Glen Macnow is about to add a line to his resume: actor. The longtime WIP-FM (94.1) radio personality is stepping out onto the stage in A.R. Gurney's The Dining Room, a production by the Swarthmore Players, a community-theater group. The show is a series of vignettes connected by a dinette set that each of the characters own over a long span of time.
Macnow chatted with us about why he wanted to get in front of the stage lights and why it's refreshing to work with people who didn't know who he was.
You've never acted before? Not even in high school?
OK, I've never done it since I was an adult. I haven't stepped onstage in 40 years. We did a Chekhov play, the name of which I don't remember. I was in Oklahoma!, and I believe my role was officially described as "chorus," which is funny because I can't sing. But I have to sing in this, too. I'm one of three brothers, and we have to sing a song.
Why get onstage now?
So why was it on your bucket list then?
I speak in front of an audience all the time, but I've always loved movies. I think everyone thinks they can be an actor, and I think I'll be proved that I can't. I like being in front of an audience, but it was a challenge I wanted to do. It always seemed like a fun thing to do. One of the other things I did on my bucket list was stand-up comedy, and that wasn't as horrible as I thought it would be.
I've never been to France. It's ridiculous. I should go. Going there would be interesting. But this is the bucket-list item I chose. If you don't try new experiences, life can get pretty boring, and I want to try new experiences. Ask me this in two weeks if I think it was a good idea, because I don't know. The cast says I'm fine, but how do you know? If the audience doesn't throw fruit at me, I'll consider this a success.
What if they're just telling you you're good because you're a local celeb?
Theater fans can be as brutal as Eagles fans.
If I stink at this, no one will care that I'm on the radio. I don't want to sound like I'm going to stink. Maybe I'll launch a whole new career. Hahaha, no.
I read about a guy, when I did the gangster movie book with George Anastasia, there was a guy in Analyze This, Joe Viterelli. He always played a gangster, that's all he got to do. The guy, he was not an actor, he was just a guy. He was coaxed into going into show business at the age of 50-something. Does everyone deep down have that dream? Sure, but I ain't quitting the day job.
If you don't try new things, then life is boring. What am I going to do, sit at home and do nothing? I'm having a blast. We're in rehearsals, and I really enjoy the people I'm doing it with. It's so different than the type of people I meet. It's really been fun for me.