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Posts Tagged ‘MTV’

Ben Roberts is another performer who’s on the rise and crossing various genres from theatre to film to music. Off-Broadway and regionally, Ben has delighted audiences in “Abraham Lincoln’s Big Gay Dance Party,” “Walking Down Broadway,” “6 Degrees of Separation,” and “Grapes of Wrath” (Syracuse Stage). His film and television credits include “North Palm Wrestling” on MTV, “New York,” “A Born Comedian,” “A Very Serious Person,” and “Apart.” When Ben is not acting, he fronts a band called The Benjees, currently on tour:

Ocotber 30, 10pm, Crystal Blue Hall, Ozone Park, NY

November 14, 1pm, The Jungle Room, Lebanon, NY

November 23, 9pm, Crash Mansion, New York, NY

December 12, 6pm, Via Emilia, New York, NY ($20 all you can eat appetizer and beer)

1. Who or what inspired you to become a performer? I’m not sure really. I used to get in trouble when I acted up in class when I was a kid. Having a place to do that meant I wouldn’t get in trouble and I could still be silly and act up.

2. What is the highest and lowest note you can sing? Depends on the day and what I’ve been doing the past few days. More sleep for me usually means a higher and fuller range. I haven’t been sleeping much.

3. Who is the one person you haven’t worked with that you would like to? There are so many people that I haven’t worked with…I guess I would say Clint Eastwood. I would like to be in one of his films.

4. Do you have any strange or unusual talent that nobody knows about? I cut my own hair. And most of my friends hair, in exchange for beer or wine.

5. Favorite way to stay in shape? I like working out, (circuit training) but playing music w/ my band is probably number one. Usually I’m soaking wet after our shows.

6. Boxers or Briefs? Neither and both. I like boxer-briefs.

7. Favorite item off the $1 menu? Is ice cream on the dollar menu? With fudge and nuts.

8. Favorite meal? Tough one. Seared salmon with avocado salsa, and sauteed spinach with pine nuts and raisins on the side.

9. Favorite website? www.myspace.com/thebenjees

10. Superman or Wonder Woman? Superman.

BONUS QUESTIONS:

11. What’s the best advice you’ve ever received? When I was growing up there was a small chalkboard up in one of my friend’s houses. It simply said “Do your best” and was underlined. Every time I went there I saw it and asked myself if I had been doing that or not. Had I been giving it my all? I always liked the simplicity of the sign and advice.

12. Favorite way to spend your day off? I dont really have days off. I am always doing something. But would say doing nothing sounds like a great way to spend a day off.  Just sitting on a porch somewhere, in the sun or the rain, doing absolutely nothing.

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I had the fortunate experience of having a one on one interview with Autumn Hurlbert after seeing her in Bobby Cronin’s concert “Not The Same: The Music and Lyrics of Bobby Cronin” on Sunday, March 28. With a big beautiful voice and stage presence to go with it, Autumn not only has the talent, but she is gracious, personable, and full of energy. From starring in the first national tour of “Little Women” to regional productions of “Beauty and the Beast,” “Les Miserables,” and “Evita,” Autumn gained national attention as the runner up in MTV’s reality series “Legally Blonde: The Search for Elle Woods.” Since then, she has continued entertaining audiences. She joined Broadway’s “Legally Blonde” until it closed in 2008, then starred in “Glimpses of the Moon” at the Algonquin Hotel, “On The Town” at Encores, “Beehive” at the Maltz Jupiter Theater in FL, and “A Contemporary American’s Guide to a Successful Marriage (c) 1959” (which also starred fellow “Adaumbelle’s Quest” participant Lee Aaron Rosen) at the 2009 NYC International Fringe Festival. Autumn has a few projects in the works, so stay tuned to find out when they come about and in the meantime be sure to visit http://www.autumnhurlbert.com for more on Autumn.

1. Who inspired you to become a performer? My dad because he was in a band when he was in college, but his dream of becoming a musician never came to fruition. He became a banker instead. My parents never pushed anything on me and just allowed me to explore the arts and it was very obvious very quickly that this is where I belonged. Growing up I loved Bette Midler, Bernadette Peters…all the curly haired girls.

1a. Is that where you get your big beautiful belt from, from loving Bette and Bernadette? You know where I get my big beautiful belt from, I had colic when I was a baby and my mom said I screamed every single day of the first year of my life. So I think I have a big voice because I got good training, screaming, as a baby.

2. What is the highest and lowest note you can sing? The lowest note I can sing is Low E below C, highest note I can belt is a high B flat or B, highest note I can sing is High F or G.

3. Who is the one person you haven’t worked with that you would like to? Too many names to pick, but I would really, really, love to  work with is Lin-Manuel Miranda. He has such great energy. I’ve seen “In The Heights” a bunch of times and he’s so smart, humble, and really innovative. I think he’s really fabulous.

4. If you could dream about anyone while you sleep, who would it be? Oh, I’ve never been asked a question like that. That’s scandalous! I would probably dream that Henry Krieger wrote a fierce song for me.

