Geoff Packard is a good friend, a songwriting buddy and an actor and singer/songwriter. His debut CD ‘Fairytales and Fortunes’, featuring a couple of our co-writes is available at iTunes. I was glad to catch him for a few minutes following his runs on Broadway in THE PHANTOM OF THE OPERA and ROCK OF AGES, in Washington, D.C. at the Ford’s Theater as Liberty in LIBERTY SMITH and in Mary Zimmerman’s production of CANDIDE (as Candide – he won the year’s ‘Best Actor in a Musical’) and at the Goodman in Chicago (where he won Chicago’s Jeff Award as ‘Best Actor in a Musical’). Next up is a return to Chicago for a run at the renowned Court Theater as Joe Pitt in Tony Kushner’s classic ANGELS IN AMERICA….
Tell me about your favorite specific experience of winter – a particular day, event or moment…..
Geoff: Two winters ago, on top of a mountain in Utah, in all our snowboard/ski garb, Chelsea said she would marry me. I have always liked Winter, but since then I have loved it.
Is there a character in literature – a book, a play, a poem – whose journey you would like to experience?
Geoff: I have always liked super heroes. I was big into ‘X-MEN’ when I was younger and often fantasized about being a mutant with weird powers and amazing team-mates. Also, Tolkien’s ‘Shire’ has always seemed like an ideal place to live, but if being a Hobbit means dealing with all those crazy Orcs, then count me out.
Tell me about a neighbor from your youth whom you particularly enjoyed.
Geoff: ‘Jane Doe’ was a good friend of my older sister..she lived next door to us. My bedroom window happened to be facing the side-yard of her house, where she would sun bathe…
I particularly enjoyed her.
Must the path to success involve struggle?
Like everything in life, success is measured by the individual, so my definition of success is this (stole it from coach John Wooden): “Success comes from knowing that you did your best to become the best you are capable of becoming.” So, I guess, success involves struggle with one’s self to reach your potential.
What is your first thought when you look out your window and discover that it’s raining?
Geoff: I usually discover, when I walk out the front door, that I am completely unprepared for the weather (I am so bad at that). I am ambivilant to the rain. It’s the degree of light that affects me (sometimes it is sunny and raining, but it is depressing, I guess, when it’s dark in the daytime).
Have you ever been completely misunderstood? Tell me about it….
My humor is misunderstood a lot. But, I don’t want to call it ‘misunderstood’, because that implies that the person receiving the jokes didn’t get it right. Usually, it’s the joke’s fault. The instances are daily.
Have you witnessed what you would call an act of heroism? What was it?
Geoff: I have seen youtube clups of people doing heroic things, but I can’t recall any big moments in life that I have witnessed. I have seen many acts of kindness, but to me, ‘heroism’ implies a heightened moment of kindness. I have had very few of those in my life.
Your favorite sandwich- how is it made?
Geoff: PB and J…and if you don’t know how to make it…come on. Any bread, any jelly, crunchy or smooth pb, I am into it.
The sound of which musical instrument relaxes you? Any particular piece of music that involves that instrument that you listen to when you wish to relieve stress?
Geoff: I like piano a lot as a soothing instrument. Oddly, I find the Vince Guaraldi Trio’s ‘Charlie Brown Christmas’ to be very soothing. I also like a soft electric guitar ala ‘the weepies’. Songs: ‘Old Coyote’ and ‘Please Speak Well of Me’.
If, today, you could be at your own high school graduation and you had the
opportunity to give yourself some advice – what would it be?
Geoff: ‘Your hair looks ridiculous, and be sure to call your family more when you get out into that big ‘ol world.’