Monday, August 29, 2016

Making Connections to Professional Actors in NYC

Nicolai and Nadia after The Robber Bridegroom

During the spring semester senior Theatre major Nicolai Kabana was assigned a 30-minute phone interview with New York City-based professional actor Nadia Quinn as part of Theatre 412: Advanced Acting. That phone call led to a meaningful connection and an in-person meeting over the summer. We asked Nicolai to answer the question, “What was it like to interview and to meet Nadia Quinn?”

When we first got the assignment that we would be picking out of a hat a professional theatre artist to do a phone interview with I was pretty excited. I never really had the chance to have a one-on-one conversation with someone in the professional world. I knew right from the start of the interview that she was going to be completely honest with me about how things worked in the real world.

Before the interview took place I wrote out about fifteen questions that I wanted to ask her. However, we really only made it through about five of them. The reason for this was due to there being a great flow of conversation to the point that questions became more expanded than I ever thought they would be. Even though we didn’t get through all my questions she assured me that if I ever needed someone to talk to about the world of theatre that I could always talk to her. I found this to be very helpful that I could have someone to just talk to outside of the class assignment that knows about what might be ahead for me. I really took away from her how much she doesn’t limit herself in anything that she does. She's not only an actor but also a singer, photographer, and writer. So it was very nice to hear that you can do all these things and still act.

After the interview took place I found myself drawn to wanting to see her in action while she worked. From this I found myself starting to make plans to have her take my headshots. I figured she would know best since she is not only the photographer but an actor as well. Shortly after the interview took place I was once again drawn to her work. So I decided I would go see the closing performance of The Robber Bridegroom [at Roundabout Theatre Company, an Off-Broadway production]. The show overall was fantastic but getting to see her work first hand was by far the best part for me.

Nadia Quinn and the ensemble of The Robber Bridegroom (credit: Joan Marcus)
After the show came to a close I went to the stage doors and even though I wasn’t on the list she made it possible for me to meet her. It was by far one of the coolest meetings I’ve ever had. She is such a talented woman and now one of my inspirations. I look forward to seeing her work in the future because of her talent but also for who she is as a person. I’ve learned a lot here at Bloomsburg about what a professional really is but this experience with Nadia overall will be something I will never forget. This project was such a great way to make new contacts that I really hope this project becomes a yearly thing. I am super thankful that David [Miller] created this project and for the chance to get to know as well as meet such an amazing theatre artist.”

Nicolai Kabana

For more about Nadia Quinn, visit Nicolai graduated in May 2016, but will return to Bloomsburg as an intern with Bloomsburg Theatre Ensemble this coming season. To learn more about the Theatre program at Bloomsburg University, visit