April is the Cruelest Month...

April has been pretty quiet. And brutal, here in Minneapolis. I wanted to dig up some stats, so you all could see how bad it's been, but suffice it to say, we had 17.5 inches of snow on my yard two weeks ago...starting Friday, I stayed in my house and didn't leave, because we were experiencing true blizzard conditions, which is more rare than I thought, and record snowfall. I ordered Chinese food, and holed up for a weekend of productivity and binge-watching whatever my roommates put on the TV. 

Therefore, I have not had anything to report. I have been laying low, auditioning occasionally, switching support jobs, cleaning out the house...really NOT MUCH HAS BEEN HAPPENING. When there are two feet of snow built up on the yard/street/everything, you see how industrious you and everyone around you feel. 

Today, it's in the 60s, the sun is out, and everything is starting to get better. Spring is definitely here. Finally. The allergies that I never had before in my life agree. 

Today I went in to do ADR for a project with Good Astronaut that I shot back in December. Hoping to see that finished soon! And next week, I'll be returning to the Mihmiverse with my first shoot date with Christopher Mihm on one of two films that he's shooting this spring, Queen of Snakes. That also got pushed forward because of the snow. 

I finally think winter is over. Fingers crossed, guys. Cuz it's almost May, and no one needs snow in May.

Feels like the first time

Sometimes, I look back at things I've done in the past, and I can connect the dots. I can see that doing that reading for so-and-so led to getting cast in this project over here, and then that thing, and then this other. I can see how something seemingly insignificant, saying yes to a particular opportunity that didn't seem especially mind-blowing, has taken me down a particular path and changed my life greatly. 

Right now, the past week at VO Atlanta...all these facts, all these new pieces of information, all of these events, and all of these wonderful people I met...are just pinpoints of light on an inky black sky. They are just stars waiting for the constellation to be drawn in. And it's going to take a while before I can look back to see what the picture is. 

Whatever it is, I have a feeling it's going to be beautiful. 

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Au: Earth Under Gold Kickstarter Launched

The Kickstarter has finally launched! This one's been a long time coming...Audio narration drama AU: Earth Under Gold is a Sci-Fi audio series created in collaboration by Matthew Edward Gustavsen and Paul Michael Christian. The nine episode story arc is currently in production and was recorded here in Minneapolis at Minnehaha Recording Company.  Vidsko Productions plans to have the series released in late 2018. In the meantime, donate to the Kickstarter here (20 days left!) and listen to the demo on Soundcloud to get a taste of what the series will be like.  

 Cast and production team, from left: Joel Thingvall, Douglas Sidney, Tony Williamette, Billie Jo Konze, Chad David, and Paul Christian. (Some cast not present for this photo)

Cast and production team, from left: Joel Thingvall, Douglas Sidney, Tony Williamette, Billie Jo Konze, Chad David, and Paul Christian. (Some cast not present for this photo)

Silver Medal Film!

Last night at the awards program for the 100 Hour Film Race, our film "Sign Here, Please" took home second place! (If we were Olympic skiers, we'd all be sporting silver medals)

Great work, everyone! It was so much fun working on this film with Urban Mountain Media. If you want to see the other fun stuff they do, check out their Instagram (@urban_mountain) or Facebook page.

And now that the judging is finally over, I can share the film! Watch and enjoy!

All these things that I've done

Helloooo!

Once again, I got so busy with all the exciting things I've been doing that I forgot to update…. What’s been happening? Here’s the quick rundown of everything since January 1st: 

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In January, I did a VO for Traditional Medicinals…as soon as it’s released, I'll post it. I can't wait to share it, because it's really delightful. 

 

 

 

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The same day, I shot a short film called Old Media Studies, written and directed by Stephan Clark. I play a New Media Studies professor with a pretty, ahem, exciting wardrobe. 

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A few weeks ago, I voiced a really inspiring piece for Cambia Health. I’m not sure if I’ll get to share this one or not, but it was a great experience. I love reading copy that has that edge of wonder to it. 

 

 

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Last weekend, I shot a training video with Best Buy, and learned a lot about what it takes to install washers and dryers. 

 

 

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I’m currently taking an online VO class with the fabulous Tina Zaremba…can’t recommend her enough! Click here to check her out!

