Los Angeles, CA (The Hollywood Times) 2/20/20-
You were born in St. Louis, Missouri, when did you discover your love for acting?
Linda Collins: My siblings and I started creating little plays to perform for my parents in my hometown of St. Charles, Mo. when I was about six; my first role was Cupid in our Valentine’s Play. Somehow my older sister saw to it that I ended up being cast as Cheetah in our sibling-produced Tarzan plays, but it was all a lot of fun. I have always had a dual focus: music and acting. I was cast as the lead in our senior class play in high school and that was when I really started thinking I would love to do this.
Who influenced your decision to act?
Linda Collins: My mother was a singer, pianist, music director, and a very expressive person. She performed in regional musical productions and always encouraged my creative endeavors. If I had to name only one person it would definitely be her in my early years. We were very close and she is woven into every fiber of my being. I worked professionally in music for many years and I would often be playing in various orchestras, accompanying actors and singers on stage- I always thought “I want to be doing that”, even though I love making music as well. I wanted to be on stage with the other actors, telling the story. Finally when I moved to NYC over a decade ago, I ultimately created the space in which to start realizing my passion.
Your TV work includes Disappeared, True Crime with Aphrodite Jones, and Unravelled. What did you enjoy most about these roles?
Linda Collins: It was great working on those shows because I was able to work in both scripted and improvised scenes. I loved telling the story, being given a script and then the green light to make choices and improvise to make the story come alive. I loved my role as Cindy Karlsen in True Crime with Aphrodite Jones, as the emotional range of the character was interesting- it was great playing a “good guy” with complex emotions.
My first acting teacher in NYC was Catherine Gaffigan, who acted alongside Dustin Hoffman in The Journey of the Fifth Horse. She was quite a character. She taught me Method acting. I have also trained with Terry Schreiber, who taught me so much about breaking down a script and bringing my character to life. I am fortunate to have subsequently trained with several other great acting coaches in NYC and have developed my style from all that I have learned.
What are you most proud of?
Linda Collins: I am really proud to simply be a working Actor. I started pursuing acting professionally in New York City later in life after having had a solid music career as a theatre, orchestra and recording musician in the United States and Canada. I don’t come from a family of showbiz professionals, and I have worked diligently to make my way in this profession. I continue to apply myself to constantly improve my craft in acting and never take for granted the gift of being able to work in the arts as an Actor, and the value the arts bring to a given society. It is hard to imagine living any other way. I am grateful for what I have.
You are active in the NY Indie Film scene. Which is your favorite role?
Linda Collins: I loved playing Liz in THREE FOR THE ROAD, a comedy short which I produced and starred in along with Sandra Lucas and Eve Austin. Liz is a bigger than life character who is back on the dating scene after many cushy years in the suburbs, and now is seeking life fulfillment. She has a way of seeing life in a positive, sometimes odd way, almost oblivious to the faults or impulses of others. She just charges forward. I can relate! She was a lot of fun to play. It was also a nice change from the dramatic roles I have often played.
THREE FOR THE ROAD was directed by David Patrick Wilson, who also played the charming Rory in the film. The story brings three women together from entirely different backgrounds all looking for the next thing in life. The short was produced as a short film and pilot for a series. We won BEST ENSEMBLE at the Brightside Tavern Shorts Film Fest in Jersey City, and FINALIST for BEST TV EPISODE at Portland Comedy Film Festival, and are continuing our Festival run.
You have been cast in 2 upcoming films with Iconic Director John Gallagher. Why did you decide to take on these projects?
Linda Collins: Any Actor in NYC would love to work with Iconic Director John Gallagher. His films are absolutely wonderful, and he is an actor’s Director. I took John’s acting class at One on One NYC and from there he cast me in his upcoming Feature Film ALL MOBBED UP and subsequently in THE LONELY ROAD TO NOWHERE (comedy short) . My character in ALL MOBBED UP is Mrs. Hoops, the wife of mobster Johnny Hoops, who is being played by Artie Pasquale, so it’s very exciting to be working with Artie as well. To be working in a film of this stature with wonderful name actors, a great storyline, and a great Director is a dream come true! I so much look forward to shooting this movie. THE LONELY ROAD TO NOWHERE is a charming comedy short that I star in along with Megan Fulmer. It is based on a monologue that Director John Gallagher wrote previously, and has now expanded to a fast-paced comedy. It’s a delightful script. I love my character and I can’t wait to shoot this spring!
Linda Collins: I’m currently shooting two Indie Series, THE STABLE (crime drama) and I FELL OFF A CLIFF (comedy) , both Twenty-first Century Vision Films Kevin McNamara) productions here in NYC, directed by Anngeannette Pinkston. Both have terrific scripts. I play a crime boss in THE STABLE, and a Medical Doctor in the ladder. I also am fortunate to have several award-winning films on the Festival Circuit. In addition to THREE FOR THE ROAD, PERCEPTION (Andres Irias, Director); IN MY EYES (Tim Doran, Director), and MY DINNER WITH SCHWARTZY (Melissa Skirboll, Director); and soon to hit the circuit: MARY JANES TRIBULATION (Arsen Bortnik, Director), and THE LONELY ROAD TO NOWHERE (John Gallagher, Director)