Monday, December 16, 2013

You really shouldn't be here

This is an old blog. Please find me on Twitter or Instagram for my recent work. Thanks! TEP

Sunday, November 7, 2010


Up and coming actress Chantal Thuy has been the talk of her hometown for sometime now; but after some stellar performances, in recent short films and on stage, New York, and the rest of the world, are starting to take notice. We recently met over tea to talk about her flourishing career.

Tamy: Hi Chantal, how does it feel to be back in Montreal this weekend?

Chantal Thuy: It feels great. I think Montreal will always be my home. You know I grew up here. This is where I got the acting bug and began training with some really great teachers at ASM (Actor’s Studio of Montreal). I will always be grateful to the theatre community here for giving me my break.

T: I remember watching you in Lysistrata. Even then I knew you were going far!

CT: (Laughs) I remember. That was such a long time ago! Was it in 2003 or 2004? And we did our first interview afterwards, didn’t we?

T: Yes. Even back then I knew your career would be worth following. So what's changed in the last 5 years?

CT: Well, nearly everything but some things stay the same. Back then, I was still struggling to figure out what I wanted from my life, I was an actress with lots of ambition and drive. Now, the hard work is paying off and I'm getting to work everyday
in my dream job. I feel very blessed. But some things haven't changed as well - I still love coming home to Montreal and being with my friends and family, going to the Tamtams on Mount Royal and Jazz fest every summer.

T: Well things have certainly changed! Your film was off to London in March and now you're doing a play that is going to Germany in December!

CT: I know, it’s all very exciting. Having work shown in Europe and America is wonderful, especially as London is such a global artistic center. It was a real honor to be accepted there. And I can't wait to got to Germany with the Galli Theatre.

T: In London you had the premier 'Of Anna and Dreams' of course, where you played legendary Asian American film star Anna May Wong. Tell us a little about the project.

CT: It was a film piece commissioned for the Chinatown Art Space in London, and has been shown all over the world. I got to work with O (Zhang - multi award winning artist), and she's amazing. I just found out it is going to the Hong Kong Art festival
in the spring of 2011. The project was a real labour of love. It's great to work with someone with such passion.

T: Apparently she delayed shooting till she found the correct Anna. It's like she was waiting for you. What a compliment.

CT: Yes, I actually auditioned for the part very late in the process, a few weeks before she began shooting because she had not found the right actress. I felt like I had a very good audition, but you never know with these things sometimes, so I was thrilled to get her phone call! I felt very lucky to have been chosen to portray Anna May Wong, it was a real privilege. She was an exceptional woman. So full of grace and generosity, but such a fighter. I love her spirit.

T: How do you prepare to play a character like that, especially one from a different era?

CT: I watched all her films and read all her letters. To begin with, I did a lot of research and then made it my job to be a keen observer of her speech patterns, mannerisms and persona. To really let her being sink into me. Once I felt I had enough information, I let all the homework go and I found her essence in my own heart. Then I could just let it all flow in the moment as we filmed. O (Zhang) asked me to reinterpret her, not just copy her; this allowed me to channel her soul whilst creating something fresh.

And it’s funny, because in the end, the era doesn't really make a difference. She faced the same struggle that is going on snow, though in a higher degree, but in different costumes. She was struggling to give the Asian American women a presence on the big screen, and we're still struggling right now. There's not many of us who are working regularly. I'm very lucky. Anna's story is still hugely relevant.

T: What do you think of people who say you're the new Anna May Wong?

CT: Haha, that’s flattering, but I couldn’t believe it--Anna is my idol! I would love to carve my path as she has, working in the United States, Canada and Europe. Being an international actress is the way of the future, especially as we are becoming more
and more in tune with other cultures and countries through the internet, as we know from your blog. But it's an honor to follow in her footsteps. And I'm having fun just finding my way in this new landscape of entertainment!

