Meet the team of TICK, TICK...BOOM! - Donald Kolakowski (Director/Sound Design)

Donald Kolakowski is the director of the Evanston Children’s Theatre where he has been encouraging students to think outside the box since 2009. Donald has a BFA in Musical Theatre from Kent State University and was last seen onstage in THE EMPEROR'S GROOVY NEW CLOTHES (The Emperor) (Cleveland Playhouse). As a company member with The Cuckoo’s Theater Project, he has directed THE TEMPEST and THE GREEN BIRD. He would like to thank the cast and crew for their dedication to this story. “Time to soar!”

Get to know Donald!

TCTP: Jonathan Larson also wrote RENT. What’s your go to RENT song to belt when you’re alone?

DK: La Vie Boheme

TCTP: The main conflict of the show is dealing with not accomplishing what you thought you would. Have you ever struggled with that?

DK: I worked in a retail job for ten years after graduating from college. Anytime I had an opportunity to do a show was a major struggle getting the schedule approved. At first it was possible but after a while my employer stopped honoring any conflicts, stating that my priorities needed to be more aligned to the needs of the store. In addition to not being able to do theatre, the lack of pay and inflexible schedule meant going back to school to get certified to teach was no longer an option. I was devastated and struggled with the fear of having to give up my dream of working in the theatre and teaching children for two years.

TCTP: What’s your favorite lyric in the show?

DK: "All I've got tonight is static on a screen."

TCTP: Susan doesn’t love being a dance teacher and John doesn’t love working at a diner, while Michael eventually gave up the arts for corporate America. What’s your relationship with your survival job?

DK: Two years ago, I was stuck in an awful retail job that was destroying me and not allowing me to do what I love; theatre and teaching children. Now I work as a teaching assistant for a primary school where I work with a student with Down Syndrome, I direct for The Evanston Children’s Theatre, and I am an active company member with The Cuckoo’s Theatre Project. It was a dream come true the day I was able to quit retail.

TCTP: Jon is ashamed of his Twinkie obsession. What’s your favorite guilty pleasure?

DK: Binge watching cartoons on Netflix

Come see Donald's work in TICK, TICK...BOOM!, running November 17 - December 16 at Prop Thtr.

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