And I registered to attend VO Atlanta for the first time!  I’m so excited to attend this conference, meet other VO artists and industry people, fill my head with knowledge until it explodes, and get inspired!!! 

 

 

 

 

 

Other fun and exciting things:

1. A client told me my voice was “magical.” How does one even begin to accept that compliment? By stuttering, that’s how. 

2. I can’t prove it, but it actually happened: Ben Folds told me I was a good singer. I’ll accept that compliment as well, but once again, not without stuttering. 

3. I did a self-tape audition with my cat (they asked for him to audition as well, I didn’t just include him of my own accord). 

4. BONUS! I have wanted to see The Killers for years...and they were as AMAZING as I'd hoped

“Sign Here, Please” is in the Finals!

In December, I shot a film with Urban Mountain Media for the 100 Hour Film Race, and the film is one of fifteen finalists from around the world!

It was so great to work with Harrison, Justin and Tim and the rest of them again! I last did a short film with them years ago.  Guy Meets Girl was about a writer who gets help from a female friend as he is struggling to write a meet-cute script. 

In this one, I became Clarence’s nemesis, as a snarky courier, drug lord, and Russian spy.  

 BAMF

BAMF

 Harry and Tim setting up the shot

Harry and Tim setting up the shot

 What’s in the box? 

What’s in the box? 

I feel pretty, oh so pretty...

Just got some shots from my photo shoot with Mark Riddle, and they look AWESOME! 

Sassy waitress

 

If only I could do a photo shoot like this every week... Thanks to everyone involved who helped make me look so great in these photos! It was like...an army. 

Gossiping about others in the restaurant?

Credits: 

Photographer: Mark Riddle 
MUA: Mary K Flaa
Hair: Erianne Malchow
Wardrobe Assist: Abby Schoonover
Wardrobe: Jane Williams, Madeline G Moon

My date in the bar scene: Rod Kasai
And all shot on-set at the gorgeous Commodore Bar and Restaurant where I still need to return to get a cocktail...

In Which Adri and I Do Not Sing Karaoke

My friend Adri and I have been singing karaoke together for about the past three years.  We have our favorite songs, and we have our karaoke group, and we have our favorite places.  But we also both sing professionally, he with his band Cabs, and I in the occasional musical theatre production or singing telegram.

Recently, a few people in the theater community have been singing cabaret nights at the Troubadour Wine Bar in Minneapolis.  I attended one for my friend Bethany a while back, and chatted with Adrian (different human being altogether) who runs the programming, and ended up booking an evening! (What?!)

For our theme, we've chosen "Songs We Can't Sing at Karaoke"...meaning songs we can never find in anyone's book, or songs we know we just can't get away with there. 

So...my first cabaret night (where I'm not just singing a song or two) will be Monday, October 23rd. Show starts at 8pm, free to the public. Come on down! But make sure to get there early to get a beverage and claim your seat, cuz the place is tiny!

See you on the 23rd for Cab Cabaret at the Troubadour! 

A Photo Shoot a Year in the Making

I met producer Mark Riddle almost two years ago, on a super fun 1970s commercial shoot for Medica. Since then, we have also worked together on the big radio/tv campaign I did for HealthPartners. In addition to being a freelance broadcast producer, he is also a photographer, so when he asked me if I'd be interested in working with him on an editorial shoot for his portfolio, of course I agreed.  

We started talking about this about a year ago, but both being busy people our schedules didn't mesh until everything finally came together last week. I saw the raw images yesterday and got to help narrow down the final images, and I am so excited! They look absolutely amazing!

 

And credits for the shoot: 

Photographer: Mark Riddle  

Makeup Artist: Mary K. Flaa

Hair stylist: Erianne Malchow  

Wardrobe Assistant: Abby Schoonover

Photo Assistants: Matt Porter, Scott McClure

Wardrobe Stylists: Jane Williams, Madeline Moon

Actor/Extra: Rod Kasai

Photos coming soon...in the meantime, here are some candid shots from my pre-shoot prep and a couple from the set!

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Erianne prepping my hair

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And styling it on set

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Our gorgeous location, The Commodore Bar and Restaurant in St. Paul

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Gorgeous eye makeup by Mary Flaa! 

