Meet the cast: John Skelley of 'The Glass Menagerie'

by John Moore | Sep 09, 2016

John Skelley, right, in rehearsal for the DCPA Theatre Company's 'The Glass Menagerie.' Photo by John Moore for the DCPA NewsCenter.

Jim O’Connor, The Gentleman Caller in The Glass Menagerie

At the Theatre Company: Debut. Off-Broadway: The Changeling (Red Bull Theater); Desire (59E59/The Acting Company); Hamlet (as Hamlet), Rosencrantz and Guildenstern Are Dead, The Comedy of Errors, Romeo and Juliet (The Acting Company). Regional credits include: 15 productions at The Guthrie Theater including Long Day's Journey into Night, Hay Fever, The Importance of Being Earnest and Macbeth; Art, And a Nightingale Sang (Westport Country Playhouse); An Inspector Calls (Pioneer Theatre Company); Desire (NY Stage and Film); Tribes (Florida Repertory Theatre). TV/Film: "Elementary," Into Temptation.

  • Hometown: Eden Prairie, Minn. 
  • Training:  BFA from University of Minnesota/Guthrie Theater Actor Training Program
  • What was the role that changed your life? Playing Young Jacob Marley and The Gravedigger in The Guthrie Theater’s production of A Christmas Carol in 2008. That's where I met my wife, actress Maren Searle.
  • Why are you an actor? I love the ability of the theater to transform our collective consciousness. The ritual of people listening to a story together, sharing a live experience, is extremely powerful. It’s exciting to be a part of that every night.
  • What would you be doing for a career if you weren’t an actor? I have no idea really. It would definitely be something creative. I always wanted to be an illustrator and visual artist growing up. I was always drawing and doodling, and even today my notebooks and scripts are filled with cartoons and caricatures. 
  • A Mark RylanceIdeal scene partner: I’d love to work with Mark Rylance or Cate Blanchett. They have such a spirit of playfulness and generosity when they act, and their technical skills are incredible. I’d play a tree if it meant being able to watch how they work and learn from them.
  • Why does this production of The Glass Menagerie matter? Because it is simply one of the best plays ever written. The dialogue is exquisite. The poetry is divine. It is probably Tennessee William’s most autobiographical play, and by being so personal, the play becomes universal. Like most great plays, it’s about our struggle to connect with one another. 
  • What do you hope the audience gets out of it? The Wingfields love each other deeply, and it’s what makes their journeys in this play so difficult. I hope audiences will see themselves in these characters and will fall in love with them too.
  • Finish this sentence: "All I want is ..."
    "... happiness for you and me."
Learn more about John Skelley at and follow him on Twitter @jmskelley

More Colorado theatre coverage on the DCPA NewsCenter

The Glass Menagerie: Ticket information
• Sept. 9-Oct. 16
• Ricketson Theatre
• ASL interpreted, Audio-described and Open Captioned performance: Oct. 15
• Tickets: 303-893-4100 or BUY ONLINE
• Groups: Call 303-446-4829

Selected previous NewsCenter coverage of The Glass Menagerie:

2016-17 season: Nine shows, two world premieres, return to classics
Kent Thompson on The Bard, The Creature and the soul of his audience
Casting set for The Glass Menagerie
First rehearsal: This will be no wimpy Glass Menagerie
The Glass Menagerie: A modern visual twist on an American classic
Meet the cast: Amelia Pedlow

Additional The Glass Menagerie photos:

'The Glass Menagerie' in Denver

Photos from the making of 'The Glass Menagerie' in Denver. To see more, click the forward arrow on the image above.

Follow the DCPA on social media @DenverCenter and through the DCPA News Center.

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John Moore
John Moore
Award-winning arts journalist John Moore has recently taken a groundbreaking new position as the DCPA’s Senior Arts Journalist. With The Denver Post, he was named one of the 12 most influential theater critics in the US by American Theatre Magazine. He is the founder of the Denver Actors Fund, a nonprofit that raises money for local artists in medical need. John is a native of Arvada and attended Regis Jesuit High School and the University of Colorado at Boulder. Follow him on Twitter @moorejohn.

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