The star of Sweat gives us a tour of her dressing room oasis and what she needs offstage to succeed onstage.
“Did you see the Times article today about this town in Ohio?” actor Johanna Day says as we step into her dressing room at Studio 54. “[It’s] this town that lot of jobs were lost, but they’re keeping the town going. It’s mostly immigrants now; they’re building beautiful stores; they making a living…” she trails off.
Performing in the Pulitzer Prize-winning and Tony-nominated Best Play Sweat has caused Day (a Tony nominee for her performance) to pause—read the news a little differently. “Me, a hip, liberal artist type that I thought I was—I am, I guess—I forgot about these people,” says Day with a note of accountability. “Obviously, many people did.”
Day plays Tracey, a steel worker who winds up battling her best friend after she gets locked out of the factory to which she (and her family) devoted decades of her life. Living in Tracey’s skin eight shows a week, Day viscerally understands the plight of blue collar workers who lost their livelihood and, for some, their sense of purpose in the wake of the economic downturn of the early aughts.
Day recently took us on a tour of her dressing room and while she may be all Tracey onstage, backstage it’s all Johanna.