Alex Wyse on his infatuation with cheese and other things you never knew about him

Alex Wyse

Alex Wyse

When I spoke with Alex Wyse, most recently seen in the off-Broadway production of Bare, I was eager to get information from the young up-and-coming actor that hadn’t yet been revealed.

Wyse didn’t disappoint.

Divulging information about everything from his artistic past, kindergarten crimes and cheese classes, Wyse proved yet again why he’s one of off-Broadway’s most beloved young actors.

SDD: Do you have any unusual or hidden talents?

AW: When I was a kid, I wanted to be a painter or I wanted to be maybe a set designer, but I was always in art classes and I was always drawing and always painting and that was actually a really huge part of my life for all through school. I was always doing theatre too, but I thought I’d be painting forever. I don’t know, maybe I’ll come back to that one day.

SDD: Do you still do it?

AW: No, no, but actually, I probably stopped painting because… it sounds so weird saying that, I haven’t talked about that in forever. Most people do not know that about me, so you can have the first scoop. I stopped at the end of high school and right when I stopped that is when I started writing a lot more seriously or more frequently I should say, so maybe the energy that I put into visual arts is now something that I put into writing. It feels like the same energy that I put into acting too. It’s like all coming from the same place, I keep looking for these different ways to do it. At one point in my life, I was painting weird paintings. They’re kind of good. I still have some at home.

SDD: You should sell it. Go down to Times Square, stand on the sidewalk and be like, ‘Don’t you know who I am? Don’t you want to buy my art?’ and watch what tourists do.

AW: I should do that, but it should be my rap CD, right? I should try to sell my rap CD. Maybe I’ll do rap next.

SDD: There you go. There’s a future for you.
AW: But if I think of any strange talent, I’ll tell you. I’m not sure right now.

SDD: I have to mention cheese eating.

AW: Yeah, I just think it’s the most delicious thing in the world. I don’t think there’s anything that tastes better. I like that there’s this whole world attached to it, this kind of culture attached to it. I really like that it has nothing to do with theatre because it’s something to blindly love and it doesn’t have to do with what the other 90% of my life has to do with.

SDD: Well, is there a reason for having it on your resume? Are you waiting for a Velveeta commercial or something?

AW: You know, yes. I put that there because it’s really important. You know that’s where the important work happens and I need the world to know. I haven’t done it yet but very soon I’m going to take some cheese classes and, as you can imagine, I’m very excited but I’ll give you a full report. That will be a new adventure for me.

SDD: What is a cheese class, is that where you just eat different cheese or do you make something or..?

AW: I think it’s all of the above. They have cheese classes at Murray’s Cheese Shop and probably other places and I want to go to there, so yeah.

SDD: Did you just quote 30 Rock?

AW: Yeah, that is my favorite TV show ever.

SDD: What are you watching now that 30 Rock is over?

AW: What am I watching? I like Homeland, and Mad Men, and Breaking Bad, and Girls, and Enlightened. Those are my favorite shows right now. Good shows, good shows, if you haven’t watched any of them, you’ve gotta get on it. 

Alex Wyse

Alex Wyse

SDD: What’s your favorite color?

AW: Blue

SDD: Do you collect anything?

AW: When I was in kindergarten, I used to steal coins from my classroom, like foreign coins and I was in kindergarten but I used to try to see what I could get away with so I would just shove them in my pockets and I had this giant collection of coins from all over the world that were all stolen. I also have a big playbill collection of all flops, so yeah.

SDD: That’s pretty impressive. How many playbills do you have?

AW: I have some good stuff. How many? Maybe a few hundred. I haven’t collected them in a long time, but I still have them just sitting in my apartment.  Really from like when I was in high school is when I was still collecting them the most. I have some really cool shit. I have like Moose Murders and Kelly and Rags and Smile. I just love those things.

SDD: Who is the last person who made you feel star struck?

AW: I was on the train with Susan Sarandon and we got off at the same stop. That was crazy.

SDD: If you could delete any song from existence, which one would you choose?

AW: That’s a good question. What song would I get rid of? Oh, oh “concrete jungle, where dreams are made of,” I hate that song because they’re made of what? They’re made of what? It’s not a complete sentence like she stops the sentence. “concrete jungle, where dreams are made of,” is not a sentence. You can’t end a sentence with a preposition. It doesn’t make sense.

SDD: I’m going to tell Alicia Keys that. She’ll make a new version for you.

AW: Tell her. I’ll tell her.

SDD: What’s your favorite curse word?

AW: Either ‘fuck’ or ‘Ashley Olsen’

SDD: Two parts: Which Broadway star would you most want to get a drink with and who would you want to spend an afternoon with?

AW: I want to have a drink with Betsy Wolfe. She’s somebody who like, we have all these mutual friends and I’ve never actually met her face-to-face and she just seems like the coolest person in the world. I want to have a drink with her and then I want to braid her hair. Okay and the person I’d want to hang out with is the greatest Broadway star of all-time Bernadette Peters.

SDD: Are you going to give an explanation for that one?

AW: Do you need an explanation? She’s just the end. Broadway ends with Bernadette Peters.

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About Samantha S.

"I found the theatre and I found my home.” ― Audra McDonald

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