Photos by Leon Bernstein
How and when did you get into acting?
I started acting when I was seven. My older brother’s girlfriend was involved with a community theater in White Plains called Playgroup Theatre and he wanted to audition to be with her. Like the annoying little brother I was, I wanted to do everything my brother did, so I auditioned as well. After that, I kind of never stopped. Sixteen years later, I’m still at it.
Where does your inspiration come from?
Ah, an acting question. True inspiration is pretty rare. It can happen on stage in performance, in rehearsal, or off stage at just about any time, and it’s impossible to recreate. I think inspiration comes from a combination of a few things: Good technique, vulnerability, and constant immersion in all things creative. Playing piano is also an indescribable and incredible source of inspiration for me.
Tell us about your breakout role in Bart Got a Room, and what was it like working with the famous William H. Macy?
I played the leading role of Danny Stein in brilliant writer/director Brian Hecker’s 2008 Tribeca Film Festival hit Bart Got a Room. It was my first time acting in a feature film and I couldn’t wait to be on set. I actually got the call from my agent on my birthday – best birthday present to date.
Working with Bill was one of the highlights of my experience. He’s a theater guy, and with that comes a unique sensibility both on and off set. He’s a smart actor, you know? Always making specific character choices, big or subtle, to help tell the story a little better. The thing that stood out most to me was his generosity as an actor. You hear horror stories about movie stars treating their cast and crew poorly and I was unsure of what to expect. Bill stood in on every single shot and gave me a sincere and committed performance every time, whether the camera was on him or not. It made my job easier and my performance stronger. I am forever grateful.