Philosopher and play-critic, Aristotle, defined acting in “Rhetoric” as “a matter of the right management of the voice to express the various emotions.” Aristotle goes on to say that “dramatic ability is a natural gift, and can hardly be systematically taught.” It would be dramatically difficult to not witness this definition of performing in Eastern University’s own Zach Wilson.
Wilson has been performing since sophomore year of high school, and has been a part of Eastern’s performances from his Freshman year up until his final semester here with us this Spring. Wilson has also been a member of Eastern’s choir, Turning Point, and has served as the choir’s president this school year. Below is a brief summary of an interview this writer had the privilege of holding with Zach Wilson over a pleasant breakfast on the morning of the 31st of March.
“What have been some of your favorite pieces you have performed with Turning Point?”
“‘The Snow is Deep on the Ground’ by Katie Kring, [a cappella arrangement of the poem by Kenneth Patchen] that piece blew me away. We also performed ‘Only in Sleep’ by Ēriks Ešenvalds. We only performed that for a recital, but then I found myself humming it after.”
“‘Still Here!’ will be your last theater performance here at Eastern. Has there been a favorite show you’ve done here?”
“‘Into the Woods’ freshman year was a good experience. There was a big enough cast that a lot of people could be in the show so I could meet people and make friends, which is different than recently with the smaller shows we’ve had, so there is a bit of disappointment with people not getting in but that’s the nature of shows. I was the narrator and the mysterious man in ‘Into the Woods.’”
“Tell me a bit about the Turning Point concert and recording session coming up.”
“A couple weeks ago they were just like ‘hey we’re gonna put Turning Point in the recording studio.’ So we’re going to go and record two of our songs. I think its just the music department trying to increase what the music department is doing and being out there. I know there is a new building coming soon too. The concert is just the Spring music concert that happens every year. Lord willing, we won’t be performing with masks this time. We are also going to be performing during graduation.”
“Do you hope to keep singing and acting after you graduate? You’re going on to teach, will you be looking to keep up with your performing arts?”
“Last year when ‘Little Women’ was canceled, a senior gave a really good speech about how this would be his last time on stage because he’s going into business. It hit me then, that won’t be me, but I really hope not, but I have no idea how scheduling will work. The short answer is no, I’d like it to not stop, but I recognize it might. Like [him] I am thankful for the opportunity in college to have fun. Well see if it stops or not.”
“Is there anything else you’d like to talk about? This is ultimately a story about you and your art, is there more you’d like to share?”
“Just a shout out to other choir members: Hailey, who is the vice president who has stepped up and done things for me I didn’t even know had to be done. Also Jessie, the other bass, just for being good friends and working with him in the choir. We’ve had 4 different choir directors these years, I’m glad we’ve been able to stick though it. Its been hard on us and the directors as well.”
Zach Wilson is a dedicated and talented performer, whose eloquence and dedication is reflected in all other aspects of his life. The Spring Music Festival will be on Saturday, April 9th. You can get tickets for the festival at http://easternarts.ticketleap.com/.
Sources: Aristotle’s “Rhetoric” Book III Chapter I