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"Call Me Adam" chats with...

 

 

Saturday
May012010

Sydney Park

Photo Credit: Don PtashneSydney Park is yet another next generation actress who's star is rising! At just 6 years old, she was the youngest person to ever perform stand-up comedy at the Hollywood Improv and by age 7, she had the character of "Sydney" written specifically for her on Disney's "That's So Raven," starring Raven Symone. Since then, Sydney has had roles on "Entourage," "Hannah Montana," "The Sarah Silverman Program," and "Gary Unmarried." She also performed her stand-up comedy on "The Tonight Show," "America's Got Talent," and "Chelsea Lately." Currently, Sydney can be seen in "Spork" (directed by fellow "Adaumbelle's Quest" participant J.B. Ghuman Jr) premiering at the Tribeca Film Festival through May 1.

1. Who inspired you to become a performer? My parents because they never really got a chance to do what they wanted to do when they were young due to tough situations. My mom used to work at the Hollywood Improv as a Server and I would always come and hang out with the comics. I was only 6 years old when I decided to write a 3-minute set and hit the stage doing stand-up comedy. I became the youngest comedian ever at the Hollywood Improv. Only cool parents that let you do that! They are so loving and they let me be free to be me! I've always wanted to be an entertainer. I was born with the fever – acting, stand-up, dance, singing - it’s in my blood.

2. Who is the one person you haven't worked with that you would like to? Wow – one person huh? I’d have to say Meryl Streep. She’s a master! My goal is to memorize all her scenes from "The Devil Wears Prada" – she is phenomenal! I love everything she does.

3. If you couldn't be doing what you are doing now, what career would you choose? I would choose to be a person that creates charity organizations for the children of the world. I have such compassion for families that go to bed hungry. I would love to do that someday. I must give back. No more hungry kids!

4. What has been the best advice you've received? When I do stand-up, I still get nervous before I go onstage. I would say, “What if I bomb?” or “What of I get heckled?” and my parents would pull me to the side and say “Baby, just make it to the mic!” It’s so true! The scariest thing to me is the walk to the stage – it seems so long for some reason. Once I’m up there, the world is mine! Great advice from my peeps. I use that for everything I do that might be difficult.

5. Starbucks or Dunkin' Donuts? What do you order? That’s easy – Starbucks fo sho’! Don’t get me wrong, Dunkin' Donuts can be off the hook too, but Starbucks is my jam. I order a grande vanilla bean with a decaf shot and whipped cream of course!

6. Favorite meal? Artichokes with butter and my mom’s “Black Mama Chicken” – with BBQ sauce and onions. Mmmmm….Good for the soul!

7. Favorite skin care product? Clean & Clear (Foaming Facial Cleanser). That keeps my skin clean and oil-free. Plus, it’s inexpensive!

8. Favorite TV Show? "Spongebob Squarepants" and "Glee." I would be nothing without these shows!

9. Favorite website? Etsy.com – the best website in the world! You can buy anything on this site….and I mean anything!

10. Superman or Wonder Woman? I prefer Wonder Woman. I hate to be so obvious, but come on, she’s a beautiful chick that is strong and independent.

BONUS QUESTIONS:

11. Favorite store to shop in? I actually have two stores – Forever 21 and H&M.  I love their clothes and the prices super cool, plus I’m on a budget!

12. Favorite quote? “You are my glue and without you I’m nothing but broken pieces” I found this one on the iPod – free quotes app. I feel this way about my best friend Nya and my parents. Kind of mushy – I know, but so me :)

Friday
Apr302010

Rachel Fox

Rachel Fox is another one of our next generation performers on the rise! It's no wonder that she crosses many genres and generations with her television, film, music, theatre, and fashion talents! Rachel's first break into television was playing the recurring character of "Buffy" on the hit Disney TV show "That's So Raven" starring Raven Symone. Her gig on "That's So Raven" lead to roles on Disney's mega-hit "Hannah Montana" and the daytime Soap Opera "Passions."  It wasn't long after these gigs that Rachel made the leap into prime time television landing the roles of "Young Sydney" on "Alias" starring Jennifer Garner and Victor Garber and "Kayla Huntington" (the illegitimate daughter of “Tom Scavo,” played by Doug Savant) on ABC's smash-hit "Desperate Housewives."  In addition to television, Rachel has also starred in theatre productions of "Santa Goes Commercial," "The Sound of Music," "I Remember Mamma," "Cinderella," "Alice in Wonderland," and "The Wizard of Oz." Currently, Rachel can be seen in the new movie "Spork" (directed by fellow "Adaumbelle's Quest" participant J.B. Ghuman Jr.) which premiered at the Tribeca Film Festival and is running through May 1. Rachel is also working on her debut album and as well as hosting a Fashion Blog on her website, giving fashion advice while detailing the latest looks.  For much more on Rachel, be sure to visit: http://www.rachelgfox.com.

