Dec 18, 2015

Gordon White - King of Clowns

Theatre Arts (Studio 58)

Gordon White

Gordon White is literally the King of Clowns. An alumnus of Studio 58, Langara’s Theatre Arts program, he is currently playing the role of his life in KOOZA by Cirque du Soleil. He plays the King, one of three clowns, in the production – a role that he helped create.

“I get to play the role on two different levels: one, as an authority figure, and two, as the stupidest of the three. It makes the role challenging, but so much fun to play,” said Gordon. “It’s an adrenalin rush every time I work.”

Gordon is passionate about keeping the tradition of physical comedy alive and has played clowns in several Cirque productions, including Saltimbanco, Varekai, Banana Speel, and KOOZA.

“I think that clowning has changed a lot since the great age of Chaplin & Keaton due to the evolution of technology,” said Gordon. “With the gradual introduction of the 'talkies' and radio and television, and now, social media platforms such as Youtube, there are limitless and immediate opportunities for anyone trying to be a clown – some successful, some not. It all comes down to the heart of the clown.

“For any actors interested in pursuing clowning, I'd recommend keeping up with developing their acting skills, because, like good acting, good 'clowning' is also based on 'truth' and 'being in the moment'. If it's not believable, it's not funny. Also, sharpening your improv and physical comedy skills would certainly be valuable. Observe life around you...there's a goldmine of inspiration and comedy material out there.”

A resident of Fort Langely, Gordon was born and raised in BC. He has fond memories of his first movement class at Studio 58 in 1976.

“Me in black tights, a 6’11” 230 lbs. teenager, not really a babe magnet,” said Gordon. “I’m proud of my hometown and of KOOZA, so it’s very gratifying to be able to bring the two together. I absolutely love it. But the best part is by far having the opportunity to be with my family and sleep in my own bed. It’s like normal life. Priceless!”

KOOZA is playing in Vancouver until December 27, 2015.

Gordon White