Canadian actor Charles Ross’s misspent youth has paid off handsomely as all those hours watching Star Wars videos have given him an international career.
He has fashioned a One-Man Star Wars™ Trilogy in which he plays all the characters, sings the music, flies the ships, fights the battles and condenses the plots into just 60 minutes.
“It’s Star Wars as it was never intended to be seen,” he says. “Stripped of the revolutionary special effects, epic soundtrack, and galactic scale – reduced to its essence.”
It began a long time ago, if not in a galaxy far far away, back in 1994, with the idea of doing a five-minute Star Wars.
“I wrote the first treatment of it in 2001, which was just the first film and it ran about 35 minutes,“ he recalls.
“I remember thinking that nobody in an audience would be able to follow it.
“I was happily incorrect in my assumption. The ultimate goal was to translate my knowledge of Star Wars into a stage show that was both entertaining and accessible to the average person.
“My biggest hurdle was my mental block. I knew the films inside and out, but I was worried that I might be the only person who did. The writing process was quick, as was the rehearsal, and then the revision process (it still happens today) happened during performance. I had to simultaneously convince the audience and myself that this crazy show would work.”
Since then he has added One Man Lord of the Rings to his repertoire. “I perform it at other venues on the tour and it sees the story of Frodo and the Fellowship travel from the Shire to Mordor and back. I play 55 specific characters from the films. I also transform into 10,000 Urukai and 200,000 Orcs. There’s no costumes, no set, and no Hollywood talent – just me using my voice and body. It strangely works.”
One Man Star Wars is at the Lyceum on Monday.