Five Friday Questions with Bobbi Kotula

Bobbi Kotula is an actor and singer from Bethlehem, Pennsylvania. She won a Footlight Award for her 2013 performance in the Intiman’s Stu for Silverton, and she’s worked at theatres all over the region, from Seattle Rep to 5th Avenue Theatre to numerous musical productions at Village Theatre. Most recently, she played Mrs. Warren in Seattle Shakespeare’s Mrs. Warren’s Profession, about which recent 5 Fri Q-er Corey McDaniel said “I would pay any price asked to see any one of these three powerhouse performers on stage.” Kotula joined me for this week’s installment of Five Friday Questions.

What’s the best performance you’ve seen lately?

Best is difficult to answer because the Puget Sound talent pool is deeply gifted and inventive. I suppose the performance I should gauge as “best” is one that moves my spirit. With that in mind, Billy Elliot comes to the top of my list. The story of a 12-year-old boy finding his own way through his rough world was a soul-lightening experience.

What’s the best meal in Seattle?

If it has to be in Seattle—I live in Issaquah and find so many excellent restaurants here: Fins, Montalcino, Noodle Boat—then I would have to say one of Tom Douglas’s restaurants, either Dahlia Lounge (coconut cream pie!) or Palace Kitchen are incredibly delicious.

What music gets you pumped up? What do you listen to when you’re sad?

Pumped up:

  • U2 (“Still Haven’t Found What I’m Looking For”)
  • Handel (Water Music)
  • Beethoven (Symphony #5 in C Minor, “Ode to Joy”)
  • J.S. Bach (“Jesu Joy of Man’s Desiring,” Brandenburg Concertos—I have a thing about trumpets)
  • Big band music (“Sing, Sing, Sing,” “String of Pearls,” “In the Mood,” ANYTHING TONY BENNETT!!)
  • Pharrell Williams (“Happy”)
  • Sarah Bareilles (“Brave”)

When I’m sad: meditation music on Pandora. Quiet acoustic hymns and reflective sweet melodies.

What’s the most crucial element of any production?

The most crucial element of any production for me is the authentic connection between the actors. It’s crucial to tell a story on stage with truth, humor, compassion and love. If there is no honest connection between the human beings on stage then I don’t want to sit and watch it. I cannot abide liars or selfish, unrealized performances.

What’s the most useful thing anyone’s ever taught you about working in theatre?

Show up early and be ready to work at your call time.