ACTRESS: Stage, Screen, TV, Commercials & VOs
I didn't originally seek out acting, it came to me... I was actually pretty shy when I was younger, loved to sing and dance, and tell stories to my friends - which they encouraged and enjoyed. But I was extremely body conscious and objectified early on. So, when my friend's Mom (stage manager) asked me to participate in a local play I asked, "Doing what?!" It was a skit from The Carol Burnett Show, "So Proudly We Heal" (so apropos as it turned out - the healing part). I was to portray sexy Nurse Applebaum. I had to keep reminding the Doctor in the scene of my name, to which he replied, "The apples I remember, it's the name I forget." The audience erupted with laughter. That was the first time (age 23) I can remember being tickled by my figure - it was freeing to laugh about it, and I found myself backstage grinning ear-to-ear, wanting more... After several plays with this [community] I asked where to study so I could continue to work. I did an intensive program at the revered Lee Strasberg Institute in NYC and soon was getting paid to entertain up and down the East Coast. I was thrilled! I had no doubt I found my calling.
But I was never a fan of the cold weather and soon put together a plan to move out West. My best friend and I found a great place in LaJolla, CA (not too shabby a place to start!) while I put feelers out in LA. Six months later I had a place in Burbank with another aspiring NY actor.
I immediately found work with a new talent manager, whose business I was pretty much left to run. Within months and numerous bounced checks from her, I was encouraged by every one of her clients to open my own company - I did. I was getting auditions - for everyone. That too was thrilling! And I obtained my SAG card (much too soon, will explain...) after just 2 short weeks of arriving in LA - as a stand-in for Kim Delaney on N.Y.P.D. Blue.
But that figure of mine, well, that didn't quite work for TV & Film. My headshots got me into many audition rooms and I was making some great impressions. But most of the feedback... "She's not physically right for the role." But that was (often enough) accompanied by comments like... 'the best of 80 women we saw', 'total pro', 'funny', 'great hair', 'beautiful face', 'we love her'...
Needless to say, I couldn't get representation to save my life either. After countless meetings a great guy/agent (sadly no longer in the biz) told me, "Casting Directors are having you in just so the producers can hear the material read the way it should be, they are rooting for you, but know you probably won't get hired." I don't think I closed my mouth 'til I got home that day, maybe not even for a couple of days - that hurt! But I needed to hear it!
After a brief period (years) of wallowing and frustration; trying to 'figure' out how the heck to make those necessary and costly changes (?) and continuing to challenge everyone to hire me, I sought work in other aspects of the industry. I had to make a living, and well, the characters I met behind the bar were not serving my purpose... So, I began some major multi-tasking!!! In addition to opening Madcap Management (representing no more than 10 actors for 7 years), I also started working as the assistant to the head of domestic distribution @ Miramax (after just a single day of temp work, was there 2 years, until my boss was replaced and our agreement was null and void). But Bob and Harvey (without knowing it) made is possible for me to establish Show & Tell: "Workshops for the Professional Actor" which I solely operated and performed with my very select members (3 years), worked as casting assistant and/or paid reader for: Jean Scoccimarro, Michael Greer, Jeff Passero, Renita Whited, Aaron Griffith, and Vicki Huff, directed & produced theater, and I did manage to stay on stage most of the time - invited everyone I ever met to every show, and against all odds got a few film and TV roles. I never stopped honing my craft and challenging people in the industry to hire me.
I helped a lot of my peers along the way, was well liked, respected, and was offered some more very lucrative positions: a six figure starting salary to agent @ Epstein/Wyckoff, a show-runner position @ USA, a marketing contract @ Miramax, more casting work, more management collaborations, and was approached by casting and agents to partner up and expand my workshop company. All of which I turned down.
I am so grateful for all of those experiences & opportunities - they gave me clarity. I choose (every day) to pursue acting - because there is absolutely nothing I love more !
I've been written up (full page articles) for almost every business endeavor in: LA Times, Backstage, The Hollywood Reporter, Dramalogue, and 17 South. I won several awards for my stage & film work, with honorable mentions and rave reviews in those publications as well as other local papers and online…
* I was eventually able to make those physical adjustments = pro bono. As life would have it - each obstacle was a blessing. I moved home to NYC in order to introduce myself vs. reintrodcue, only to find the industry confused by my lack of credits. So, I made a very difficult decision in 2016 - opting for Fi-Core union status in order to work on more projects that suited me - mission accomplished! I am pleased to report I have worked more since, than all the years in LA combined, qualify for my insurance, bought a new car, and have money saved :-). I found my niche in the process, have a demo reel I'm proud to share (continue to edit) and full of gratitude for each opporunity I get to do what I love, even those I missed out on (prepared for)!!
Currently residing in Atlanta, GA. Local hire in: Los Angeles, New York, Florida, Texas...
Please stay tuned - there is much more to come... I believe :D