The character you play Belise is quite the off the wall person. Tell
us a little about her, and how you prepared yourself to fill her shoes.
Belise is that "kooky aunt" that you wish you had, or if you
have one maybe you don’t wish it....she's the one whose perfectly
comfortable giving her niece a vibrator for her bat mitzvah kinda
chick. Very comfortable with her sexuality,
way into any and all new agey hoo-hah she can get her hands on.
A victim of too much money/too little time/ not a great deal of gray
matter but a whole lotta woman. I found the parts in me that were like
her and ... just sat around in them. Walked around naked a lot.
Started reading tarot cards. Kooky stuff. She's much more confident
than I am so that was fun too, to find that. Is that enough of an
You are also involved in producing the Los Angeles Premiere of the
LEARNED LADIES. How did this come about? Why chose this script?
The director, Larry Biederman, had approached the company with this
translation and we needed a producer in order to get it done. He
actually had a list of classics he was interested in but THEATRE OF
NOTE including myself really wanted this . Larry had directed a play
in our late night festival last year and I just dug him so much that I
wanted to make the play happen. It was also great to do because I
learned so much about the other side. I am usually just the
"talent" so to have to single handedly do all the other
things behind the scenes was crazy cool in that I learned how to
fundraise and how much a set costs and actor wrangling and ego
stroking and all kinds of things. I am really proud of its sensibility
I love the whole Willy Wonka/Tim Burton/ wacky/laugh -in feel its got.
We picked this play because it really speaks about the ‘LA self help
spiritually take care of keeping yourself comfy’ vibe. And the
translation was so modern and interesting and this play is so rarely
Got it. Tell us a little about the Theatre of Note. How long have you
been involved with their company?
I have been an active member for about three years although I was a
member for 5 and it took me two year to not be so intimidated by the
energy there. It's a beautiful place where art really comes first and
everyone is kind and that is rare. NOTE is a company of folks who like
doing new stuff and saying new things or things in different ways. We
are democratically run so the sensibility changes sometimes we are
more punk rock and sometimes we are kooky and sometimes...just depends
on the voice of the people....
Any favorite moments to share with the Theatre of Note or with any
past stage production ?
Kirsten: Favorite moments.....so so MANY. A brilliant actress
named Stacey McQueen and I were doing our two/person one man show as a
rental last summer there at the same time "EAT ME" was
playing there (an amazing play written and performed by company member
Jackie Wright that has been nominated for a TON of LA weekly awards)
and "EAT ME" had this really frightening set. Like creepy.
And it was so cool to go there and do our flighty comedy with all it's
silliness and cupcakes (we really served cupcakes) and Jell-o shots
and jokes on the same stage that would on other days transform into
this whole other being. That’s how note is we all are different, and
have different loves but the core of it is discovering new ways to say
stuff or to try things....jeeze I hope that makes sense. And we have
the best after parties in town. Hands down.
Excellent. Sounds like you really enjoy this craft. How long
have you been 'an actor' ?
I would say ninth grade was when I realized I was good at it. My mom
forced me to take an acting class because I was too shy and would not
talk. It ended up being the thing that kept me not flunking out of
school. I am [receiving the 2005 LA Drama Critics Circle Natalie
Shafer Award] and I am totally thanking my high school drama teacher
for it which is cool [because] I thought the "if I ever get an
recognition for this acting stuff get I want to thank her"....
And where do you see yourself in five years?
Five years....I want to...wow I feel strange writing this but here we
go. I want to be at a point where I can choose what acting work I do
for a living, you know? I want to get better and do more of things I
haven’t yet. More films. I want to write another show and have it
produced by someone else. I want to have enough clout to at least TRY
and land a role in one of the Narnia sequels preferably “Voyage of
the Dawn Treader". In five years I see myself being truer to what
my intentions are and being very brave and having my career at a
momentum that I can afford to help others more. I want to have a
Well Kristen, thank you very much for taking the time answer a
few questions. Any words of wisdom to share with our readers?
MY advice--follow that bliss....read "The Power of
Now"...show up....know that we all feel like we don’t know what
were doing sometimes and we don’t think we should be allowed to be
an actor/ a writer/ a plumber/ fill in here what your dream is but we
have a right. you have the right to be who you are and follow your
Adrian: Follow your bliss, once said by Joseph Campbell. I like
Thanks again Kirsten.
LA Drama Critics
Theatre of Note:
15 Minutes of
Info on Joseph
by Adrian Rennie: The Learned
to Arts & Reviews Main Page
Rennie, staff writer and editor for Maestro Arts &
Reviews, is an actor and Los Angeles area playwright. Having
received great reviews for his plays, The Seven Lessons of
Life and Only
a Phone Call Away, he continues to write and act in Los
Angeles Theater, Television and Film.