"The play is about the changing dynamics of power in groups” - Meet DNA's Richard and John Tate
Dejhaun Abono Lahera (John Tate) and Peter Harrison (Richard) delve into their characters for The Young REP's dramatic production of Dennis Kelly's DNA.
Dehjaun: John Tate is a typical alpha male, he becomes the natural leader of the group during the crisis. For me, the play is about the changing dynamics of power in groups. This makes him an ideal initial holder of power in the play.
Peter: And I guess that's where Richard comes in, because I think he presents the first challenge to John Tate's power.
Dehjaun: Yeah but Richard fails to remain high status the group because of his relationship with John. With John, his attempts to stand up for himself just come across as defensive. He's high status to Lou and Dani, but not to John Tate.
Peter: I think his defensive-ness is to some extent because he wants to raise his position in the group too. It just doesn't come out the way he wishes. However, I do think that when he challenges things it's because he feels that something doesn't make sense and needs to be questioned. Not because he is being tactical or anything.
Dehjaun: Yeah, I don't think John Tate is tactical but just good in the moment. His need to control the group is about feeling secure. He's built up an empire and needs it to stay safe. Even though he keeps it together in the moment, it gets too much for him in the end.
Peter: I think we need three words that describe our characters.
Dehjuan: For John Tate, it's “keep the crown”.
Peter: And for Richard, it's thoughtful, frustrated and afraid.
Don't miss The Young REP in Dennis Kelly's explosive DNA from 27 Mar - 7 Apr.