By SARAH FERGUSON
It’s about keeping busy and taking risks.
That’s what Canadian Actress Christine Horne says the acting world is about.
On Jan. 21, Horne was at Niagara College at the Welland campus answering questions about her acting career. First-and-second year acting students were treated to a screening of "The Untitled Work of Paul Shephard," which is a mock documentary she co-stars in.
Afterwards, Horne was questioned on everything from how to get a big break and what advice she would give to up-and-comers.
On becoming an actress, Horne says her parents were supportive but shocked by her choice. "I was shy. I definitely wasn’t the drama kid in school."
She says she got into film "by watching television." Horne says she went through different phases when she wanted to do different jobs, but "acting was always in the back" of her head.
She worked as an usher in theatres before she got her break. Because of her job, she was able to see many different plays, "all kinds of dance shows, world stuff."
"I was exposed to things, good and bad." Horne says everything she saw helped her learn what to do and what not to do.
Horne says her biggest fear is mediocrity as an actress. This is one of the reasons Horne says she thinks about what work she chooses to do.
"I’ve never wanted to be like anyone else, so why aim for the middle where everything is safe?"
She says it also causes her to be more cautious of the acting jobs she takes. Horne says whatever she does leaves a lasting impression.
"Film freaks me out because it’s immortal. There is a record of what I have done on the Internet." It is websites like YouTube that post her work online for anyone who wants to see. She says it’s important to choose wisely because film sticks around, whereas in theatre, the audience "usually forgets about it in a couple of weeks."
Horne says she has never taken any advice, but something she has learned on her own is "to be industrious and find opportunities because waiting for your agent to calling… sucks."
Rejection is also a large part of being an actor, says Horne, adding that "you can’t take it too personally."
"Sometimes I walk into an audition and I’m either wearing the right sweater or I’m not."
A graduate of York University, Horne looked back on her schooling, saying it was the safest place to make mistakes, because once "you start working you need to know what you’re doing."
School also caused anxiety for her. "You tell me it’s okay to fuck up, but you’re grading me."
School is a great place to make connections in the industry because of faculty and other students.
Horne says she calls faculty from York University and asks for graduating students to come work on her sets. Networking is also important, says Horne, because it helps get jobs.
"I’m a crappy auditioner. People ask me to do things because they’ve worked with me or seen me."
On what she would do if she wasn’t acting, Horne says she doesn’t know. It’s weird to spend your life pretending to be other people.
"I find it disconcerting to trick myself into thinking I’m having all of these amazing experiences, but I’m pretending.
"If I quit, I don’t know what I would be doing."
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