25 & Under: Dacey McNally

Actor/dancer, 18, Dunedin

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click to enlarge Dacey McNally - Todd Bates
Todd Bates
Dacey McNally

Talking back to teacher: When last we saw Dacey McNally, he was in [email protected]’s June production of Red, playing the beleaguered assistant to artist Mark Rothko, played by Keven Renken, McNally’s former teacher at PCCA. The younger actor more than held his own with his co-star, his final tirade at Rothko a nicely modulated aria of outrage.
He likes a challenge: This fall he enters the theater program at SUNY Purchase, where incoming freshmen are required to do a showcase for faculty and classmates. McNally is preparing a monologue from the gritty drama A Steady Rain in which he plays a cop reflecting on his friendship with a corrupt fellow officer. It’s not a role he’d likely be cast in, but that’s why he’s doing it. “It’s an emotional stretch, but I wanna go and show them what I can tackle.”
Gutsy move: When he used the same Steady Rain monologue to audition for SUNY, the auditor sat stone-faced. “I don’t get too scared too often,” says McNally, “but he scared me.” Must have impressed the guy, though; McNally got in.
Runs in the family: His parents are veteran actors with Broadway and soap opera credits; his mother runs Patricia Ann Dance Studio in Dunedin, where McNally helped her teach dance camp this summer; his brother’s in the New York company of Sleep No More; and his grandmother, 92, still teaches tap.

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