CultureSkills

This past summer, I had the great pleasure of working on my fourth music video for Dizzy Bats. The project was the second collaboration with LA-based director, Michael Chiu, who also directed and co-produced our music video for “Girls.”

For this particular project, the planning and production was done by Michael and the Director of Photography, Jeanna Kim. The two would have meetings on site at the restaurant we shot at to discuss direction, shot selection, and lighting. From there they picked out a crew to help bring this song and video to life.

On a hot Sunday afternoon in mid-July outside of LA, we all met up at Michael’s Burger around 3 PM, shortly after they had closed for the day. We utilized the entire restaurant and nearly everything at our disposal, which included burger patties and french fries to name a couple. The shoot lasted almost 14 hours and took an unfortunate turn when one of the crew members accidentally left with Michael’s car keys.  It was an absolutely exhausting but exciting day.

Over the last three years and four video shoots, I’ve learned that you really don’t need a lot of money to make a great video, and often times one simple concept can carry a project and make it great. The most important part of any collaboration is finding the right people to team up with; those who are equally driven and devoted to bringing your song to life. So to any bands out there looking to make a video for the first time, shop around for the right director and start brainstorming.

Bringing one of your songs to life through the art of film can be challenging, stressful, and intimidating. From production to shooting to editing to color correction, there is so much that needs to go right in order for a concept to be successfully carried out, and for a video to ultimately look great. In collaborating with so many film people, I continue to be blown away by the artistic drive of these talented individuals, as well as their amazing professionalism. It’s been fascinating to see the commonalities between the two art forms of film and music, while comparing our various stories. Art should never be limited to just one form, and through my work on these music videos, I’ve been fortunate enough to experience the awesome marriage of music and film.

Check out Connor Frost’s Professional Spotlight here.

Image: Connor Frost

Professional SpotlightSpotlight

Whether it is a role in the theater, on a television show, or in movies, Caroline Lindy will seriously impress you with her talent. A graduate of Kenyon college with a focus on Drama, Caroline not only has incredible acting skills, but she adds depth to her work with her study of dramatic literature. With diverse experiences on the sets of an operetta, Law & Order: SVU, Liberal Arts, and most recently a music video, Caroline is learning a lot and excelling in her career. Despite her success, Caroline also experiences self-doubt every now and then, but her positive outlook keeps her motivated. Continue reading to learn what advice Caroline has for youth interested in acting, what she has learned from being a working actress, and how she determined what to study in college.

Name: Caroline Lindy
Age: 24
Education: B.A. from Kenyon College
Follow: IMDb

How do you define ‘seizing your youth’?

I define “seizing your youth” as taking full advantage of these years where anything is possible and nothing is off limits. It’s about being open to everything and everybody. When you’re young, it’s your job to never stop learning, growing and figuring out what you want and need from life. It’s a time to take risks, fail, and as corny as it sounds, reach for the stars!

What did you major in at Kenyon College and how did you determine what to study?

Kenyon College has great Drama and English programs, and I was originally interested in studying English. Ultimately, I realized I was more interested in the process of analyzing and physicalizing works of dramatic literature rather than exploring works of fiction and non-fiction. I continued to take English courses but chose to focus on Drama more intensively, and it became my major.

What or who inspired you to become an actress?

I grew up in New York City, and I was lucky enough to have parents who took me to plays and musicals and made me watch Hollywood classic films. I danced next to the television set while watching Singing in the Rain and recited Shakespeare along with Franco Zeffirelli’s Romeo and Juliet. I loved everything about the theater and the screen from a very young age. That exposure is what probably inspired me to pursue a career in the field.

Did you always know that you wanted to act professionally?

Yes, but I didn’t want to admit it to myself for a long time. I was too embarrassed to really audition for any plays until my senior year in high school. Entertaining people is scary territory, and it took me awhile to develop the confidence to be able to sometimes fail and embarrass myself in front of an audience.

What was your first professional acting role, and how did you go about securing it?

My first professional acting role was when I was in the sixth grade. I took an after-school musical class where we sang show tunes, and I performed with great gusto. The teacher knew the director of the Bronx Opera Company, and I landed my first role in their production of “Boccaccio”, an operetta. I played one of the village children and sang in the chorus, and I was totally delighted. It was the most exciting thing that could have happened to sixth grade Caroline Lindy.

You were in an episode of Law & Order: SVU. What was that experience like and what was your biggest take away?

The experience was very exciting! SVU films in NYC, but I got the email about an audition just as my plane landed back in Los Angeles after a visit to NYC. I quickly filmed my audition and sent it to the NY casting office. I got the part, and had to turn right around and fly back east. Filming only took a day, but was a total blast. Everyone was warm, welcoming and professional! I felt very lucky to have been given a role.

You are in the new Dizzy Bats music video, GIRLS. What was it like shooting a music video, and how is the process different than filming for a movie or television show?

Most music videos require actors to focus primarily on expressions and gestures as opposed to text and dialogue. I actually find shooting a music video to sometimes be harder than shooting a scene for screen, because you are provided with less information about your character and have to be comfortable just being yourself with a camera right on your face.

What was your favorite scene to shoot in the GIRLS music video? What was the hardest scene?

I really enjoyed the scene that we shot on the Ferris wheel.  The views of Los Angeles and the Malibu mountains off in the distance were truly breathtaking! The hardest scenes were the driving scenes. Connor [Frost] was driving and I kept on distracting him, almost causing us to get into minor accidents. Luckily we made it out alive. Don’t film and drive!

Caroline Lindy

What is one of the greatest lessons you have learned from being a working actress?

Stay a student. Never stop learning from people who have been in the industry for longer than you.  Don’t be afraid of rejection – it’s inherently part of the profession, so learn to accept it and move on. Once you stop being afraid of hearing the word “NO,” then you can start having more fun at auditions, and start showing casting directors and other industry folks your true artistry.

