Patrick will be starring in the Last Cyclist at the West End Theater this May - June. Click here for info

Wednesday, March 12, 2014

My Ideal Role And The Awesomeness of Star Trek

I make it no secret that I am a huge fan of Sci-Fi.  Have been my whole life. I blame my parents. Mostly my dad and his curiosity about time travel and space. And his numerous conversations about the possibility of life on other planets and the fact that there were 2 DELOREANS IN 1885! (this last just happened btw)

It's no wonder then that when asked the question about my career and where I see it going, what would my ideal role be, etc...I know the answer.  Sci-Fi. I want to be in a film, tv series, play...anything that allows us to so creatively stretch our imaginations. limitless possibilities when it comes to science fiction.  But there are other reasons besides really liking the genre.

I and my fellow fans are loyal. Insanely loyal. To the characters, to the actors. There is a sense of ownership when watching something within this genre. Look at Firefly. The fans took to the streets to get the show back. And it succeeded. They wanted to see these people, these actors playing these huge characters back. They wanted more stories.  And they got it. They went to bat for these people and won. Watch any panel from any con from any show set in this genre and you will see how loyal the fans are to the show and people that create it. I want to be a part of that. Of something that huge but so personal at the same time.

And speaking of loyalty, it's not only the fans that are loyal. It's the people in charge. I'm going to cite Star Trek specifically because it's been going for so long and some people's careers span the entire life of the Trek Universe, not just one show. It's so nice knowing that productions want to work with people multiple times and do their best to bring them in. I'd feel very fortunate to be cast in a show that would allow me to come back and play with the cast and crew again but as a different character.  It's just a good feeling knowing you're wanted. And we see that a lot within the sci-fi genre and Trek Universe.

Examples? Sure! I'm not making this up. Here ya go. First up is Robin Curtis. who you will all remember as Lt. Saavik from Star Trek III and IV.

Robin Curtis:

Robin inherited the role of Saavik from Kirstie Alley who played the role in Star Trek II.  When her reps demanded more money for the sequels Leonard Nimoy recast out of budgetary necessity.  Welcome aboard Robin.  Robin stayed on for the 2 following sequels, The Search for Spock and The Voyage Home.  But her journey through Star Trek didn't end there. She was brought back for The Next Generation playing another Vulcan (albeit disguised as a Romulan), Tallera in the 2 part episode Gambit.

Next we have Merritt Butrick:

Who you may remember from Star Trek III as Kirk's (SPOILERS!!) Son, David. (Just kidding. If you don't know he's Kirk's son then you need to go back and brush up your Trek)  Sadly, Captain, David is dead by the end of this film. But The Next Generation provided yet another actor with the ability to revisit this universe and play with the Roddenberry's and Co.  He appeared in the episode Symbiosis as the crashing-from-a-drug-induced-high T'Jon.  Sadly that would be the last time he would visit the Trek Universe. But it's great to see that people sat down and thought, he needs more time with us. Get him back here.

And here is Mr....
James Cromwell

James Cromwell has made numerous Trek appearances. Probably best known or portraying the father of warp drive, Zefron Cochrane in TNG film First Contact. He also played Prime Minister Nayrok in the episode 'The Hunted,' and Jaglom Shrek in the episode 'Birthright." The character of Jaglom is almost unrecognizable until he speaks and I had that "A-HA" moment of recognition.
He also appeared in an episode of DS9 as Hanock in "Starship Down."  And of course he reprised his role as Cochrane in the pilot episode of Enterprise, "Broken Bow."  He's, over all, had a great career but in Trek he's all over the place. 3 different series and 1 film within the franchise.

Diana Muldaur

Diana started her association with Star Trek on the original series. She's one of the first actors I can find who was brought back multiple times from the beginning.  In fact she was brought back to play 2 different characters on the original series.  She played Dr. Miranda Jones in the episode 'Is there in Truth No Beauty?' and Ann Mulhall in the episode 'Return to Tomorrow.'  She was brought back many years later to portray Dr. Pulaski for 20 episodes on The Next Generation. Both the original and Next Gen! 

