MSFHTII Cast Member Interview: Leeman Kessler

1. Tell us a little about yourself.

I was born in Nigeria in the early 80s to liberal Christian missionaries and got into acting playing a census-taker and a sheep in a nativity play at age 4. From there it was only inevitable I would find myself drawn to the stage. My various quests have taken me through Tennessee, Ohio, London England and finally here to Toronto where I charm Canadians with my brusque American manner and loud karaoke performances. I am married to a brilliant woman with a PhD in Medieval studies who is currently in 23rd grade, getting a Masters in Divinity. I also own eleven fingers.

2. Do you have a blog or website?

I share my life at and am on twitter at @lemurbouy

3. Is this your first Monkeyman show? If not, what monkey-credits do you have under your belt?

Monkeyman gave me my first acting job as King Kong and a werewolf back in 2008. Since then, I have played a harried director, HP Lovecraft, and can occasionally be heard doing voice overs for shows where they don’t want people to see my face.

4. What other shows have you been seen in recently?

I am currently playing the overly-excitable Roland at the Village Players’ rendition of Noel Coward’s Present Laughter. Previous to this, I commanded audiences as Dwight Eisenhower and Crawford Gordon in the Cold War musical comedy The Flying Avro Arrow at this year’s Fringe Festival

5. Tell us a little about the character you are playing in Phoenix II: The Mongolar Maneuver.

Tim is in over his head. He’s fooled, lucked, and slept his way into success and doesn’t know what to do with it. As a director, he’s not exactly a people person though better than George Lucas. His real dream is to do his documentary on Antarctica, Penguins: the Cockroaches of the South Pole. So far, he’s having trouble finding backers.

6. How do you think you would react to the situation Tim finds himself in in Phoenix II?

Sadly with much the same level of bumbling. Tim is a great example of trying to please everyone and pleasing no one. Something I can certainly relate to. That’s why I act and don’t direct. I much prefer to be told what to do and where to stand and what to say. It’s why Martin Chodorek (director of Phoenix) and I get along so swimmingly.

7. Monkeyman Productions tends to produce shows that are a little on the “nerdy” side. What do you get nerdy about?

I am an all around sci-fi/fantasy nerd. My most current nerdy behaviour includes running a D&D game, madly collecting achievements in Starcraft II, playing multiple online roleplaying games, and appearing in Monkeyman shows.

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