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Young Ridgewood Actor Grapples With Moral Ambiguity Onstage

Ridgewood's Daniil Krimer explores moral ambiguity as Davis in the April production of "Really Really."
Ridgewood's Daniil Krimer explores moral ambiguity as Davis in the April production of "Really Really." Photo Credit: Facebook

RIDGEWOOD, N.J. — No one taught Ridgewood’s Daniil Krimer how to play a scene asking for forgiveness from a rape that his character doesn’t remember.

"How do you behave in a situation like that?" the 24-year-old Montclair State University graduate said. "And how do you make the audience believe it?"

Krimer, as Davis, had no blueprint. He went in cold. He went in alone.

It's a perfect reflection of the message he aims to send audiences in the Actors Equity Association Basic Showcase Code’s (Pending) production of “Really Really" on April 26.

Today's youth — a generation fueled by self-awareness — face a different type of moral ambiguity, honed in on throughout the show by playwright Paul Downs Colaizzo.

“The decisions you have to make growing up are to satisfy everyone. That’s identical to everyone at our age," Krimer said. "Are they making you happy, or are they making everyone else happy?”

With iPhones as props, “Really Really” follows Krimer as Davis, the son of a high-roller CFO, who’s earnest college career gets thrown off track when he’s accused of a rape that he cannot recall.

Krimer and the Montclair State University BFA Acting and Musical Theatre Community cast are the first group of MSU BFA graduates in decades to fully produce a live production of an existing work in New York City. 

The show is raw and contemporary. Troubling and viscerally poignant. To Krimer and much of the cast, it’s life.

“People my age — Generation Y, and even Millennials — will be able to relate to the language and the situation,” he said. “It makes you more self-aware and in touch with your emotions, how you’re feeling and who you are. That’s rare.”

The young actor and his cast had raised more than $1,900 on a Kickstarter campaign as of Tuesday night to help raise money for the production. 

One of Krimer’s goals is to raise $2,500 by April 4, when the campaign expires. His other is to broaden his audience’s horizons.

“Our job is to awaken people," he said. "It's really important for theater to be relatable to all demographics

“And once they see something they can relate to, they’ll want to come back.”

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