Myles Mattsey is a junior with double majors in music and political science and a minor in German. Mattsey is known for being involved in the theater department here at Valparaiso University. Not only as an actor, but a behind-the-scenes person in the scene shop and the president of the Phi Mu Alpha Sinfonia music fraternity on campus. His most recent project is starring in the Valpo Department of Theatre’s spring play, “One Slight Hitch.”
Show dates for the upcoming production are scheduled for 8 pm on April 28 and 29, and 2 pm on April 30 and May 1 at the Valparaiso University Theatre.
“It’s actually my first full-length show since [the] first semester of my freshman year. It’s really, really exciting to be able to do a full-length play again, and able to do it in its full capacity, especially as a lead actor,” said Mattsey.
Having grown up in a family where his dad was an opera singer, Mattsey spent most of his childhood traveling to different places like New York City, where his dad has performed with the Metropolitan Opera for the last two decades.
“He’s always been my role model. He’s always been so dedicated. He’s had such a fun life, and you can see it on his face when he’s on stage,” said Mattsey. “I aspire to be able to do what he does, seeing it my whole life.”
Mattsey realized that he wanted to pursue theater and music when he was in high school, but the theater had always been a very comforting place for him all his life. Being in so many theaters when traveling to see his dad perform made him see theaters as a sort-of home.
“No matter where I am, I always feel very welcome in a theater. It could be a theater in my hometown, or it could be an auditorium somewhere in Arkansas,” said Mattsey. “I always know that those are the people and the atmosphere that I feel most comfortable [with].”
Here at Valpo, in addition to acting, Mattsey has also become involved with working in the scene shop.
“It’s one thing being an actor,” said Mattsey. “But seeing everything behind it come together it’s a whole other experience.”
The scene shop also serves for him as a source of awe and inspiration as there is always a new project in the works every time he comes in.
“It’s a lot of fun. It goes between being a lot of work and not being a lot of work, but it’s those weeks leading up to a show…it’s crazy,” said Mattsey. “Especially these last couple of weeks, our set for the show is huge…they’ve put it up and now they’re painting it, and every time I walk in there’s something new that they’ve done. It’s super cool.”
Mattsey’s involvement with the music fraternity, Phi Mu Alpha Sinfonia, is another aspect of the Valpo theater community he values—this year serving as their president.
“Especially with the music fraternity, every one of us has some type of passion for music,” said Mattsey. “A lot of us are involved in the theater here, but many of our brothers were involved in music, theater, choir or band in high school. And so it very much feels like I’m at home with those kinds of people.”
When asked his favorite thing about theater, Mattsey responded with the reason why he finds so much enjoyment out of the experience: seeing a production in its entirety.
“My favorite thing about theater is when the show ends. And I know that might sound weird, but there’s this rush of adrenaline when you take that last bow, after you’ve been working on a show for months. There’s happiness, there’s sadness, there’s relief, there’s this overwhelming feeling of ‘okay what do I do now?’ Cause I’ve been dedicating all this time,’” said Mattsey. “But it’s always been my favorite feeling—there’s a certain sense of accomplishment.”
For Mattsey, being involved in theater is not only a family tradition, but his own dream as well. From being exposed to the theater world at a young age to then choosing to pursue it in high school and college, theater has always been a part of his life and will likely always be.
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