Pete is in “the Zone.”

article by Jen Bush

Peter Feliz’s  fertile imagination as a child was an ideal steppingstone into acting.  Now when interpreting tried and true roles that he plays, he thinks way outside the box.  There might not even be a box anymore.  “As a child I pretended to be Zorro, Superman, the Wolfman, Frankenstein’s Monster and as I became an actor I found it was more fun to pretend to be Sgt. Garcia, Perry White, Ygor, and whole host of characters of my own imagination and beyond. Now I find myself enjoying experimenting with well-established roles. So instead of approaching Petruchio as rakish knee slapping Gene Kelly I approached Petruchio as a single minded deadpan Buster Keaton completely oblivious to Kate’s shrewishness.”

Most kids watch Saturday morning cartoons while eating a gigantic bowl of sugar laden cereal.  Mr. Feliz  was at confession praying he wouldn’t be transported to the corn field in the blink of an eye.  It was nostalgia and the opportunity to tip the hat to many fine actors who graced The Twilight Zone with their talents that drew Mr. to this play. “Of all the cast members (and show personnel)I am old enough to have seen most of the TWILIGHT ZONE episodes when they first aired! Every Friday night. It often scared me enough to go to confession every Saturday, in case I was eaten by big headed aliens, terrorized by a gremlin, killed by a mind reading six-year-old boy, a ventriloquist’s dummy, a doll or the Devil himself before Sunday.  In short this show is therapeutic for me. Also this is a wonderful opportunity to pay homage to character acting greats like Edward Arnold, Edward Andrews,  Ed Begley Sr, John Fielder, and Stanley Adams.”

Mr. Feliz has a sound rationale for why authors like Rod Serling and Rollin Jewett couch deep messages in macabre works.  “Rod Sterling admitted using the Horror/Fantasy genre to dodge the network censors in his examinations of deeper themes like racism, religious and political paranoia and even child abuse.  While the censors were looking for dirty words, sex, and moral mayhem, Sterling was able to serve up bucket loads of social/moral mayhem disguised as aliens, talking puppets and gremlins.”

Some people like being scared.  They watch loads or horror movies or visit all the haunted houses they can at Halloween time.  “It’s like being on a roller coaster, You get to have a near death experience and then eat a corn dog. Or perhaps rightly or wrongly to learn how to survive the unimaginable in our own lives.” 

Mr. Feliz’s acting style to bring this macabre character to life calls upon using deep dark emotions and using the works of experts in the field or horror and death.  “Screenwriting Guru Robert McKee says the Horror genre is about our fears of pain and dying. So my “acting style” is a result of extreme life & death choices: my wants, my needs and the obstacles to them. And my choices must be hyperactive. I’m finding an unhealthy adherence to the first three of Kubla-Ross’s 5 stages of dying (Denial, Anger, Bargaining) are producing great on me. And what Jackson is doing is even more evocative.”

Mr. Feliz  is not sure what’s next for him but I’d say stand-up comedy would be a natural progression based on these interview answers.  “What’s next for me? Gee, I don’t know. You got anything Jay?”

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