Meet Stephanie, a recent I-House Alum originally from a small town in Germany. She’s just graduated from the acting program at the Lee Strasberg Theatre and Film Institute in New York City.
I-House’s Salon Nights are so great. You experience so many different cultures that it’s bound to influence you. I’ve met people here at I-House who have opened my eyes to so many things.
What drew you to apply to I-House?
My school, the Strasberg Theatre and Film Institute, told me about I-House as a great housing opportunity. I-House sounded awesome to me because it’s full of international people.
Can you tell me a bit about your school and how you got into acting?
I finished my program in September and, before that, studied musical theater in Germany for four years. At Strasberg I studied method acting, camera acting and theater acting for a year.
I pretty much grew up on stage. That’s what I’ve done my entire life. But I feel like the mediums of film and TV are now my main goals. I’m open to anything that is worth the investment of energy and heart, but I especially think that film and TV would be great.
What have you worked on in the past?
I was an extra on HBO’s Billions and FX’s The Americans—those were both things I did here. I’ve done a bunch of student films and was in my first off-off Broadway show, that was fun. I played a nun, a cosplayer, and a girl who has a fantasy language all in one play. In Germany, I was on minor TV shows and played the dramatic parts.
Are you planning to stay in New York after I-House?
Yeah. New York is getting bigger [for acting]. They loosened union details so now people can create more work than before, so it’s becoming a bigger market for film and TV. There’s a lot of shooting going on here, and since the world got smaller with the internet and social media it’s easier now to be in New York but also do shoots in LA. I think fame and success would actually scare me, to be chased by paparazzi [in Hollywood].
What is an artistic project you’re most proud of and why?
In Germany I did the musical Baby Talk. It was a two-person musical and each show was two and half hours long. It was great because it’s about this working couple. She wants to have a baby, he doesn’t, and she actually gets pregnant but then loses the baby at the end. We had an amazing director. He really worked with us in a method way, which I found out later, and it was so intense but also so fulfilling.
What are you planning for the near future?
My goal is to inspire people and also entertain them. I want to work on stuff that I believe in, and I think that’s achievable. I think as an artist you never know what the future holds, so I’m just going to be open to it. Life is a matter of luck, but as long as you work hard, especially as an artist, you’re going to be fine.
Has I-House influenced or facilitated your creative work?
Yes. I’ve met a few people—Sam Harwood, he studies directing at Columbia. He invites me to classes whenever he needs an actor. So I’d love to work with him again at some point. And I-House’s Salon Nights are so great. You experience so many different cultures that it’s bound to influence you. I think that as an artist, you get so much input from other people, be it in a political, cultural or language sense. I’ve met people here at I-House who have opened my eyes to so many things.