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Interview with Jacob Caltrider – A San Diego Theatre kid takes the stage

Somehow, against all the odds, I have  a post that combines my theme from last week – youth in theatre in San Diego, and combines it with what I wrote about yesterday, the CygNext Tweet Night at the Cygnet Theatre this Friday, April 11th!  So before my luck runs out and I start babbling inanely (too late), here is a chat with the amazing Jacob Caltrider who is currently performing in Cygnet Theatre’s SPRING AWAKENING.

Jacob takes his tweeting very seriously...and so should you!
Jacob takes his tweeting very seriously…and so should you!

Jacob Caltrider is no stranger to the San Diego theatre stages. Having grown up in Escondido, his love for performing led him started when he was a kid and led him to performing at the Cygnet Theatre, the NorthCoast repertory Theatre, Lamb’s Players, diversionary and more! Currently he can be seen playing Hanshen in Cygnet Theatre’s SPRING AWAKENING playing March 6th through April 27th.

Usually the dream job that you have as a teenager is not the one you have as an adult. Luckily, Jacob found his passion on stage when he was a kid and never looked back. “When I was 13, I spent a lot of time at home doing a lot of nothing. My mom saw an ad in the paper for auditions at a local community theatre for THE WIZARD OF OZ and asked if it was something I might be interested in. I auditioned, was cast as the Scarecrow, and after that I just never stopped.”

SPRING AWAKENING is a show that covers a huge range of topics, from the humorous to the dramatic, that are not always approached in a standard musical. But that seems to be one of the key features that drew Jacob to this project. “I was familiar with the show, though I’d only seen one local production of it a few years back. I always thought the show was really unique, and I knew that it would be a great piece for Cygnet to produce – so when we announced it, I was very excited.”

“I play Hanschen. I love that he’s got some really comedic moments in the show, and also has such a strong sense of who he is and how to get what he wants. I’d say the most challenging aspect was to create my version of Hanschen. When you have these kinds of characters in a show this popular, it’s easy to play that sort of cookie-cutter that has been established by the original production or to ‘play the laugh lines.’ What’s great about our show is that we’ve all been able to stray from the confines of what people expect from it, while also keeping it grounded and honest.”

Having performed at the Cygnet as Oswald/Balladeer in ASSASINS, a soldier in PARADE, and even a puppeteerfor a certain plant in LITTLE SHOP OF HORRORS , Jacob is very comfortable on the Cygnet stage. “I started at Cygnet by being cast in A CHRISTMAS CAROL in 2008 (as the theatre was going through a huge renovation) and shortly after, moved to North Park and was hired on as the Artistic Assistant. I’ve since performed in several of their productions and have become a proud Resident Artist.”

Jacob has pursued his dream job in acting, and has performed all over San Diego in roles from kids to killers, are there any dream roles that he has that he wants to go after?
“Is it weird that right now I don’t have a ‘dream role?’ I’m willing to give anything a shot.”

So keep your eyes open for him, who knows what role he will turn up in next?    Twitter, the answer is Twitter.  You can follow him as he tweets from the show Friday April 1th!

Jacob is currently performing in SPRING AWAKENING at the Cygnet Theatre March 6 – April 27, 2014. Show times are Wednesdays and Thursdays at 7:30 pm, Fridays at 8pm, Saturdays at 3pm and 8pm, and Sundays at 2pm and 7pm.
Tickets can be purchased by visiting Cygnet’s website at or by calling the box office at 619-337-1525. Cygnet’s box office and theatre are located at the Old Town Theatre, 4040 Twiggs St. in Old Town San Diego State Historic Park.

Photo Credit: Cygnet Theatre


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