On the Scene with Braddoc DeCaires
Braddoc DeCaires’ next big project is Manoa Valley Theatre’s summer production of “The Rocky Horror Show,” which opens July 18.
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Braddoc DeCaires grew up a latchkey kid who watched a lot of television and enjoyed going to movies. He discovered theater when he was a student at Maryknoll School and it stuck. When he went on to Chapman University in Orange, Calif., he took theater classes while earning a communications degree in film and television production. Then, with degree in hand, he landed a “dream job” as a post-production coordinator at Steven Spielberg’s DreamWorks Studios. The dream ended when the show he was working on was canceled. DeCaires decided to come home.
Back in Hawaii he reconnected with the theater and built his resume as an actor and volunteer. The years of commitment paid off. In May 2017, DeCaires, 48, was appointed production manager/technical assistant at Manoa Valley Theatre.
His next big project is MVT’s summer production of “The Rocky Horror Show,” which opens July 18.
What got you interested in theater?
My English teacher (at Maryknoll) also did the drama program after school. I was getting, maybe, a B in her class, and she gave me the script for this old musical called “Good News” and said, “If you do the play you’ll get an A.” I did, and it started from there. I felt like I’d found my tribe.
What has been one of your most memorable experiences in the theater?
When I auditioned for “Fiddler on the Roof” at Army Community Theatre (in 1999), I sang Motel the tailor’s song, “Miracle of Miracles.” It was the first time I’d sung in front of an audience, and I flubbed the lines, and they thought I did that on purpose. They were laughing, and I was thinking, “If they think it’s good, let’s go with that.” They cast me as Motel and it was a great experience. I learned a lot from (director) Glenn Cannon and (musical director) Lina (Jeong Doo). They were two of my heroes.
Many roles later, do you have a favorite?
When we did “Hair” at Manoa Valley Theatre in 2010 I played the role of Margaret Mead. I came up with this character that was part my mom and part like Eve Arden, ‘cause I love my old movies, and Rob Duval was the director and he let me go (with it). I had a fur coat on, and I flashed the audience and then flashed the cast. The whole house just roared. I’d been using a high voice (in character), and then when I gave them my voice of what I sound like as a man — but with a New York taxicab driver accent — that got even more of a laugh.
What’s one of the biggest challenges you’ve had to handle as production manager at MVT?
One of the biggest recently was during “Tony n’ Tina’s Wedding.” Our Tina, Aimee Nelson, had to take two nights off for a family emergency, so Anette Arinix, who played Celeste Marie Romano, was moved into the role of Tina and then we had to find someone who could sing Anette’s big song for two nights while she played Tina.
What can we look forward to with “The Rocky Horror Show” (opens July 18)?
We have a very cool cast and a very diverse cast which I’m very happy about. We actually have an African American Frank, and we have an African American Rocky as well, so it adds a whole new layer to the whole thing. I’m liking that the shows that we’ve done recently have a lot of diversity in the casts.
What do you like to do outside of theater?
I’m a huge movie buff. I also do a lot of creative writing. I’m working on the outline right now for a play and I’m hoping to shop it around to see if anybody would do it. It’s a play about theater.