Inspirational Actors Spotlight – Donald Paul – So Rewarding to My Artistic Soul, I don’t feel the Hours

Did you grow up wanting to be an actor? If so, what things helped you achieve your goals?

Growing up I was interested in performance but started out in music. I played the drums in church and was in my school’s drum line, which I feel was a great set up to where I’m at today.

Were friends and family encouraging about your acting goals?

Yes. My mom was a Haitian gospel singer so having another artist in the household was a huge help.

What is one myth about actors that you try to dispel?

That we are always dramatic and loud but I’m like the total opposite. I’m even keen and pretty chill. Almost very quiet actually haha.

Which is more important: training, talent or knowing someone?

I’d say training. Training gives you the tools to be able to work in anything situation and environment. Training, in other words, gives you a foundation.

How much time do you have to put into your trade?

Well, in this trade you are constantly working. Nonstop. The hours seem endless but because it’s so rewarding to my artistic soul, I don’t feel the hours. I put in five years of school and two years traveling the country doing theatre in multiple cities before making it back to New York where I landed a role on tv.

Tell us about your toughest day as an actor?

Toughest day as an actor for me is when I receive a script and really like it but I have trouble connecting with the material. Either it’s the role or just the scenes not fully making sense to me.

What about your best day?

Best day is when I have multiple auditions in one day and make it to all of them on time. The city and traffic can be crazy on most days in New York City.

What is the toughest thing about acting?

The unknown. In this industry, things change so fast, in a way where you’re forced to keep up. Any small role can become a major role or any major role can be cut down to a small role or just axed. So you never know.

Do you get recognized and how does it make you feel?

Yes, I do. I feel good because being recognized means to me that they liked the work I brought or just simply watched projects I’ve been part of.

What do you feel are your strengths as an actor?

My ability to dive into roles and disappear. I feel that I do a good job of bouncing from dramatic roles to comedic roles and back.

Do you have an acting “Bucket list?”

I usedNowadays list. Nowadays I just try to stay active as an artist. If I had a list today, first on that list would be to do a show on Broadway. Being from a heavy theatre background, Broadway is the only thing I haven’t done yet.

Who are your inspirations?

My sister and mother hands down were my biggest role models and influencers growing up. Jeannie(sister) and Fleurina(mother) are the most resilient women you’ll ever meet. They don’t back down to anything and don’t give up on anything. Having them by my side throughout this journey as an actor have been nothing but a gift.

Favorite movie?

Training Day!

What are some of your tips for aspiring actors/actresses?

Have patience. As an artist, we sometimes want everything right away and/or all at the same time and when we don’t, we tend to get frustrated. So I’d say “Patience is Key” to the young emerging actors. It takes time for things to develop in this industry.

Is it tough to balance acting and intimate relationships?

It can be. In the acting world, you can have extremely long hours and/or travel and being away filming. Pursuing an acting career requires a tremendous amount of patience from your partner. If you don’t have that in the relationship, it can become a distraction to your career.

Is it easier to be in a relationship with another person in the entertainment industry?

Yes, because they understand the industry and the inner workings of it on a similar level.

What takes up your free time?

Traveling, hanging out with family, going to cool restaurants because I’m a total foodie. I also really love sports so any sporting event I can make it to, I’m there!

What are you working on next?

I was just cast on the Oprah OWN network series, Love Is _______ I’m set to play Johnny in the independent film, “Misty Button.” Summary: After being asked to place a ten thousand dollar bet on a racehorse, James and Eoin make the fatal mistake of pocketing the money. The two Irish emigres face a crisis when Misty Button comes in at 35-1.

Also starring in the new show “GROWN” which will be coming out in late May on Complex.

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