2021 didn’t start out with a bang, but with a boot – literally. We were still sheltering-in-place and I was recovering from achilles repair surgery. I was required to wear an oversized boot to protect my ankle and moved around the apartment using a knee scooter. On the rare occasion that we’d venture outside, I clumsily navigated the world on crutches. It would take a few more months before I would actually walk again sans aides.
Side Note: I’ve always been an advocate for accessibility, but that experience really opened my eyes to just how inaccessible so many public spaces are. Let’s do better, please!
At the same time, live theater had shut down and no one knew when it would return. For someone whose career centered on working the regional stages, it felt like career purgatory not knowing what was next for theater. Fortunately, my incredible agents at JE Talent helped me expand into screen and voice over work. One audition they sent me on was for a project simply titled CITY LIGHTS. Little did I know it was the sequel to the wildly popular holiday movie A CALIFORNIA CHRISTMAS that was #1 on Netflix for a period in 2020.
I was ecstatic to book it and had an incredible experience shooting in Petaluma and San Francisco. The cast and crew were a dream, especially real life wife-husband team Lauren and Josh Swickard (Callie and Joseph), Laura James (Victoria), and the coolest cat behind the camera director Shaun Paul Piccinino.
With such a difficult start to 2021, I never imagined ending this year checking three things off my dream list with one project:
1. Making my feature film debut;
2. Making a Christmas movie;
3. Being on NETFLIX!
My intention as a performer is to bring joy to the world. I hope this movie will bring that to your life this holiday season.