All this week, the Livingston Post will be profiling cast members of the Howell High School Performing Arts Department’s production of “The Dining Room.”
Danny Maura, 18, is a senior at Howell High School. He is the son of Stacey Maura and Romolo Maura, and he has a brother, Ryan Maura. He is in four choirs: A Capella, Men’s Varsity (in which he student-conducts), Highlander Chorale, and Calamity (of which he is the captain). He is also the International Thespian Society Vice President, and the Drama Co-Collar. His hobbies include video games and streaming, and he plans to become a music teacher.
The Livingston Post asked him a few questions:
How did you get involved with the production?
I have been doing shows with Howell High School since sophomore year. It was only logical in my mind that I was going to do “The Dining Room” since I have had the most fun of my life in those previous productions.
Have you been in any other theatrical productions? If so, what roles did you play?
I have been in six theatrical productions before “The Dining Room,” only one of which not being at Howell High School. My first role was Baron Bomburst in Parker Middle School’s “Chitty Chitty Bang Bang,” and then, in sophomore year of high school, I played Sir Toby Belch in “12th Night” and Nicely Nicely Johnson in “Guys & Dolls.” Then, in junior year, I played Alf in “Peter and the Starcatcher,” and Albert in “The Secret Garden.”
What do you most enjoy about being part of the production?
Honestly, getting to know the cast and, through that, discovering new ways to explore your character and relationships with other characters is such a magical thing that I could not say it is the most enjoyable thing.
Who is/are your inspiration(s)? Why?
Well, theatrically, I always looked up to Ben Dean, a 2019-2020 graduate of Howell High School. He was always somebody I looked at and just said, “Wow, that’s exactly what I want to be.” He just always seemed to get it, and I wanted to be like that. In general, I look up to our school’s accompanist, Mr. Brody. He is young, and not only did he continue doing what he loved throughout college, but he is still doing it while working with music. It just showed me that I could do what I loved as a job.
What’s your favorite part of the experience of being in the production?
The first time we do a full run-through of the show in costume and make up and the whole shebang. Seeing everything come together, and seeing the scenes flow into each other and everybody working together just always takes my breath away.
What can audience members expect when they see the show?
Normally, I could say, “Oh, well the play is about blah blah blah…” but with this production, it is a little different. If you come see “The Dining Room,” you can expect to see many different stories with many different characters that somehow tie together in some way.
The Howell High School Performing Arts Department presents “The Dining Room” March 18-21, 2021. The production will be presented at 7 p.m. on March 18-20 and at 2 p.m. on March 21. There will also be a live-streamed performance at 1 p.m. Saturday, March 20. Seating is limited to 150 patrons per show, with assigned seats. Tickets are available online at http://bit.ly/2ZGF1HK.