Spotlight On: Nick Paglino 

Christopher Borg 

Nick Paglino

The handsome Nick Paglino was the recipient of the 2011 New York Innovative Theatre Award for Outstanding Lead Actor in a Play for his work in Godlight Theatre Company’s production of An Impending Rupture of the Belly. He is a member of both the Another Urban Riff Theatre Co. and Godlight, he sings, he dances, he plays the saxophone and is known for his athletic and stage combat abilities.

Most recently, he starred as Detective Sam Wood in Godlight’s production of In the Heat of the Night, which received two 2010 Drama Desk Award nominations!

A Michigan native, Nick graduated from NYU’s Tisch School for the Arts and has extensive work both Off- and Off-Off-Broadway, as well as several roles in independent films. In addition to his IT Award, he appeared in the film Pre by Steven Tanenbaum which received an Independent Film Feature Award for Best Ensemble Cast.

His next project, also presented by Godlight Theatre Company, is playing the central character in Will Elliot's The Pilo Family Circus adapted by Matt Pelfrey, which is being presented at the New Ohio Theatre as part of the 2012 Ice Factory Festival. Based on the novel by Will Elliot, the play is an imaginative exploration of circus and clowning. The story centers on Jamie, a mild-mannered concierge who has spent his life letting people walk all over him. When Jamie, played by Nick, is unwittingly coerced into being a clown in a demented circus (in another dimension) and forced to apply the face paint, Jamie turns into his evil alter-ego, JJ The Clown, and a battle between his two personalities ensues.

I asked Nick about this unusual character arc:

Nick: “Jamie is used to being a doormat. But JJ, is a psychotic clown, becomes the most evil of the clown division in the circus. One clown describes Jamie's transformation by saying 'Nicer the man, meaner the clown.' Throughout the play, Jamie battles back and forth between himself and JJ, and ultimately has to figure out how to stop JJ's destruction and escape the circus.

"I feel that, to a certain extent, there are two sides to everyone, and it's inspiring to create a character that explores a very dramatic and even comical version of the duality of one man. The only time I ever truly feel like myself and truly in control of who I am is when I am acting [and] the one thing I appreciate the most about indie theatre is the opportunity it provides an artist to explore the entire imagination. Indie theatre is not limiting, it's the exact opposite, and that's the challenge I think we all crave."

The show runs at The New Ohio Theatre as part of the 2012 Ice Factory Festival from July 11-14th.


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