If you have gone to the theater in Houston at some point this past year, you probably caught a performance by Philip Hays. A Sugar Land native, Hays graduated from the University of Houston's theater program in 2006 and has been steadily following his passion since. His bio is quite impressive; Hays has probably acted with just about every theater company in town, including but not limited to Classical Theatre Company, Main Street Theater, Horse Head, the Houston Shakespeare Festival and the Houston Grand Opera as well as the Prague Shakespeare Festival, among others.
One of Hays' defining characteristics is his ability to fully encompass his characters, and the spectrum of characters he's played runs the gamut. Hays is one of those actors who you've probably seen a hundred times and would never know it was the same guy.
What He Does: Hays is above all an actor, mostly in theater. In addition to the lengthy catalog of plays he has performed in, he has also occupied the director's chair on a few occasions. "I've also been directing at HSPVA and helped to create and perform CUT DOWN! last year with BooTown, a company I helped start." Hays tells us.
Most recently, Hays had a role in the remount of Houston Grand Opera's The Barber of Seville performed at the Miller Outdoor Theatre.
Why He Likes it: Even after many years of performing, Hays and acting are still in their honeymoon phase. "I get to play and tell stories for a living," he enthuses. "That's pretty cool."
What Inspires Him: Nothing is more inspirational to Hays than a challenge. "Every time I get to perform or direct, I hope to stretch myself in some way."
Additionally, Hays is a musicphile who loves a good jam. Music is a huge source of inspiration for him.
"I love a good song, and the way music can affect you emotionally, intellectually and physically, sometimes all at once. I'm not much of a musician myself, but I have secret rock-star aspirations."
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If Not This, Then What: "Oh gosh, I don't know. Probably science. Physics has always interested me. That and cryptozoology." If Not Here, Then Where: When you ask many actors where they see themselves going or where else they might want to be, L.A. and New York are fairly common responses. That's where the work is. Not for Hays; he's got his sights set on a different set of stars.
"A friend asked me recently if I were one of the first million people asked to colonize the Moon, would I go? And I kind of surprised myself when I didn't hesitate to say yes. So let's say the Moon."
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