Lastly we have the Mother of Star Trek
Majel Barrett

It's hard to write out Majel's involvement in Trek because there has been so much. Perhaps she's an unfair example being that her husband was Gene and all. But still.  Her career in the Trek universe spans from the original series through today. From Nurse Chapel to the voice of the computer. She also lent her voice to the animated series in the 70's. She popped up in the movies, sometimes disapprovingly shaking her head at the damage inflicted upon the Enterprise as well as a promoted Commander. In the Next Generation she played Troi's mother, Lwaxana and voiced the computer. That may be her most enduring and lasting gift to the series, as the voice of the computer. It's allowed her to be in every Trek series so far, except for the newest film reboots.

This post mainly pertains to Trek and how they loyally bring back actors to reprise or create roles. But within the genre of Sci-Fi there are MANY actors who find them selves type-cast for those stories. I could write a lot more about all the actors whose resumes read like the table of contents for an H.G. Wells collected works. Ben Browder is a great example. Take a look at his IMDb page. GO on. From Farscape to Stargate to The Justice League and on to Dr. Who, he's made a career I envy (partly cause of the Who) because he's found a home for himself within the science-fiction realm and is enjoying doing it. 

So what would my dream role be? Or my ideal career? Give me a phaser and a green screen and tell me where to look. I could do that all day, every day and never be bored.

*Anyone reading this with any actual connection to anyone casting anything long these alines, I'll give you anything*


Wednesday, January 22, 2014

I. MIller Shoes Building Restoration

I haven't posted in months. That's bad of me. And I should probably do a full on update for the past 6-7 months.  In brief, I went from a concentration camp inmate, to a pirate, to another concentration camp inmate, to Jesus.  All in all, typical.

But for now, here is this little but of happiness on a cold snowy NY day. 

As actors this building is a pretty typical part of our daily/weekly lives. It's right on the corner of Broadway and 46th. I've always affectionately called it the "Equity Building" because until recently the entrance to Actors Equity was right next to it. Granted it's not the same building, but it's sure close. And it was originally a shoe store supplying shoes for the performing arts and specifically the actors and dancers on Broadway.
The inscription below the Building's actual name is, "the show folks’ shoe shop dedicated to beauty in footwear." Just cluing you in to what they sold there. 

On the 46th street side of the building, half way up you could always see four ladies greeting you as you walk past to audition. They're statues of four of the entertainment industry's greats. Ethel Barrymore (Drama), Marilyn Miller (Musical Comedy), Rosa Ponselle (Opera), and Mary Pickford  (Film).  They're all dressed as their iconic characters that helped cement their stardom.  Sadly through the years the building has deteriorated and those statues have started to erode or have been covered with billboards, etc. In fact, poor Miss Barrymore has had half her face hidden behind a HUGE billboard for T.G.I. Fridays.

Well, welcome to 2014. The Fridays is out. Gone. And in it's place an Express.  But an Express that decided to restore some of the building's former glory. In a HUGE restoration effort, the facade of both the Broadway and the 46th street sides of the building have been restored and repaired. The Statues are back and completely fixed, the store front is clean and looks almost out of place now in a modern Times square.  

But I love it! These are my ladies greeting me on my way to auditions, and this is such a great way to show respect to the business that built Times Square and one I have devoted my life to. 

I managed to snap a picture while rushing to another audition recently. It's not great, but if you've seen the building in the past you know it's MUCH better now. The gentleman selling pretzels and hot dogs across the street from me said it cost about 6 million. But I have no idea where he got those numbers from. He probably thought I was a tourist and was trying to impress me into buying a cold unsalted pretzel...(I didn't)

So here is the best shot I could take at the time. If there is interest, perhaps I'll take more.  But for now, here you are.

Friday, July 19, 2013

The Scam that is Explore Talent

I'm sure I've written about this in the past. I am too lazy to search my archives for a related post.  So I'll just talk about the last week of annoyances from Explore Talent. I had a profile on Explore Talent 5 or 6 years ago. I realized it was pretty useless after about a year or so. I deactivated my profile. I was getting no work. And it was just a repeat of notices that were readily available everywhere else.

Well, I've started getting text messaged from them within this past week saying thing along these lines:

Here is the problem with this. This is meant to lure people in. You think, "Oh man! A part for me?" You call in and the operator will tell you that in order to submit you for this project you have to sign up for an account with ET. Which is way more expensive than it should be. Especially compared to the other casting sites out there which are MUCH cheaper.  