What advice do you have for youth who want to be professional actors/actresses?

Being a professional actress demands that you throw yourself into an incredibly competitive group of people with giant egos and enormous amounts of talent. However, it is also an industry that embraces the individual. The most important piece of advice I think I could give a young actress would be to just be you. When you’re just starting out, bring yourself into every audition, because there might be a million girls who look and sound similar to you, but there’s no one who is exactly you. So show that to the world! If this casting director doesn’t love you, the next one will! As long as you’re enjoying the process of building a career, don’t give up.

What does a day in your life look like?

When you’re an actress you have to be ready to embrace an unpredictable schedule. I get auditions notices throughout the week and therefore have to keep my schedule fairly open and flexible. I usually try to start off my day with physical and vocal warm ups, followed by auditions, classes or rehearsals (if I’m in a show). I’m also constantly taking on freelance work to supplement my income.

How do you overcome self-doubt or stage fright?

There are times when I feel terrified or feel like a failure, and I say things to myself like, “maybe I should go to Medical School.” However, I remind myself that my favorite feeling in the world is being on stage and feeling the energy of an audience. I love acting because I love entertaining people, I love telling stories and I love being around other people who like to create those stories with me. It’s my favorite thing to do, and it keeps me motivated and inspired.

What motivates you?

My parents, other family members and friends. Without their support, I wouldn’t be able to pursue this career.

What advice would you give your 15-year-old self?

Dare to be different! As long as you are a considerate, thoughtful and good person, who cares what people think of you? Be yourself and have fun. Life is too short to live any other way.

SpotlightYouth Spotlight

You’ve already met the manager and lead singer of Dizzy Bats, Connor Frost. Now it’s time to meet the drummer, Eric Segerstrom. While being Dizzy Bats’s drummer, Eric also attends Juilliard in New York City. Eric realized his passion for music at an early age and has pursued it relentlessly. Dizzy Bats has some exciting things happening in the next couple of months, including the music video release of their most recent single, Girls, which premieres today (check it out HERE)! Until then, let’s get to know some more about Eric… 

When did you join Dizzy Bats?
I joined Dizzy Bats in the fall of 2012, in September or October.

How do you contribute to the songwriting or music composition process?
Usually Connor will bring in songs that he’s written and I’ll come up with beats that I think would fit well. Then we go back and forth changing small things in both the song and the drum part until it’s somewhere where all of us like it.

What has been your favorite tour moment?
Although I’ve only been on one tour with DB, my favorite moment might’ve been when one of our shows got cancelled and we spent the whole day playing Star Wars monopoly, hah.

When did you realize you wanted to do music professionally?
Sometime in high school when I noticed that that’s really all I enjoyed doing/was good at doing.

Erik

What is your favorite Dizzy Bats song to play live?
Connor just wrote a song that’s super pop-punky and really loud and fast. I think we’re playing it on our next show, and its just a minute and a half of D-beat fun.

What is your pre-show ritual?
Hm, I don’t really think I have a “ritual.” I guess I try to stretch and tune all the drums before every show, so maybe that counts as a ritual?

How do you combat stage fright?
There’s this class I’ve had to take at college called Ear Training, and every week you have to get up infront of the class and do some form of recitation, which is anything from singing atonal melodies to performing insane rhythmic exercises. Having to do this every week for every year at school has kind of numbed me to performing in front of people. If I can mess up singing an interval in front of a class and get past it, I think I can mess up anything in front of a crowd and get past it.

 How many hours a day do you practice?
No where near enough.

Any tips for learning how to play an instrument?
Lessons can be great, but if you don’t click with your teacher, they can actually be detrimental. You do you and if you really want to, find someone who will help you do exactly what you want to do.

How has your experience at Juilliard influenced your work with Dizzy Bats?
Not very much. I’m at school for music composition, so all of my drumming stuff is just on the side.

Erik 2

Girls

EducationSkillsTravel

Friends, I’ll start out by saying that this tour, my fifth trip in two years, was no doubt the best and most rewarding.  The hard work that we’ve put in over the last thirty six months is truly starting to pay off, and it’s all very exciting.  I feel very proud and fortunate to be a part of this project.

3/12-3/15:  LA
The purpose of this LA trip was two-fold:  to play a show and shoot a music video.  The latter was a total blast and was the first time I personally have had a hand in the production process of a video.  We shot at various locations in Manhattan Beach and Santa Monica, and was culminated by the “Santa Monica Pier Police” shutting us down. Rock.

 tour post 1
3/16-3/18:  Bay Area
The show at Hotel Utah in SF was no doubt one of the most incredible performance experiences I’ve ever had the pleasure of being a part of, as friends, family, and fans all came out to support.  It was such a special night.  Shout out to local artist Matt Jaffe and his band, Matt Jaffe and the Distractions, for headlining and being great dudes.  The days were spent in my buddy’s backyard lounging and writing music.  Two-thirds of an EP written.

 

tour post 2
3/19-3/22:  Pacific Northwest
The show in Portland, OR at Shaker and Vine was a very weird but cool bill.  Local act, Rainstick Cowbell, who has toured the world extensively, headlined the night and could not have been more generous and welcoming.  Our show in Salem, OR was filled with people who were legitimately happy to have us, and their kindness, while refreshing, also freaked me out a bit.  I spent the day food truck-hopping in Portland. Washington is a beautiful state.  I spent some time in Seattle eating amazing Chinese food and strangely getting into Gonzaga basketball.  Our show at Cafe Racer w/ Jacob Cummings and The Experience was a perfect way to end this trip.
tour post 3
Huge thank yous all around to those who fed me, clothed me, and provided me with a towel.  I am so lucky. Thanks again.

-Connor