Interview with actress, Sandy Simona, of LOST IN LVOV

Sandy Simona wrote and is starring in a multimedia-solo performance-storytelling-love letter called LOST IN LVOV.  It is inspired by her Russian-Jewish family.  Her parents immigrated to the United States and have many stories to share.

The Playbill Collector (TPC): Give me some background about your family and how you got introduced to performing.

Sandy Simona (SS): When I was four years old, my brother had a bar mitzvah.  It was the first time my parents brought me to a restaurant with live music.  I sprinted to the dance floor and started dancing.  I have pictures of me putting on a performance as if the music was playing for me and I was performing for people.  I was feeling the music.  Right after that, they put me into dance class.  I started as a dancer in jazz and ballroom latin dance.
TPC: Did you go to college for arts?
SS: My family are immigrants.  I’m the first born American in my family.  There was no question that I would go to college and I studied journalism at Rutgers.  My passion though was to be on camera or stage.
TPC: What was your first gig?
SS: When I was 18 I booked an on-air host on Total Request Live (TRL) for “The Pirates of the Caribbean”.  I got to interview Johnny Depp, Keira Knightly and others.
unnamedTPC: You wrote your current show, LOST IN LVOV.  Have you always been a writer?
SS: Growing up I wrote a lot.  When I went to Cal Arts for grad school, I decided I wanted to write a story about my family and play all the characters.
TPC: What does the show look like?
SS: The show is a love letter to New York City and a tribute to my family.  This is the fourth time I’ve performed this piece.  I’ve always performed it with musicians but in New York City, I am doing it all alone.  No musicians, completely solo.  The audience comes in like a family gathering.  However, I’ve got home footage of my family playing during parts of the show.
TPC: How many characters do you play in the show?
SS: Myself, my mom and her two sisters, my grandmother, my grandfather, my father and a few surprise characters in the story.  There are about ten characters in the piece.  They all talk to each other as well.
TPC: How long is the piece and what does the theater look like?
SS: It’s one hour.  The theater is very small, around 50 seats.
TPC: What’s the timeline of the piece?
SS: It starts in the World War 2 era and goes to present day.
TPC: What are the next steps after this?
SS: Heading back to Los Angeles and work on some film and television projects.  However, I’ve got a week after the show ends to meet with some people and audition.  I’m excited about creating personal narrative theater that is multi-media.  I’d love to teach, hence getting my masters degree.
The show has only two performances in NYC and both are almost sold out!  For more information check out:  www.lostinlvov.com
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