So looking at this notice right away alarms should tell you that no one is going to cast for a major film via text. Also a little research will uncover that this is most likely in reference to "33." The film she is in pre-production for about 33 miners trapped in a mine. Probably not filming in NYC. So why are they texting me? Oh yeah, to get me back into their fold for $$$$.

A little more staring at this and you'll realize the rate. They can't just claim here is how much you'll get! Because really, again, who is casting through this.  

So to sum this up. They spam people, those people call in thinking...what an amazing opportunity, and then shell out moola to join this site in order to be submitted for parts that are either already cast, or just would never be cast in this way.  It's a scam. A total scam. It's horrible.  I cannot stand how people in our business are always being targeted as fools and being taken advantage of.

I called them. Yes I did, thank you very much. And basically said, I ended my account years ago, why am I being spammed with misleading text messages.  Of course they tried to defend themselves, but the texts are EXTREMELY misleading and it's pretty much spam. I did not ask to receive these. I did not sign up for them. If I had in the past, I have clearly made it known that I don't want to receive them by, you know, deactivating my account.

After being transferred from person to person I was finally able to get my information purged from their system.  I hope.  Moral of the story is to steer clear of Explore Talent. It's such a slimy, skeezey, sketchy...and other "s" words, website.  They're in the business to make money off of actors. Not to help actors get work.

Instead look at Actors Access
Backstage if you must (but it's also got it's issues)

Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Animal Planet's Top Hooker Season 2

So this just popped up in my email and I had to share. It took me several minutes of staring at it before I realized what it was really for.

Top Hooker Season 2!

Project Name:Animal Planet's Top Hooker Season 2 Casting (USA)

RoleRole TypeGender/Age/EthnicitiesDescription/Note
Professional, Sport & Recreational FishermenLeadMale or Female / 21 to 42 / All EthnicitiesWe are looking for COMPETITIVE, OUTGOING and SKILLED anglers, spear fishermen, game fishermen, fly fishermen, trawlers and trappers from all walks of life. It doesn't matter if your experience is commercial, sport or recreational. As long as you're skilled, adaptable and confident enough to take on anything we throw at you, you could win A BIG GRAND PRIZE and the title of Animal Planet's next Top Hooker.

Thursday, April 18, 2013

Bloggity Blog Updates

So this isn't much of a hey look at me and what's going on post. It's more of a "I've gotten tired of looking at my blog and feeling it's a mess and beyond my control to clean up."

I'm not sure why I felt that way. Maybe because I always feel like I just barely have control over whats going on around me. Acting is like being an experimental air craft pilot. I'm like the Hal Jordan of the acting world. know, without a green ring and stranded alien giving me special powers...I digress.

Out of control. Yes yes. Most of the time I feel like everything is just barely being contained or just on the verge of blowing up. So those few things I do have control over, I've decided to give them my all.  This blog being one of them!  So I hope you all like the cleaner look and updated format.

What did I do?  Deleted a few unnecessary things and will continue to reformat a few of the things on the side bars.  I've also added a pretty swift little navigation/menu bar. Whatever you want to call it.
It's got links to my headshots on here, my reel, and 25 cents for love.  Not to mention a link to the official site cause I know you people love going there and refreshing the shit out of your browser to keep up with all my goings on.

Don't lie. I know you do that...err...I do that.

So look around. If you're here then you've probably already seen all this but I welcome feedback!

I'm an actor, give me notes damnit! Or good press. One or t'other.

More to come soon though. Got some SHOW news to broadcast.

In the mean time I'll leave you with this little tidbit from the Museum of the Moving Image*. Which is an amazing place and everyone should go visit. It's such a great trip through the history of film making from all aspects, not just the actors. But everyone involved in making a movie from start to finish.

This exists. Somewhere. Out there. People made this. And other people bought this.
Good night everyone.

*If you're a member of SAG-AFTRA you and a friend get in for what's keeping you?

Tuesday, April 2, 2013

READINGS! The way to keep busy when you're slow

Readings Galore!

When you're between projects what do you do? How do you fill the spaces between shows and films?

READINGS!  Theater companies have readings ALL the time to try out material for their upcoming seasons, as part of nights where they feature playwrights, or just to hear plays read. Production companies and writers themselves will also organize readings of potential works to be made.  So, that's how I've been filling the empty spaces right now between project.

The first set of readings I did were with the amazing company Theatre East.

