative creative process, and bringing an emotional life to movement.  I lived in NYC and performed with a physical theater company there. I figured I would forget about all of that when I moved to Maryland with my husband a few years back. That all changed when I auditioned for Synetic in March of 2008.  Finding this company felt like finding a long lost family.  It is a perfect blend of all the things I love.  I’m very happy here.

With Roger Payano in "Dracula" (photo credit Graeme B. Shaw)

Holy Smokes!

How is Synetic different from other experiences? It is rare to find a company that works in this manner – training its actors and building an ensemble. Even after 2 years, I still feel I am only skimming the surface of all there is to learn.  The physical nature of the work and the focus on the musical element are both very gratifying aspects for me. I almost always approach acting by finding the emotional connection rather than a through a cerebral analysis.  Paata will often direct us to listen to the music and allow it to dictate our actions and the qualities of a scene and there’s no way that will work if you think too much about it.   And I really love the ensemble work.  It can be very meditative – to tune into the group and move together as one.

As the fortuneteller in "Dante" (photo credit Raymond Gniewek)

As the fortuneteller in "Dante" (photo credit Raymond Gniewek)

Do you have a favorite role/show? It is very difficult to choose a favorite, but I pick “Carmen”.  It was my first show, the cast was wonderful and I loved all the dancing.

Do you have any crazy stories from rehearsals or shows? No stories to share, instead I offer the following tally.  In Synetic shows, I have: given birth twice (Dante-to a demon child, MSND-to Puck), been bitten to death twice (Dante – Ugolino, Dracula-Dracula), been shot in the head three times -once at my own hand (Dante). And the sex – on a cage (Carmen), an orgy (Dante), ending in death (Dracula).  Phew.  Is this stuff legal?


~ by synetictheater on February 19, 2010.

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