Tuesday, October 23, 2007

In the Wings With Kikey Castillo

At the Catalina Magazine party last month I met Actress Kikey Castillo. (Isn't she goregous?) It's not often I meet another Castillo and when I do, we always wonder if we're related.

Kikey will co-star in Virgin Love, a production of the new Ricardo Montalbán Repertory Theatre Company. Virgin Love is a musical Commeda set in the 1700's on the fictional island of Latinia.

Chica Lit: In your bio, you said that you were on your way to becoming a CEO. How did you get into acting and what did your parents think?

Kikey: It's true. I always envisioned myself a corporate career woman in suits. Senior year in college I took an elective course, "Intro to Acting" and really liked it. From there I pursued plays and got bit by the acting bug. I remember thinking: "I'm a month away from graduating college and all I want to do is move to LA and pursue acting. My mom is gonna kill me!" I think she was a little disappointed at first (though she may never confess to this) because she wanted me to have a better life and more opportunities than she had. And I can understand that, but when she saw that I was actually good at acting and that I was making money and appearing on TV, movies, and print then she really started to believe in me and now she's my rock and my biggest supporter.

Chica Lit: Talk about your role in Virgin Love. What were the challenges of your character? What do you love about that character?

Kikey: I play Franceschina, the jeweler's wife who loves jewels more than her husband and consequentially ignores him but is having an affair with the town bachelor (who is also having affairs with several women in town...it's a comedy).

A big challenge for me was that i couldn't sing and the play is a musical commedia! I was very nervous about singing and didn't want to sound terrible in front of anybody, even my cast mates, so I hired a voice coach -- thank God! She's really brought me a long way.

I love my character Franceschina. She has an air of prim and proper about her but yet she has this youthful spirit about her. I found it really easy and fun to step into her shoes.

Chica Lit: How do you keep up the energy night after night, rehearsal after rehearsal?

Kikey: Energy? What is that? :) The rehearsal process has been very physically tough at times. We have been rehearsing five nights a week for the last three months but it's all worth it in the end. Our opening night is Friday, October 26, 2007, so high energy is definitely going to be required during our run. But for me that's usually the easiest part. I can keep going and going during performances...there's something about performing live that always gives me lots of energy.

Chica Lit: Where did you grow up? If not L.A., how did you adjust to becoming an actress in the Hollywood?

Kikey: I grew up in very small town in Eastern Oregon. My family were migrant workers and the work was good up there and we all stayed. Growing up in a small town was very nice, apple pie kind of nice, but I always wanted to live in a big city. So LA was an easy adjustment for me and I really love it. However being an actress in LA has been a lot of blood, sweat and tears...but it's my passion, my dream and I wouldn't dream of doing anything else.

Chica Lit: What struggles have you encountered in Hollywood?

Kikey: I think I've encounter the typical actor struggles here in Hollywood the whole "my agent doesn't send me out enough", "Getting good representation is hard", having to constantly get new headshots, feeling like you never work enough and thinking to yourself why didn't you know about that audition for the TV show, commercial or movie you just saw. Now saying it here makes it seem so comical but trust me, these are serious topics for an actor :) LOL.

Chica Lit: What's next after Virgin Love?

Kikey: I have a few projects in the works. I'm shooting a national Chevy commercial this month; I'm in an indie feature film called The Broken Hearts Club which shoots in December, more on-air hostessing projects and a webisode project. And si Dios quiere, a lot more!
For performances and ticket information, go to the Ricardo Montalbán Repertory Theatre Company.

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