Logging more than 35,000 miles between Geneva, Buffalo and Binghamton, Associate Professor of Theater Christopher Hatch has been crisscrossing western New York for rehearsals and performances during his sabbatical throughout 2018.
In Ripcord, a comedy about adversarial roommates in a retirement home, written by Pulitzer Prize winning playwright David Lindsay-Abaire, Hatch portrayed the protagonist’s son. Hatch says it was “a pleasure to work with” the production’s tight-knit cast and creative team, many of whom traveled from New York City to the Chenango River Theatre in Binghamton, where the play was performed.
“The play has a depth to it that’s refreshing,” Hatch told the Binghamton area news outlet Press Connects earlier this year. “It’s really funny, but at the same time there’s a whole lot of heart and creativity to it as well. It’s not just Felix and Oscar in the apartment the whole time — it’s much more than that.”
Hatch returned for his fourth consecutive summer to Buffalo’s Shakespeare in Delaware Park, for a production of Much Ado About Nothing. For his portrayal of Don Pedro, he was nominated for Best Actor in a Play in the Buffalo region by BroadwayWorld.com. The second oldest and one of the largest outdoor Shakespeare companies in the country, Shakespeare in Delaware Park is presented each year to between 40,000 and 50,000 audience members.
Numbering among “the 30-plus Shakespeare productions I have performed in during my career, this production was one of my absolute favorites,” says Hatch, who portrayed Don Pedro.
The final show of Hatch’s sabbatical was a production of The Three Musketeers with Buffalo’s All For One theatre company, portraying Rochefort, whom Hatch previously played in a production in Syracuse last year. While the source material for the scripts and the character were the same, Hatch says, each script utilized the character quite differently.
For instance, Hatch says, “in Syracuse my character was killed at the end of the play and in this recent production he lived.” Despite the differences, both productions featured “really great stage combat,” which Hatch says he particularly enjoyed.
Between a busy rehearsal and performance schedule, Hatch also participated in an international stage combat conference, shot a commercial, and booked two theatre acting gigs for 2019.
A member of Actors’ Equity Association, Hatch has extensive stage experience, acting in professional productions with companies such as the Utah Shakespeare Festival, the Indiana Repertory Theatre and Kansas City Lyric Opera, among others. Prior to joining the HWS faculty in 2010, Hatch earned a B.A. from Pennsylvania State University and a M.F.A. from the University of Missouri-Kansas City. He earned a certificate from the Stage Internazionale Di Commedia Dell’Arte in Italy, and has taught at Indiana University and the University of Missouri-Kansas City. At HWS, he teaches a wide range of courses in the Theatre Department including a study-abroad program in Bali. He also teaches a course on baseball and American culture in the American Studies program and has presented twice at the National Baseball Hall of Fame. Hatch has directed a number of campus productions, including Twelfth Night, Boeing Boeing, and A Streetcar Named Desire.