CHI-lebrity Chat: Actor Steve West

Starring in London's original West End Production of Mamma Mia and performing live for her Royal Majesty Queen Elizabeth II, actor Steve West is definitely an emerging performer to keep on your radar. Plus, he has even worked with Oscar Nominee Jennifer Tilly in the horror film Seed of Chuckie!

With the Theatre District and Broadway appeal of Chicago growing daily, I caught up Mr. West himself for a quick chat on everything from his dream role to tips and advice on how actors in the Windy City can break into the spotlight too.

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What advice do you give for aspiring actors trying to make it into theatre?

Train in everything - singing, dancing and acting, be disciplined and completely focused and get any experience possible! Theatre is a very certain art form. Technically it has a-lot of demands physically, vocally and mentally and learning to work an audience for two hours LIVE is a very demanding craft. There's no re-takes in front of a thousand people unlike film or TV.  

Is it an easy transition to go from stage to on camera work?

They are two very different art forms. Live theatre is all about bringing the story to life and hitting the back row of the auditorium. In camera you can't do that, you have to bear your soul with a look in the eye that says a thousand words. Some actors prefer one to the other but you can excel at both as long as you understand their individual demands and have a good foundation training for theatre work.

What would your ideal role be?

That's always changing but right now, I have been playing a lot of American characters, so I would love to do a British period piece - preferably playing a villain or a cad. Bad guys are always more fun. When else to you get to behave like that!

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