Congratulations on a busy year! You’ve recently wrapped on Mr. Snowman. Can you tell us about that experience and role?
Working on Mr. Snowman was amazing! I had a chance to be a lead on it so it really allowed me to get involved and invested with the project. I can’t say enough about the fantastic cast and crew led by our amazing director, Doug Mitchell. The heart everyone put into it will really show in the finally product.
When did you become an ACTRA member, and what was your first union gig?
I became an ACTRA member in 2012, I believe. The first union project I can remember doing was the second instalment of the Don Cherry Story, The Wrath of Grapes. I played a terrible hockey goalie which was perfect for me because it really showed off my lack of ability to skate.
How has being a member of ACTRA benefited you?
Being an ACTRA member in Manitoba has really helped me build my resume. It put me in the room with productions who may not always look to cast Winnipeg actors. It also protects us from getting taken advantage of by making sure the projects filmed here compensate us with fair pay and treatment. I also believe that even though the focus is on members, building that member pool is important. That means helping out the people working towards joining which I think Manitoba does well.
What has been your favourite or most memorable role thus far?
I don’t know if I have a most memorable role because each role lands me in a different place and helps me grow in a different way. I have always had a great time working with Don Mancini on the Chucky movies. I try to surround myself with people who love what they are creating and that franchise has that in spades. But then in something like Mr. Snowman, playing the romantic lead really helps grow a different side. Plus having a movie my mom can watch where I don’t die is always nice.
How do you stay sharp? Do you have any training suggestions?
I find that the best thing people can do to stay sharp is to always be creating in one way or another. Whether it’s writing, painting, short films, theatre or music – pretty much whatever fills the creative need. I also find that prepping roles or auditions with friends helps to discover deeper layers to a character.
Do you have any advice for other actors out there?
The best advice I can give people is to take care of yourself. You need to be at your best mentally, emotionally, physically whenever you walk into an audition and the easiest way to do that is to treat everyday like it’s an audition day.
If you aren’t always getting cast, start creating your own work. If you don’t know where to start, find someone who is filming something, volunteer and then learn all you can. Go to Fringe, support other artists by going to their shows, get inspired by the endless talent in this city. Put yourself out there and don’t be afraid to fail over and over. When you do, know it’s not failure if you learn from it.