Ah, yes, the lowly PA. Before she rose to prominence as a PA for A Perfect You, Laura Kruse was an actress and community organizer. She played an excellent Henrietta Hinnershitz in Marriage Expo(sé). Appropriately ditzy. I’ve loved her ever since. I keep hoping I’ll write another appropriately ditzy part for her. I’m sure I will. The thing about Laura is that she is incredibly busy. Every single response from her in this interview began with, “Oh, Sue, I’m so sorry it took me so long to get back to you.” And it did usually take a couple of months, but I finally wrang it out of her. (I don’t think wrang is a word because the spell checker is taking issue, but this is the modern world and the Internet and you can do anything you want now and if you screw up someone will come along and fix your mess. Or at least nag you so much you’ll fix it yourself. We’ll see what happens.)
Sue: Laura, how did we meet?
Laura: How did we meet? I’m pretty sure we officially met last year during Marriage Expo(sé). We seemed to have hit it off right from the start (at least in my mind ha)…My being so impressed with your acting and improv skills, and your perhaps being equally impressed with my hairdo, outfit, dance moves, and my ability to hog the spotlight 🙂
Sue: I totally loved your character. She was such a great combination of ditz and sleaze. I loved what you did with that. So much more than what was written.
Where did the great last name come from?
Laura: Henrietta needed a strong last name and I thought it had a great ring to it. It just flows off your tongue…say it with me…Henrietta Hinnershitz. She was very proud of her name and lived up to it. A fascinating note: Her initials HH (or H squared is the chemical element of hydrogen) and Henrietta was full of alot of hot air and gas 🙂
Sue: She certainly was full of it. I loved it. I love the connection to Hydrogen. I feel I must say (because I spent thousands of dollars to get a degree in chemistry) that it’s not H squared. It’s H with a subscript of two. But you’re right; it’s double H. Two hydrogens bonded by covalency. I can’t believe I’m finally getting my money’s worth. Thank you Laura for bringing it up.
And Hinnershistz is so appropriate for PA Dutch country.
But actually I was asking about Kruse. It’s such a cool name. What nationality is that?
Laura: Oh, I must have been channeling Henrietta..ha! Wow…a chemist…who knew? Talented and smart! Glad I was able to dust off the cob webs and put your degree to use! Small world…my dad is a retired chemist 🙂 Thanks for the ‘props’ with my last name. It’s German. The little that I’ve read said that the family name branched out and some became Barons. So, I’m going to ride that wave until I check Ancestry.com one of these years. I always have to spell it though, nobody gets it right the first time around.
Sue: Nobility! How cool. So, uh, where were your ancestors when Marie Antoinette was having cake with the commoners? I suppose they were safe in Germany under the thumb of the Hapsburgs or some such.
But enough about you. Where’ve you been acting around town?
Laura: As far as acting is concerned, I’ve been in shows with the following organizations: Genesius Theatre, Reading Theatre Project, Fall Festival of the Arts.
Sue: What else do you do in your life?
Laura: I am the Director of Reading Area Community College’s Upward Bound Program. We work with 9th-12th graders in the Reading School District helping them pursue their goals to attend college. I sing with the Berkshire Chorale & with my church band. I enjoy traveling in my spare time (which is pretty much non existent right now…I need to work on that!) and going to the shore when I can.
Sue: The Shore. Nice. Do you have a beach house? Where do you go? Can I come?
Laura: Sorry so late getting back to you Sue…been out of town and then swamped at work!
Interjection by Sue: I’m leaving that line in just so you can see how preposterously difficult, how absolutely onerous, this interview has been.
Laura (continues) ……We used to go for a week’s summer vacation to Seaside Heights growing up and I always looked forward to it! I have friends that live at the shore or who had a home there that I could visit (Ocean Grove, Stone Harbor, Cape May, Ocean City). Unfortunately, I don’t get there as often as I would like. I need a job with summers off! It would be fun to go together!
Sue: My friend has a house in Point Pleasant, but her family rents it out in summer. It’s not always easy to get there. Next time we go, though, I’ll let you know, maybe you can come too.
Laura: Sounds nice…keep me posted 🙂
Sue: So wrapping it up: What’s next theater-wise, for you?
Laura: I don’t know… I would love to be part of a show again! I’m keeping an eye out for auditions and shows. It’s all about timing as well. I learned alot about the behind the scenes with the filming of ‘A Perfect Day’ and that was really interesting! So, hopefully, something will come up either on or off stage. It’s great to spend time with people who have the same passion and interest. So, I’m Iooking forward to what’s around the corner,and of course, working with you again Sue 🙂 !
Sue: Well, I’m writing Reading Theater Project’s next piece. We’ll see what happens with that. And we’re shooting a web series now, with all sorts of weird stories. I’m sure there’ll be something ditzy and sleazy for Laura.