Monday, May 14, 2018

What now?

Well, I just turned 73 years old and what to do now? My acting career is just about over. I was cast in a 2 character play that did not have a director but I thought the writing had some merit, so even though it was to be done as part of a Fringe festival, and that is what it is, the fringe of show business. Being that there was no director and also that I did not feel that this young women who was listed as the writer actually wrote the piece, there was some very perceptive insights into older man ways and thinking ,that she was not that intelligent. So I took it upon myself to pick the other actor because on this fringe level, I was afraid she would get some inadequate actor and for a 2 character play with 50 pages of dialogue, I did not want to take the chance.

So, because I am out of touch with actors, I called on the one actor that I was still in touch with and was adequate enough. I never really liked the guy, always felt he was jealous of me because I had a decent career and he did not. Well, my worst fears about this guy came true, I couldn't stand to be around him but I thought I would stick it out . Not to go into details but I had an idea about solving a problem that the play had. The story was about this guy hoarding for many years. Under the Fringe rules, the play had to be struck after every performance as the next 1 act play was to go on. So, I thought,it would be impossible to create the enviorment under the Fringe guidelines so I thought, why not mime everything and leave it up to the audiences imagination to create the enviorment in their mind.

Well, the other actor, that I cast, said he was against it, without even trying it out to see if it can work. We had a argument and the writer decided to recast my role. I think, I wanted out anyway because it was not fun with this guy and the writer did not have a clue. The

Tuesday, October 18, 2016

our lady of 121 street

Been doing a play for the last few weeks, our lady of 121 st at the victory theater kin burbank. The part of vice ranting against the world at a funeral.

The part gives me the opportunity to step onthe accelerate like I used to do back in the day in NY. The parts of had in la have been in second gear, not only tv and films but even theater out here. So while I am not the lead, no one that sees this play will forget me.nice to be around calls these young people as I ma more than double the age of most of them and that includes the crew. Had some problems with some but most of all I get along 0with most and am enjoying myself.

So maybe someone will offer me a real job off this otherwise, it could be the last as I will not pursue but will take all offers.

Who becomes an actor?

There seems to be 2 types of actors that inhabit the Hollywood TV & Film culture.

TYPE A : These are the actors that pursue acting for the love of the acting itself. To make dialogue written by someone else and make it your own. To be a king, a bum, a killer or even a president or pope. Happy to do this every night for 2 hours on stage, using a child like ability " to make believe".

Once the acting but bites, they are in it for life. To make a living as an actor is complete success for these actors. If stardom comes, they will take the money but always gravitate toward projects that stimulate their imagination and acting talent.

TYPE B: Many of these pick acting or theater because it is the easiest coarse. They do a couple of amateur plays in college and feel their live theater experience is complete. After college, they head straight for Los Angeles, Ca. to pursue an acting career and hopefully be chased by paparazzi as they go by in their limo. Most end up waiting tables or leave La ,broken.

But many stay and clutter the market so much , that many directors of a list films are forced to cast theater actors from other countries in American characters because these days most actors are type b and do not have the acting skills to properly portray the character.

While many type a's have lucrative careers, many are uncomfortable with the pandering that is required in Hollywood.

Sunday, June 22, 2014

My Final Curtain

I am writing my epitaph for my acting career. It has been a long journey from 1973 when I walked into my first acting class.Since then, I have 20 years vested in screen actors guild, which means I have a pension and medical insurance for the rest of my life. I have raised my daughter on money I made as an actor.I still get residuals for work I have done over the years.But alas, acting work has been very scarce the last 5 years since my agents retired and I lost good representation. At 69 years old, even with good agents, the parts are rare.

I was trying till recently to get back on the fast track. I did leads in short films, did live theater and received good feedback and recognition as a seasoned actor. Unfortunately, these were deferred projects, which means you don't get paid, and none of them had the juice to propel me  to the fast track, 'and back in the room'.

I know that if I can get auditions, with directors and producers for A list movies and tv, I would, like  before, get  work. but now caught in that catch-22, can't get good auditions without a good agent and can't get a good agent without a job.. Most actors start their career with that dilemma but I don't have 40 years in front of me anymore but behind me.

So, why now,I was recently cast in a revival of Arther Miller's ' a View from the Bridge' to play Alfieri, the lawyer. If you are familiar with the play, you know that Alfieri is a very difficult part and vital to the play. The production was going to be at 'the Stella Adler' acting studio. I was very excited to do this play. Theater has not been an ally of mine like it was in New York. this was a part that could show the industry how good I really was and not just a type.

I was cast in the play on march 30 2014, we had one sit down reading in April and were to take the rest of April and May off and begin rehearsals in June and open in August. While waiting, I worked on the part, not only the lines but I thought about my character, things that the play doesn't give about his inner life. I told people about it as it was the only acting  I had to talk about. Well, a couple of days before we were to start rehearsal, I get a mass email from the producer that they were denied the rights to do 'a view from the bridge',the show was off..

That was it, a lousy email, no phone call, nothing and all my hopes for this ,crushed. So what now, I will not spend anymore money on acting, no pictures and resumes , no workshops or classes and most of all, no actor hangouts. I refuse to be just another out of work actor hustling to get one line in something here and there.I will not get on my knees and beg for crumbs. In these actor hangouts, bars, coffee shops etc. , most actors ask you how you are doing and hope you have bad news. tell them you have a good gig and you can see the hate in their faces. not all but most.

I still love the act of acting, i looked forward to doing ' a view from the bridge', not only what it could do for my career but to do a great part in front of an audience is one of the best pleasures I have had in my life. I will concentrate more on my writing and my youtube channel.If you wish to read my whole story, start at the beginning of this blog.

So, I will slowly fade from the scene. good bye.

Update, I am currently involved with 2 plays. Running right now at the Whitefire theater, I am doing Mark Finks Smart People and then I will be doing " Our Lady of 121 Street", which opens May 1. I am doing them because I enjoy acting for it'S own sake. If someone offers me a job from this,I would be open to it.

Sunday, March 16, 2014

Diamonds in the Rough

I want to talk about this abundance of untrained and often untalented people that migrate to Los Angeles dreaming of having a career in acting. I say not only untrained but naive because if they had gone through the theater in New york, Chicago or a another country where theater is taken seriously, they would have found out, before too much of a investment in time and money, that they have no talent.

Now, some come to La without much theater training or experience but have a natural talent. They have a chance to have some kind of career if they work on their craft, have some luck and enjoy the act of acting. Enjoying the act of acting, to some, acting is torture, they feel naked and exposed on stage. Their motive for going into acting is to walk on the red carpet, get their picture taken by photographers as they pass in their limo. without much talent these people are destined to work as servers in eating establishment to be able to pay their bills. They believe that their time will come if they just stick it out. The business is hard enough if you have talent but without it you are doomed to a life of anguish and disappointment.

Universities offer degrees in acting to anyone who applies and is able to borrow the money to pay the tuition. The teachers are not professionals in the business and have only a academic knowledge of acting technique and the theater.

On a side note, nowadays theater is only one of the worthless degrees given out by the universities , as they put these young people in debt for many years to pay for the bloated salaries of inept professors.

The acting world provides a variety of acting workshops, agent showcases and classes by charlatans that have never worked as professionals and will never tell a paying customer that they are wasting their time. This gives the untalented and untrained a false feeling of accomplishment.

But what about those diamonds in the rough that don't have a theater background from the major theater centers. There is help for them if they have the desire to learn. Below is a link to a video that will give the essentials of acting technique. Study these and you may have a chance.

Acting secrets revealed