Having an understudy ready just in case a lead actor falls ill is one of the most common practices in live theater.
But what if that understudy was promoted so he would share the role with the lead, with each performer taking turns acting out that character night after night?
Having two actors cast for the same role is a method known as double casting and it's something the Antaeus Company in North Hollywood has been employing in its productions since the early 1990s, LA Weekly reports.
Double casting, or partner casting, means audiences may not always see a particular production with the same cast, but it allows actors and actresses to commit their talents to other projects at the same time, according to the LA Weekly.
On their off days, some actors check out their counterparts in rehearsal to get a better idea of their character, the magazine reports.
"I'm definitely an enthusiast of partner casting," Casey Stangl, who directed Antaeus' Peace in Our Time in 2011, told LA Weekly. "Scheduling rehearsals was hell, but I found it makes the actors collaborators in a way that's not just in their own cause but being aware of the whole wheel. They're always stepping out and watching themselves inside it."
To read more about double casting and upcoming productions at the Antaeus Company click here.