A Chat with Full Monty Director Neil Dale
Meet Director Neil Dale
This isn’t the first time you’ve worked on The Full Monty. Tell us a little about your previous experience with the show.
This is the first time I’ve directed the show, but I had the pleasure of playing the role of Harold about 4 years ago and I had an absolute blast. As an actor in the show, I loved the heart and honesty of the writing and the journey the guys take together, and I knew back then that I wanted to have my shot to direct the piece.
Were you a fan of the movie version?
I was a huge fan of the movie. I really related to Jerry’s fight to stay in his kid’s life and although he continued to make silly choices I could always see that his heart was in the right place. I’m also a big fan of movies that are gritty and real, and I think the movie of The Full Monty nailed the time period, plus it was filmed in the UK where I’m originally from.
The piece is famous for the big reveal. How are you preparing the actors for the big scene?
Having done the BIG REVEAL myself, I keep reassuring my guys that by that point in the show, every member of the audience will be rooting for them to succeed. Apart from that, we are making sure that the guys feel very comfortable with the routine and of course their costumes. Or should I say, lack of costumes!
Tell us a little bit about your cast.
As a director, I have been blessed to have some amazing actors who are crazy enough to work with me on my projects and The Full Monty is no exception. This cast is working so hard to bring the story to life and to help me tell it in an honest but fun way. One guy that continues to grow as an actor is Steven Freitas. He is playing the role of Jerry Lukowski and I can’t wait for the people of San Diego see this young man shine.
Do you have a favorite song or scene in the show?
My favorite scene in the show is when Jerry sings a beautiful song to Nathan his son. The song is called “Breeze Off the River” and it is a heartfelt moment between a father and his son.
What is your favorite thing about The Full Monty and why should audiences come see it?
I have always loved this show and I feel very lucky to have the opportunity to direct it. Why should people come see it? The Full Monty is a fun piece of theatre with a lot of heart and some great tunes. And gentlemen please don’t think this show is only for the ladies because it’s not. As a guy, I think most men can relate to some of the struggles these men go through to succeed. Not to mention the BIG REVEAL is worth the ticket price in and of itself!