You can see Chantal as part of the Interpretations film competition giving another wonderful performance, in the piece “Penny Royal”. You can also catch her Off Broadway in New York City, playing the a female lead for the Galli Theatre in New York City before they leave for Germany in December. I hear she has many other exciting (undisclosed) film projects in the pipeline; and I know I'm not alone when I say that I can't wait to see a lot more of her.

Friday, August 20, 2010

How can you buy or sell the Earth?

In 1854, the United States Government offered to buy two million acres of Indian land in the Northwest. Below is a tranlation of Chief Sealth's (Seattle) reply to President Franklin Pierce in December of that year. It has been described as the most beautiful and prophetic statement on the environment ever made.

The Great Chief in Washington sends word that he wishes to buy our land. The Great Chief also sends us words of friendship and good will. This is kind of him, since we know he has little need of our friendship in return. But we will consider your offer.

How can you buy or sell the sky, the warmth of the land? The idea is strange to us. If we do not own the freshness of the air and the sparkle of the water, how can you buy them? Every part of this earth is sacred to my people. Every shining pine needle, every sandy shore, every mist in the dark woods, every clearing, and every humming insect is holy in the memory and experience of my people. The sap which courses through the trees carries the memories of the red man.

So, when the Great Chief in Washington sends word that he wishes to buy our land, he asks much of us... This we know: All things are connected. Whatever befalls the earth befalls the sons of the earth. Man did not weave the web of life; he is merely a strand in it. Whatever he does to the web, he does to himself.

But we will consider your offer to go to the reservation you have for my people. We will live apart, and in peace. One thing we know, which the white man may one day discover - our God is the same God.

You may think now that you own Him as you wish to own our land: but you cannot. He is the God of man; and His compassion is equal for the red man and the white. This earth is precious to Him and to harm the earth is to heap contempt on its Creator.

The whites too shall pass; perhaps sooner than all other tribes. Continue to contaminate your bed, and you will one night suffocate in your own waste. But in your perishing you will shine brightly, fired by the strength of the God who brought you to this land and for some special purpose gave you dominion over this land and over the red man.

That destiny is a mystery to us, for we do not understand when the buffalo are all slaughtered, the wild horses are tamed, and the view of the ripe hills blotted by talking wires. Where is the thicket? Gone. Where in the eagle? Gone. And what is it to say goodbye to the swift pony and the hunt? The end of living and the beginning of survival.

So we will consider your offer to buy the land. If we agree, it will be to secure the reservation you have promised. There, perhaps, we may live out our brief days as we wish. When the last red man has vanished from the earth, and his memory is only the shadow of a cloud moving across the prairie, these shores and forests will still hold the spirits of my people. For they love this earth as a newborne loves its mother's heartbeat.

So, if we sell our land, love it as we've loved it. Care for it as we've cared for it. Hold in your mind the memory of the land as it is when you take it. And preserve it for your children, and love God loves us all. One thing we know. Our God is the same God. This earth is precious to Him. Even the white man cannot be exempt from the common destiny. We may be brothers after all. We shall see.

Friday, August 13, 2010

Surf's up, New York

Thursday, May 20, 2010

Extrait du Documentaire: Biosphere Demain c'est Maintenant

Wow. Je suis assise à mon bureau chez Sid Lee et je viens de visionner un extrait du documentaire Biosphère Demain C'est Maintenant, qui vient tout juste d'être publié sur Escapades.TV

Il y a quelque temps, j'étais partie en Afrique pour travailler comme reporter sur ce documentaire et je suis vraiment émue de voir les images qui ont été tournées.

C'est la première fois que je vois les images des entrevues que nous avons tournées et je suis vraiment fière du résultat.

La sortie officielle du documentaire aura lieu en Novembre 2010, mais d'ici là, voici de quoi vous mettre sous la dent!

Thursday, May 6, 2010

Sunday, April 18, 2010

This makes me really happy


Found on the newly discovered and totally amazing Dujour Magazine website.