5. Do you have any strange or unusual talent that no one knows about? I am able to stick objects in my nose. I can make a q-tip disappear into my nasal cavity. If I stick 2 things in my nose, I can make them hang from my nostrils. Actually, everybody can do that because if you cut your nose off your face you just have two holes and I found mine. It’s disgusting, I know, but I love freaking people out.

6. Favorite kind of sundae (ice cream flavor & toppings)? If I got a Sundae with lots of toppings it would be vanilla bean ice cream with chocolate and strawberries. If I had just plain ice cream my favorite flavor is mint chocolate chip all the way.

7. Favorite kind of shoes? All Shoes.

8. Favorite skin care product? Burt’s Bees when I’m not working and Origins when I’m employed.

9. Favorite website? Etsy.com or Apartment Therapy.

10. Superman or Wonder Woman? Wonder Woman. I was her for Halloween. Rope, cuffs, and starred undies included.

BONUS QUESTIONS:

11. Favorite quote? I have a lot of favorite quotes, but I will say “leap and the net will appear.”

12. Favorite play/musical? Play: “Lend Me A Tenor” or “August Osage County.” Musical: “Once on this Island.”

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Jem and the HologramsSamantha NewarkSAMANTHA is an accomplished performing ASCAP writer, who’s original songs and stellar vocals can currently be heard on such hit TV shows as the CW’s “Gossip Girl,” “Life Is Wild,” also MTV’s “Laguna Beach,” “Punked,” “My Super Sweet Sixteen” and ABC’s “10 Things I Hate About You.” Sam has also written, sung and placed original songs for the Warner Telepictures and ABC film and television library’s with her song “See You Never” released March 2009 on the new WB Telepictures Music  (Volume 1) “Think Inside The Box.” Sam has also leant her versatile vocals to Sony Playstation and Electronic Arts huge hits “God of War,” “Twisted Metal Black,” “Wild Arm’s 3,” and “Everything Or Nothing” and has the distinction of being invited to join the Esteemed Leonard Cohen circle, embarking on an exciting project as one of his two backup vocalists for a project in late 2006. A powerhouse singer, writer and live performer, currently residing in Nashville TN, Sam continues to grow and explore her georgous sonic landscape on her brand new self titlted  Pop/Electronica CD that has just  been licensed in it’s entirety to MTV. Add accomplished Voice-Over Artist with an international following for her nominated animation work as the lead on the smash cartoon series “JEM AND THE HOLOGRAMS” guest staring roles on “THE TRANSFORMERS” and her work as the British voice of a young Peter Pan’s mother in Steven Spielberg’s feature film “HOOK” Sam looks forward to continuing to lend her Vocal, Voice-Over and Song-Writing prowess to many more exciting projects to come. Be sure to catch Samantha Saturday, October 17 at the 2009 Comic and Horror Festival in Nashville, TN. For some TRULY OUTRAGEOUS info on Samantha, be sure to visit: http://www.samanthanewark.com.

1. Who inspired you to become a performer? When I was a little kid living in South Africa, I was introduced to this child star from Scotland named Lena Zavaroni. I knew from the tips of my toes and all of my being that I wanted to sing and have a career in show business. She was a huge inspiration and the idea of following in her footsteps lit me up from the inside.

2. Who is the one person you haven’t worked with that you would like to? I would love to do guest vocals on a Massive Attack album and maybe something live with them too. It would be so amazing to work with those guys.

3. Do you have any strange or unusual talent that no one knows about? I can sing the names of all 50 states in alphabetical order.

4. What is the weirdest thing you’ve read about yourself and where did you read it? At school someone slipped a note in my locker and told me I had a big ass and then put hearts and kisses. I guess it was a compliment, but I never knew who wrote it and if they were being mean or liked me. Nothing weird has been written that I know about in the press so far.

5. Favorite website? I’m kind of addicted to Facebook right now and I love to Google random stuff.

6. Favorite musician/singer? For me, Annie Lennox, Cyndi Lauper, and k.d. Lang are three of m y favorite singers and performers. I’m a fan of so many different genre’s of music. The CD’s that happen to be in my car right now are Lady Gaga, Goldfrapp, & Madonna. I have a super long list of musicians I’m a fan of on my Myspace page from The Raconteurs to Ricky Lee Jones to Nine Inch Nails.

7. Favorite TV Show Theme Song? The “Jem” theme song of course 🙂

8. Favorite kind of shoes? I’m all about the high heels, if I could get away with wearing them to work out in I would. I love the whole platform look that is in right now, much easier to last in and I LOVE, LOVE BOOTS!!!!

9. Favorite pastime? I’m a bonafied porch monkey, any excuse to hang out with people I love and sit on the back deck with some red wine or a chocolate martini. I also love those days when it’s raining and you have no place in particular that you have to be and you can just sit in bed with the window open a little and hear the rain and watch a marathon of “Law & Order: SVU” or “America’s Next Top Model.”

10. Superman or Wonder Woman? Wonder Woman, I’m all about girl power.

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