1. Who inspired you to become a performer? When I was 5, I was in a play and it was love at first performance. I guess it was the act of acting that inspired me to become a performer. Each time I performed after that, whether it was for a photo shoot, a commercial, a voiceover, a tv show, or a movie, my passion for the acting grew and continues to grow. Along the way, there have been so many people who inspired me, but my first and strongest inspiration has come from performing itself.

2. Who is the one person you haven't worked with that you would like to? There are so many. I’ve gotta sneak in an a couple of extras. The actor I’d love to work with is Meryl Streep. She is pure brilliance. Every time I watch her, I forget about all her previous characters and about who she is as a person. She commands every moment, creates her characters so they’re real, and she stays in character. She was genius in "The Devil Wears Prada" and in "Julie & Julia." The second person I’d like to work with is Garry Marshall, the director of my favorite movie, "Pretty Woman." I’d also love to work with Rob Reiner, who directed "A Few Good Men" and  "Princess Bride," among other amazing movies.

3. If you couldn't be doing what you are doing now, what career would you choose? This is my only choice. Acting, performing, playing music, dancing, and singing. It’s my only choice. If I have to choose something, which I’m saying I don’t want to but I will to answer this good question, my choice for another career if I wasn’t me is to be a venture capitalist. I’d like to take a look at different businesses that are really cool ideas and have great people running them, and invest money in those companies that I think are going to be very successful. I am not interested in owning any one single business, but investing in other ones. The stock market is interesting to me but it feels like I have to gamble and I don’t have control over a stock’s price. I’m not comfortable with letting other people decide if my money amount goes up or down.

4. What has been the best advice you've received? The best advice I’ve ever received is to become whatever I passionately want to become. My mom and dad have taught me to do what I was born to do, no matter what other people say or no matter what the obstacles are. Their advice has given me strength and laser focus.

5. Starbucks or Dunkin' Donuts? What do you order? Starbucks. We don’t have many, if any, Dunkin’ Donuts here in LA. I always order sugar-free, non-fat hazelnut frappachino, without whipped cream. I love their lemon bread and their coffee cake.

6. Favorite meal? I am a food lover! I never met a meal I didn’t love, except maybe liver. I’d have to say sushi, crab cakes, Chunky soup, and Lean Cuisines are my favorite meals. My most recent best sushi experience was at an incredible Japanese restaurant named “Ki.” The sushi was the freshest and best tasting and they had different kinds. One had asparagus and shrimp in a rice paper and I could have eaten 10 of them.

7. Favorite skin care product? I have sensitive skin. I use Murad cleanser for sensitive skin, BeautiControl toner that they don’t make anymore so I buy all the still-existing bottles from ebay, St. Ives apricot scrub, and Neutrogena oil-free moisturizer.

8. Favorite TV Show? This question is impossible to answer because I love so many tv shows for different reasons and so they all tie for first because they’re all great. Here they are in no special order....That 70s Show, Desperate Housewives, Glee, George Lopez, Fresh Prince, American Idol.

9. Favorite website? My favorite website is www.ultimate-guitar.com. I go there to learn new songs on guitar. Can I give you my website in this answer?  www.rachelgfox.com. I have a Fashion Blog and I answer questions that people write to me on my Ask the Fox page.

10. Superman or Wonder Woman? Not my generation…I know a little about Superman and I don’t think I’ve ever seen Wonder Woman so I’ll wait to know more about them before I answer.

BONUS QUESTIONS:

11. Favorite store to shop in? My favorite department store is Nordstroms. Their junior department has great clothes and shoes. My favorite store for dresses is bcbg. It stands for Bon Chic Bon Genre and it means good style, good taste. My SAG Awards dresses are from bcbg and the dress I wore to the Tribeca Film Festival (yeah!) is a bcbg dress. They have very unique dresses that fit me well.