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Erianne, me and Mary

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Post-shoot selfie! God, that makeup looks good!

Basilica Block Party...Just a Little Bit Late

I never claimed to be good at this blogging thing. 

MOM JEANS

My harrowing tale of love, loss, and the parrot that got away

Last month I shot a promo spot for the Basilica Block Party, a really fun little video spoofing Unsolved Mysteries-style tv shows. I worked with a (rather ill-tempered) parrot, and got to wear really unflattering mom jeans. Everyone from Periscope was really fun to work with, and I got to see Brandi Carlile and The Shins, so I guess it was worth it to wear the mom jeans and work with a diva bird. 

I Get to Say Spiderman on National Television

Ever wonder who does those really fast voiceover tags at the end of commercials? Well, I have a national spot airing for General Mills cereals, and I get to mention Spiderman...but no one will ever know it's me!  (Except that I just told you it's me...so...damn)

Not sure how long this link will last, but if you want to see my spot for GM/Spiderman Homecoming, check it out here! 

 

Let me talk!

I just got back my new narrative Voiceover demo! I'm so excited! 

If you'd like, you can listen to it here on Soundcloud

It was not quite a year ago that I got my commercial demo produced, and a narrative demo was next on the list. Mike Stalcar produced both of them...I just love working with him!

Also, a friend of mine and I are discussing a podcast we might want to produce in the near future. Keep an eye out for that as well!

In the meantime, if you need a female voice for a narrative or commercial project, you know where to find me! 

 

Bamboo Toilet Paper and a Trip Up North

Last week was a whirlwind of auditions (four on-camera, four VO, two theater), and rehearsals for Unsung, and the fundraiser for Candid Theater (I am on the board, plus I MC'd the event and performed at it as well), so I'm finally getting around to posting about my shoots. I started my week (last week) coming back from two shoots... One in Minneapolis, and one in Ely, Minnesota.  

On Saturday, I got to channel Joan from Mad Men on a shoot for a Kickstarter for Bim Bam Boo bamboo toilet paper, in a costume complete with Moschino vintage heels. It was a really fun shoot, very Poo-pourri in style. 

 Keeping the lipstick intact while staying hydrated. V. important!

Keeping the lipstick intact while staying hydrated. V. important!

 Vintage heels that fit me perfectly? It must be a dream!

Vintage heels that fit me perfectly? It must be a dream!

 The whole team on the Bim Bam Boo shoot! How cool is this 360 photo courtesy of Kari Jo Skogquist?!??

The whole team on the Bim Bam Boo shoot! How cool is this 360 photo courtesy of Kari Jo Skogquist?!??

After that, I drove up north to Ely, Minnesota to play a nurse on the short film "Nobody's son." I can't post any photos from set, so here are a few pics from the trip up there...I spent about twice as much time driving as I did on set, so it's probably just as well that I show you glorious Northern Minnesota. 

 Lake Superior

Lake Superior

 Me. Lift Bridge. Cold. Wind. 

Me. Lift Bridge. Cold. Wind. 

 Not many options. 

Not many options. 

"The Pardon List"

Last week I shot a short film...just a small role, playing Eva Braun, Hitler's mistress (and wife for 40 hours). Reunited in the afterlife, after Eva has spent 30 years waiting for him in purgatory, Hitler has a moment in front of the parole board...but will he ruin his chance to escape hell?

Originally, the script had called for me to punch Hitler...then it was a slap...and then they finally settled on having me hit him with a riding crop. It's really hard to say what the tone of the finished project will be, honestly, but I'm curious!

Back to Class!

The Actors Workout is still on hiatus while Raye is off galavanting in London doing Nice Fish (which only runs through Feb 11, so if you are in London, get tickets now!!), so meanwhile, I've decided it's time to face my fears of watching myself on camera and take another class. 

I started Michele Hutchison's on-camera class last Sunday, and I'm super excited that it's going to inspire me to create more of my own work and start writing for myself more. Can't wait to see what the next few weeks bring! 

Now, excuse me while I go work on my lines for the scene I've got to prepare for next week...and the scene I'm prepping for Raye's first day back...