Linda Gehringer and Tessa Auberjoinois in The Roommate.
Jen Silverman’s The Roommate is a funny, dark comedy, set in Iowa, telling the story of two women at a crossroads in life: Sharon (a sensible empty-nester who is curious and very, very talkative good at getting to the truth) and Robyn (a new arrival to Iowa most recently from the Bronx, hiding a lifetime of secrets). The cast members are SCR veterans Tessa Auberjonois (Robyn) and Linda Gehringer (Sharon). Here’s a bit about each actor, including their most treasured roommate and SCR recollections.
NAME: Tessa Auberjonois
ROOMMATE ROLE: Robyn
HOMETOWN: Los Angeles
BEEN TO IOWA? Never.
PREVIOUS SCR APPEARANCES: Mr. Wolf, Absurd Person Singular, Becky Shaw, Crimes of the Heart, A Wrinkle in Time, Lobby Hero, Hold Please, Everett Beekin and numerous Pacific Playwrights Festival and NewSCRipts readings.
TV & FILM: “Shameless,” Law & Order,” “Law & Order: SVU,” “ER,” Birth, Final Fantasy, Guild Wars and Showtime’s “I’m Dying Up Here.”
BEST ROOMMATE MEMORY: “I was looking for the perfect pair of jeans and I bought about 10 pairs from every possible store in NYC. Then, I did a little fashion show and all my three roommates helped me choose the best ones. Which jeans? The cheap ones from H&M and I returned the rest. I still have the H&M jeans!”
BEST ‘WOMAN-EMPOWERING’ STORY: “I love the book Their Eyes Were Watching God by Zora Neale Hurston.”
BEST SCR MEMORY: “I do hold dear performing Hold Please (with Linda Gehringer), right after 9/11, and realizing that our little office comedy was actually providing necessary relief to our audience when they really needed just to laugh for two hours. It made me realize the value of our work, even though it could feel like what I do isn't in service of others, I realized that it was. Linda had us all singing ‘Don't Rain on My Parade’ as a pre-show warm-up in the dressing room and I think of that every time I hear the song!”
NAME: Linda Gehringer
ROOMMATE ROLE: Sharon
HOMETOWN: A Midwestern girl from Detroit.
BEEN TO IOWA? “Yes. I was in graduate school at the University of Minnesota and was chosen to compete in American College Theatre Festival’s regional competition. The director, another actor and I travelled to Iowa—where the competition was—in a terrible snowstorm. We had to stay in one of those truly scary motels on the side of the freeway, with only one bed in the room and a vending machine for food. We did make it safely to the competition the next day.”
PREVIOUS SCR APPEARANCES: Going to a Place where you Already Are; How to Write a New Book for the Bible; The Parisian Woman; The Language Archive; The Piano Teacher; A Naked Girl on the Appian Way; Getting Frankie Married—and Afterwards; Hold Please; But Not for Me; The Intelligent Design of Jenny Chow; Circle Mirror Transformation; Doubt, a parable; Hamlet; The Retreat from Moscow; A Delicate Balance; All My Sons; Relatively Speaking; The Last Night of Ballyhoo; Arcadia; and Good as New.
TV & FILM: “Grey’s Anatomy,” recurring roles on “Touch” and “Justified,” “NCIS,” “Raising Hope,” “Weeds,” “Gilmore Girls,” “Without a Trace,” “Cold Case,” “Ally McBeal,” “Frasier” and “The West Wing” and in the films Into the Storm, Kreep and As Good As It Gets.
BEST ROOMMATE MEMORY: “I actually can't tell you my favorite roommate story. So….let’s leave it at that.”
Meet The Roommates
Sharon is an Iowan and Robyn is from the Bronx. Watch the video—and meet the characters of The Roommate.
BEST ‘WOMAN-EMPOWERING’ STORIES: “My mind jumps to Sophie's Choice and Anna Karenina. Well, they aren’t exactly about empowerment, but what fascinates me is the complication of being a woman. I am always attracted to courage.”
BEST SCR MEMORY: “What comes to mind for me is that first day of rehearsal, in SCR’s rehearsal hall. I walk by the reception desk, down the stairs and down the long hallway. There always is a vulnerability and trepidation that I find about that first day. Each time, over the past 20 years that I walk this path, I remember so clearly the thrill and excitement I had the first time I ever did a play here—Good as New, also directed by Martin Benson. I would never have guessed how many times I would be lucky enough to walk down those stairs again and again…”
Learn more and buy ticket to The Roommate.