Happy Wednesday everybody! Chad Eric Smith defines the phrase "working actor". He's on the stage in a DC Black Theatre Festival show, he's on the screen in "Dark Therapy", which he wrote, and he's got several films lined up this summer. Despite his packed schedule, Chad was able to spend a few minutes with us here at DC Actors Examiner.
And by the way, this man can act! Check out his demo reel here. On with the interview!
Q - "What inspired you to act?"
I was born and raised in Washington, DC and was always very theatrical. My mother put me in drama camps as a kid and my grandmother used to take me to see plays at the Arena Stage in southwest DC and on Broadway. While in High School, I became a member of Children’s National Medical Center’s theater troupe Teens Against the Spread of AIDS (TASA). It combined improvisational theater, poetry, and hip hop, to educate our peers, parents, and health professionals about important teen health concerns, including HIV, sexuality, and violence. All these experiences made me interested in pursuing acting professionally. Oh, and my favorite actor is Washington, DC native, Jeffrey Wright, one of the most versatile, most underrated actors. I hope to have a career as varied and thoughtful as his.
Q - "Who do you play in "Dark Therapy"?
“Dark Therapy” is my upcoming directorial debut, a short horror comedy in which I play ‘Erebus,’ a 251 year old vampire who seeks psychiatric treatment for a phobia that impacts his way of life. “Dark Therapy” is currently in post-production and will be entered into film festivals very soon. I wrote the script with local actress Devin Nikki Thomas, who also produced the film via her production company Unitivity Productions, LLC. Learn more about it here: www.facebook.com/DarkTherapyUP
Q - "Who do you play in "The Day Daddy Left"?
I play the “Daddy” in the upcoming stage play “The Day Daddy Left.” The title may give some the impression that it’s about an absentee father. On the contrary, it’s about a very loving father and how his loved ones cope after he dies. It was written and directed by Kimber Lee and is one of the plays featured in this year's DC Black Theatre Festival. Tickets can be purchased @ http://www.eventbrite.com/e/the-day-daddy-left-tickets-11470714215
Q - Where did you train to act?
I attended the University of Pittsburgh at Greensburg, where I received my Bachelor of Science in psychology. While there, I took several acting classes. But my most valuable training as an actor came from just doing it. Over the past decade, I’ve been in close to 20 stage plays.
Q - "What films do you have coming out this year? What should film fans know about?”
2014 is a big year for me in independent film. I’ll be appearing as a mysterious drifter named ‘Ahmad’ in the upcoming horror feature film “The Suffering,” by LA based filmmaker Rob Hamilton. Check out the trailer at www.thesufferingfilm.com. I will also appear as a restaurateur in writer/director Harold Jackson III’s upcoming romance “Last Night.”
Q - “What should theater fans know about Chad Eric Smith?”
I am an award-winning stage actor. In 2010, I played Walter Lee Younger in the Kuntu Repertory Theatre production of the musical “Raisin” and was awarded 'Best Leading Actor in a Musical' by the Pittsburgh Chapter of the African American Council on the Arts (AACTA). That same year, I also won for 'Best Supporting Actor in a Musical' for my role as Wilson Pickett in the New Horizon Theater production of "I Gotcha! The Story of Joe Tex and the Soul Clan."
Q - "What TV work have you done?"
I haven’t done much TV work. Most recently, I did some extra work on the set of the Netflix drama “House of Cards,” Season 2, but, unfortunately I ended up on the cutting room floor. Oh well, it happens.
Follow Chad on Facebook at www.facebook.com/ActorChadEricSmith and on Twitter @ChadEricSmith