Kristy Johnson is an amazing actress. I was introduced to Kristy via Monique, a character she plays in the Pasadena Playhouse production of Bernard Weinraub's Above the Fold, directed by Steven Robman. I became mesmerized with Kristy’s performance and had to find out more about the woman behind the character.
Kristy Johnson has a mind-blowing talent along with the ability to take you on an emotional roller coaster filled with love, anger, compassion and laughter; she accurately embodies her character.
She was nominated for a 2010 Joseph Jefferson Award (Non-Equity) for a Supporting Role in a Play for “A Song for Coretta.”
Follow me as we journey through the world of Kristy Johnson.
Renisha Marie: Who is Kristy Johnson?
Kristy Johnson: An actor from the South Side of Chicago living in Los Angeles.
Renisha Marie: You have a law degree, as well as a Bachelor of Arts degree. At what point in your life did you decide to pursue a full time career in
Kristy Johnson: I decided I wanted to pursue a career in entertainment shortly after I began practicing corporate law.
Renisha Marie: I caught your performance in the play Above the Fold at the Pasadena Play House and your act was enthralling. You embodied your character Monique leaving me feeling angry with, as well as sorry for, Monique. You captured the essence of your character. What groundwork, if any, did you have to do in order to nail the character?
Kristy Johnson: Thank you! Monique suffers from a multitude of issues, including mental illness, abuse and drug addiction, so I did a great deal of research.
I also did lots of imaginative work to create a compelling backstory for Monique. This helped me to justify the choices she makes in the play.
Renisha Marie: In Above the Fold, you work with Academy Award and Emmy nominee Taraji P. Henson, and an impressive cast, including Arye Gross, Kristopher Higgins, Mark Hildreth, Joe Massingill, and Seamus Mulcahy. Briefly describe what it's like working with such an artistic
cast of actors and actresses.
Kristy Johnson: I had a wonderful experience with everyone in this cast. It was a fun, creative and dedicated group of artists. Everyone was thrilled to be working on an exciting new play.
Renisha Marie: What do you love about your work?
Kristy Johnson: I love stepping into the lives of different characters and bringing their unique stories to life. It's a new adventure every time. I also love that I learn so much from every character I play. Every job is an opportunity for me to grow artistically as well as personally.
Renisha Marie: Describe your dream role.
Kristy Johnson: I'd love to play a complicated character in a physically challenging role. I'd love to play a dancer or be in an action thriller with incredible fight sequences.
Renisha Marie: What has been your biggest challenge?
Kristy Johnson: Calming my nerves before auditions!
Renisha Marie: What motivates you?
Kristy Johnson: Living a life of purpose.
Renisha Marie: What is your best quality as an actress?
Kristy Johnson: I strive to be compassionate. My job is always to tell the truth of the characters I play. This requires love and understanding,
which I think begins with compassion.
Renisha Marie: What advice do you have for aspiring actors and actresses?
Kristy Johnson: Get a spiritual practice. Do theater. Get training. Learn about yourself and be keenly observant of others.
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