“We comic actors have never been recoginsed as dramatic actors have"
Joan Pera has his own page in the Guinness Book of Records: the play La extraña pareja (The Odd Couple), in which he co-starred with Paco Morán, ran for six years and is the theatrical work seen by the largest number ever of paying spectators. “After six years nothing remained of the comedy written by Neil Simon, everything was ours. The author wrote it once, and we re-wrote it millions of times”, the Catalan actor said in the radio interview carried out in our popu-up radio TBS on Air.
He vindicated the role of comic actors like himself: “We have never been recognised as dramatic actors have, or been awarded Oscars, or received subsidies”. The actor explained that the only time in his life that he applied for a grant it was refused because he “makes people laugh”, after which he added: “In the play La Taberna dels Bufons, which I’m currently performing, we use Shakespeare to vindicate ourselves”.
He is currently working on a film about Pau Casals, in which he plays the great cellist. Joan Pera explained that the most difficult thing for him was the musical instrument: “He was the best cellist in the world, and the first notes must sound natural. I took courses, walking in the street with the cello on my back; it looked as if the instrument was walking on its own”, Joan Pera joked.
Although he has recently been working for the big screen, it is the theatre that has stolen his heart: “Cinema is a dream. Theatre is magic” the actor declared. He also commented in the interview that, despite what some may think, there is a lot of work in both the cinema industry and theatre: “When I started, there were four theatres in Barcelona. Now we have 64 of them”.
The students who participated in the interview didn’t miss the opportunity to ask about Mr. Bean and Woody Allen, the two most charismatic characters in Spain dubbed by Joan Pera. The actor is particularly fond of Woody Allen, as he is “so real, so human and so similar to anyone he has created”.