A dear friend (Darlene!!!!!!!!) appeared in one of their productions last season, Normalcy, and it was by far one of the best things I've seen on stage in a long time. Smart Smart Darlene has done what all good little actors should do and has cultivated a loving relationship with this company.  (Honestly how could you not. The Husband and Wife duo who run it make you feel more welcomed and a part of the ensemble than many a family gathering.)  So it was with great joy that I jumped at the chance to read a part in Darlene's play, Property, at one of their new works reading nights.  It's like a stress free audition. How can you go wrong with that? Twas a great night of words and beer and making new friends. (And hopefully connections)

That hopefully turned into a...nailed it! Shortly after the reading I was contacted by Judson Jones, the Artistic Director to read a new play by the daughter of Dominic Chianese, the actor who portrayed Uncle Junior in the Soprano's.  Why would any one say no?  In their defense the action centers around an Italian neighborhood and I say more? It was a small part, but another good night of reading. Having people hear my voice say these words.  It was a simple table read so of course it was rough in some places (talking about my own delivery) but who cares. They called me back to read some more!  You can bet a thank you is on the way.

The next reading I was invited to take part in was of Chekov's Cherry Orchard with the American Bard Theater Company.

First of I have to say that I love the idea of going back to American Globe, which is where Amer. Bard is currently residing. There is such a feeling of going home. Of being home. In a space that I've only worked a few times, but fell in love with. Both companies are filled with people who look at you and smile, instantly accept you, and want you to succeed. You'd think that would be the case everywhere, but it's not. So no wonder I feel like I'm home when I'm there. 

With American Bard I was asked to read a part in a very casual round table read of the Cherry Orchard. (Which to me is a ridiculous comedy. The people in it are honestly ridiculous save for one person. But of course no one listens to them.) I'll also say that sometimes reading the classics on your own is a chore. A chore among chores. For one who is a Shakespearephile, it's stilll so difficult to get me to sit down and read some of these older plays.  But to sit in a circle and see and hear the characters come to life? Sign me up. 

Plus it doesn't help that I feel as if I helped with the planning of their upcoming season. (even if I really didn't, it's nice to feel important)

I'd like to say this is how I ALWAYS spend my down time between projects, but that would be a lie. Ideally this is what I would do to keep the creative acting juices flowing. But you can't really plan your life out like that. 

So after all that, who spends their downtime how? How do you fill the spaces between projects?

Thursday, March 28, 2013

When Smaller Agents Call You In...

Are people just rude because it gives them some kind of self satisfaction? A misplaced feeling of power?  I really don't get it!

I'm pretty sure we're all in agreement that this business is hard.  Much harder than anyone ever truly is able to convey.  (One thing my professors lacked was the ability to tell us all what we were getting into. Thank you professors for dropping that ball...that energy ball...)
That being said, shouldn't we all be in this together more or less?

I was contacted by an agency in PA recently.  (Those clever few of you who know me better than others can guess who)  I had not reached out to them. As far as I know I hadn't. Like all good actors I keep my log of mail outs and submissions.  So they reached out to me.

First off, PA. It's not my market. It's not too difficult to get there.  And I know plenty of people who do that trek on a regular basis. Hell, I know plenty of people who travel in from Long Island which at times could be just as much of a journey as the train to PA. So it's not unheard of.  Ideally I would rather not go there but it's an option.

So I replied to their email with some simple questions. Mostly logistics.
Do you ever send your clients to auditions in NY (my primary market)?
Is there a sister or affiliated agency in NY you could refer me to if PA isn't too viable an option?
And of course lots of thank-you's.

The reply was 2 lines. Essentially saying they represent people in the tri-state area.  Which I knew, but thanks. And to re-apply when I'm ready to travel to PA.
Thank you but no thank you. There are ways to say things and this was not it. It's a smaller market anyway and will not do much to push my career forward. I looked at it as just a possible something extra to have in my corner, but I feel like they're the kind of agency that just sends people out for whatever, over-saturating auditions until someone books it and they can get their commission.

Don't need em.
Don't want them.

But can't we just be a little nicer to people out there? Anyone else ever have issues with these smaller boutique agencies acting like this? As I write I also think it's an attitude they adopt because they think it's how the big agencies like Abrams operate.

**This is also a lesson in 'Trust your Gut. Nearly all of the comments online about this agency are negative. The only positive ones are THEY THEMSELVES defending their reputation. Red flag anyone? Way to help that reputation.