Blacktress is watching her favorite Sunday night TV shows, (all of which she hopes to appear on one day) when suddenly it hits her, that not one of these shows has ever featured a blacktress in a major or recurring role. I hate America, she thinks. Ordinarily she might call Nirvana to complain about this. But just that morning the girls agreed to begin The 21 day No Complaining Challenge, recommended by Oprah.com. So she calls Iyanla instead.
May 28, 2012
May 20, 2012
Blacktress and her friend Iyanla are walking out of the Kirk Douglas Theater in Culver City after just taking in a matinee performance of a play: The Convert, about a young girl in colonial Africa who falls hook line and sinker for Jesus and abandons her African culture for Christianity and Western ideals.
Spoiler alert: The whole thing ends in a bloody mess.
“Damn that chick really drank the Kool-Aid didn’t she?” Iyanla says lighting the American Spirit she bummed from a sort of cute guy standing on the corner.
Iyanla doesn’t normally smoke, but after three plus hours in the theater, the girls have gobbled up every near -edible thing in the bottom of their purses and she’s desperate for anything that might keep hunger pains at bay.
“I know. Assimilation is a motherfucker.” Blacktress says, “Now please let’s eat.”
May 14, 2012
Blacktress has exactly three weeks before she has to be naked on camera for the Indie Film, Open Mic Knight. She thrusts herself into body beautification mode so intense one would swear her wedding day to the Prince of Wales is approaching. Her first order of business is to track down all her vegan friends. Ordinarily she finds them far too annoying to invite to dinner parties or share meals with. But now that I’m watching my calories like Jennifer Hudson, this is the perfect time to catch up with those lunatics over lunch, she thinks. When even thinking the words “catch-up” makes her crave a turkey burger and sweet potato fries, she realizes that she’s in for a long three weeks.”
May 3, 2012
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Blacktress finds herself, sitting in CATZ studios, waiting for her turn to read for one of the leading roles in an indie film.
“I just got the audition notice this morning. Haven’t even had time to read the script,” she leans over and admits to another auditioner, who looks exactly like her only a foot shorter.
“Me neither” her midget clone whispers back guiltily.
Nevertheless Blacktress is relaxed and stress free. The girls share a smile.
Same day auditions are the best, she thinks. They give you no time to obsess about your choices or presumptuously spend the entire paycheck in your head.
Once in the room, Blacktress gets a good vibe from the cute writer/ Director. Her attraction wanes once she notices his ridiculously tight jeans and decides he’s either very uncomfortable or has nuts the size of pomegranate seeds. During her read she feels his eyes lingering over her body. She’s unfazed. He’s a director, of course he’s either horny or a wierdo. Before the sun goes down, the horny/wierdo hyphenate calls to offer her the role.
January 10, 2011
Today, Blacktress finds herself walking onto a small studio lot with a self-assuredness that surprises her. In the last year she’s booked the role of a Ugandan refugee, a depression era jazz singer, a teenage Crip girl, and is in serious contention for the role of Chantal, a pre-op tranny hooker. Today, she’s up for a part far less challenging.
This breakdown reads like my bio, she thinks. Piece of cake.
January 4, 2011
Blacktress watches as her I-phone lights up and sings a digital blues riff.
“Hey Sam,” she says eagerly.
Her agent talks quickly as if Blacktress is a stenographer in need of a challenge.
“ Sotheywannaseeyouforthisthing. Saglowbuget. Theroleof… Chantal. A gorgeous pre-op tranny hooker.”
Is there even such a thing? Blacktress wonders.
He goes on.
“The producer’s got a name.”
Blacktress rolls her eyes. Don’t we all?
Sam powers on.
“They’vebeenlookingallover. They’ve seen boys, girls, he/she’s, and shims. Younameit. Theycan’tfindit. Gogetit.”
September 22, 2010
You may not know her name, but if you are a fan of network and cable episodics, chances are you know her face. She’s been steadily working since she landed the recurring role of Annie Price on the Shield in 2004. This past television season she was probably all over you DVR delivering memorable performances on Law and Order SUV as a transsexual teacher, on Hawthorne as the hilarious and heartbreaking homeless woman Isabel, or True Blood as the con artist Miss Jeannette among others. This season she debuts as Lt Maureen Mason on the well reviewed and highly publicized Detroit 1-8-7 on ABC, where she’s found her home as a series regular. In between takes of the TNT show Hawthorne, we caught up with the bubbly actress over the summer to discuss the craft, the business, the hair, and the life in LaLa land.
September 20, 2010
It’s the closing night party for the play, Dusty Melody. The walls are lined with LA theater types, their plus ones and the kind of actors whose faces you know but names you don’t. Blacktress is tangled within the crowd wearing a short red dress, sipping a dry red wine. But she’s more high from the successful run of the show than the libations. People are buzzing about eager to acknowledge her performance. A handsome man in his thirties taps her on the shoulder and immediately begins blowing smoke up her ass.
“I just wanted to say that you were absolutely wonderful. Won- der- ful. I saw the show twice.”
He leans in closer.
“And you were my favorite.”
“Thank you. It was a lot of fun.”
“So what’s up next for you?” He asks.
May 31, 2010
Blacktress is driving through the NoHo arts district in the valley when she spots a marquee in front of a small theater that reads: Sexy and Suicidal, LA’s fourth longest running stage play. Blacktress is glad to be driving away from the theater instead of towards it. I can’t believe it’s still running, she thinks.
Blacktress is no stranger to the production. She’d been cast in the show years ago after being in LA for only two months. The playwright/director/producer Tony White called to give her the good news.
“But I didn’t audition,” Blacktress said dumbfounded.
“I went over your resume and I liked it. I’ve been doing this a long time. I can just tell you’ll be right.”
Blacktress was confused but in no position to turn down roles. Tony went on to explain the intricacies of his masterpiece.
May 24, 2010
Blacktress has just arrived at Get Cast Now Acting Workshops. This week’s guest casting director Rick Peterson, on the other hand, has not. But his reputation precedes him and it stinks up the place…
“He’s a snarky little asshole,” a workshop devotee cautions, while stapling her resume to the back of her headshot.
Twenty minutes later he barrels in, bitching about traffic. Blacktress hands him her picture. He studies it, then her, then the picture again.
“Ewww. You need new pictures. I hate this one.”