12. Favorite quote?

I have two:

“Don’t waste your time living someone else’s life. Don’t be trapped by dogma, which is living with the results of other people’s thinking. Have the courage to follow your heart and intuition. They somehow already know what you truly want to become.” – Steve Jobs

“Pick a job that you love and you’ll never work a day in your life.” – Author unknown

Sunday
Apr252010

Max von Essen

Max von Essen is one of those performers who has it all...the voice, the talent, and most of all the personality. When Max von Essen sings, you never want it to end and when he's on stage, he's the focal point of the action. Starting his career off with a boom, he was a back-up singer on tour with the one and only Liza Minnelli and his star has continued to shine brightly. On Broadway, Max has starred in both the original and revival of "Les Miserables," "Dance of The Vampires" starring Michael Crawford, and the 2000 revival of "Jesus Christ Superstar." He also starred in "Jerry Springer: The Opera" at Carnegie Hall, "Finian's Rainbow" at the Irish Repertory Theatre, and "The Fantasticks" at the Sullivan Street Playhouse. Max has been in regional productions of "The Baker's Wife" at the Paper Mill Playhouse and "Mame" at The Kennedy Center. Other theatre credits includes productions of "Girl Crazy," "Sweeney Todd," "Dorian," "Pirates of Penzance," "My Fair Lady," "Hair," and "Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat." When Max is not performing in a show, he's dedicating his time to many charities close to his heart including Broadway Cares/Equity Fights AIDS and The Matthew Shephard Foundation. Currently, Max is skating around the country in the national tour of "Xanadu" as Sonny Malone, so be sure to check him out when he rolls into your town. For more on Max, be sure to check out his website http://www.maxvonessen.com.

1. Who inspired you to become a performer? All my teachers (and old movie musicals!!!)

2. What is the highest and lowest note you can sing? Haha, my range? Well, I'm a baritone so I have like a low G and then I can sing up to an A above middle C. But I have an odd falsetto and have played "Mary Sunshine" in "Chicago" and "Tremont" in "Jerry Springer The Opera," so I've had to go up another octave and sing high A's and B's in the soprano range.

3. Who is the one person you haven't worked with that you would like to? Oh god, there are so many! I'd love to work on broadway with Brian D'Arcy James in something and in a movie someday with Meryl Streep. I mean, could you imagine?

4. What's the best advice someone ever gave you? "Follow your bliss." An older friend told me that when I was a teenager, and it guides me constantly.

5. What is your proudest moment? That is such a difficult question. My proudest moment is simply every time I feel like I'm living my life as a decent human being. That may seem cliché but it's true. It's not about booking the next big job or anything for me, but at this point in my life, I just strive to be a good friend, son, brother and uncle.

6. Favorite way to stay in shape? Eight shows a week. Other than that, I hardly work out. I hate it!!!!

7. Boxers or Briefs? Boxer Briefs. Although now that I mostly wear skinny jeans, I usually wear briefs. :-)

8. Favorite skin care product? Haha, good old Cetaphil cleanser, Kiehl's Eye Alert, and Mac Studio Fix! Must haves!

9. Favorite website? None that I can tell you about. Well, other than Facebook and Twitter. (I'm slightly obsessed).

10. Superman or Wonder Woman? SUPERMAN all the way!!!!

BONUS QUESTIONS:

11. Books or Magazines? I love magazines. But I really should read books more. Grrrrr.

12. Favorite TV Show Theme Song? Easy...The Nanny!!!!! Love it!

Wednesday
Apr212010

J.B. Ghuman Jr.

JB Ghuman is an artist of many genres...from paint-on-canvas to installation art to acting to writing/directing, JB is creating his world and allowing us in, so keep watching! Originally from Miami, FL, JB Ghuman, Jr. moved to New York City to be an artist focusing on paint-on-canvas and installation art. He then decided to move out to LA to pursue a career in acting and after doing national commercial spots, film, and television, JB decided to switch it up and go behind the camera. He's produced his own shorts that he wrote and directed and soon after, he was directing music videos for such high profile artists as RuPaul. His first feature film is "Spork," premiering at the Tribeca Film Festival in New York City from April 24-May 1. Heart-felt and inspiring, this film is one I would recommend! For tickets, click here! For lots more on JB, be sure to visit his website: http://www.1111entertainment.tv.

1. Who inspired you to become an actor as well as a writer/director? As an actor, Johnny Depp in "Edward Scissorhands" and Gary Oldman in "Brahm Stoker's Dracula." As a writer/director my triple threat is Todd Solondz's "Welcome to the Dollhouse" for his witty dialogue and funny story; John Waters for his characters which are super colorful, bright, and bigger than life; and Tim Burton's vision which I've been dying to emulate.

2. Who is the person you haven't worked with that you would like to, both as an actor as well as a director/writer? I'd love to direct Johnny Depp and Gary Oldman, but I'd love to act with Pee Wee Herman (a.k.a. Paul Ruebens) and get the rights to "Pee Wee's Playhouse." I loved his show, his world, and his magic. I think we should do a hard comedy movie.

3. Is there ever a time you thought about quitting? If so, what career would you choose? I've never thought about quitting, but possibly changing jobs. I moved to New York from Miami to be an installation artist, then headed out to LA to pursue acting. As an actor your job is to emulate someone else's vision and pull it onto yourself, but what pulled me from being an actor to a writer/director is the same notion as being an installation artist--creating my own world. It would also be great to be a gallery owner or curator, like in "Beetlejuice" and show these crazy sculptures.

4. What's your proudest moment? Your questions are really heavy handed. I like this. I normally answer questions about sports :)  I would have to say my proudest moment would be what happened at my stepfather's funeral. My stepfather, who basically raised me, recently passed away and at his funeral I saw my biological father who I hadn't seen in about 3 years because we've been estranged due to my sexuality. At my stepfather's funeral I talked about how incredible my stepfather was because he raised me and how much I loved him and my biological mother. I then took the opportunity to talk to my biological father. I told him that I loved him and how lucky I was to have 2 fathers. After telling him this, I felt incredibly light and free, like a weight was lifted. Even though things are back to the way they were before my stepfather's funeral, I still feel good about having the opportunity to tell my biological dad my feelings.

5. What's the best advice you've given someone, but not taken for yourself? Wow, you are totally "Oprahing" it. You're bringing me to tears here. The best advice I give is "Take your time." Especially with the passing of my stepfather recently, you never know whats around tomorrow, so everything you do in life enjoy, pace yourself, and don't rush into or out of anything. Just take your time and enjoy every experience.

6. If you could dream about anyone while you sleep, who would it be? Wow. These questions are pretty cool. I would say myself as a kid because that was the happiest time in my life.

7. Favorite way to stay in shape? Surfing and break dancing hands down. They're my favorite way to sweat. I used to be a b-boy (break dancer) in Miami and was in competitions for like 4 years, so for me dancing is definitely one of the most fun ways to stay in shape.

8. Boxers or Briefs? Boxers...I like a little room. It's hot out here in California :)

9. Favorite website? This is not ikea.com and yours, of course!

10. Superman or Wonder Woman? Wonder Woman-she's fierce! Anyone who can fly an invisible plane so everyone can see what your wearing everyday takes courage. Plus, she has that magic lasso to make everyone tell the truth.

BONUS QUESTIONS:


11. Favorite hobby? I have roof access in the condo I live in in LA and I like to sit on my roof at night, usually between 2am and 4am and get lost in the city just watching the traffic lights blink on and off. It's the best time to just sit, think, or write.

12. Do you have any strange or unusual talent that no one knows about? I can wiggle my ears.

Sunday
Apr182010

Rory O'Malley

Rory O'Malley is a performer on the rise...He is best known for playing "Dave" in the motion picture "Dreamgirls," stealing the song "Cadillac Car" from Eddie Murphy. Rory made his Broadway debut in "The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee" and just made his Off-Broadway debut in "NEWSical the Musical." (which was produced by fellow "Adaumbelle's Quest" participant Tom D'Angora and starred fellow participant Christine Pedi as well as upcoming participants Christine Bianco & Michael West). Regionally, he created the role of "Richie Cunningham" in Garry Marshall's "Happy Days: The Musical" at the Goodspeed Opera House, Paper Mill Playhouse and recorded the original cast album. Rory is also the co-founder of "Broadway Impact" (along with two-time Tony Award Nominee and fellow "Adaumbelle's Quest" participant Gavin Creel), a coalition of the theatre community fighting for marriage equality. To keep up with Rory and all he has going on, be sure to follow him on Twitter!

1. Who inspired you to become a performer? My Aunt Peggy when I was eight.  She cast me as Saint Joseph in our church's Christmas pageant. Probably my only opportunity to take advantage of nepotism in the business :)

2. Who is the one person you haven't worked with that you would like to? Audra McDonald.

3. Do you have any strange or unusual talent that no one knows about? I can make my hands look like they are made of rubber by shaking them fast. It's on my resume. RUBBER HANDS!

4. Favorite way to stay in shape? Love to run, but fellow "NEWSical" cast member Michael West has gotten me into P90X.  So hard!

5. Boxers or Briefs? Briefs.

6. Favorite TV Show? "MAD MEN" on AMC and "THE UNIVERSE" on The History Channel.

7. Books or Magazines? Magazines.

8. Favorite meal? Mac and Cheese.

9. Favorite website? I read Andrew Sullivan's blog "The Daily Dish" almost hourly. I'm a political junkie :)

10. "Family Ties" or "Growing Pains"? "Growing Pains."

BONUS QUESTIONS:

11. Favorite way to spend your day off? Movie Marathons.

12. Summer Resort or Winter Retreat? Summer Resort even though I need sunscreen with an SPF of 100.

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