Hi Lance, welcome to VENTS! How have you been?
Things are going well, just doing my best to keep busy and stay positive during this pandemic.
How were you drawn into the world of acting?
Growing up I always enjoyed participating in theater and school plays. I discovered my passion for acting by simply watching how people responded to my presence. For as long as I can remember, I have always loved to entertain and whatever room I went in, I seem to get a lot of attention. Back then, I was just simply dancing or telling jokes – but that’s how it all started. I discovered I had a special way with people, I liked them, and they liked me back! At that time, I had no idea that acting could be a career. Things got a little more formal in 2017 when I began taking acting classes in my former home town of West Chester, Ohio. That led to me participating in a talent showcase which sparked interest from both a talent agent and manager from Los Angeles.
How would you say your early background on theater and acting class has influence your entire approach to acting?
I can honestly say that I, 100 percent, still pull from my early foundation and training when it comes to my comedic roles. I developed my improv skills from acting class and although I have an entirely new coaching team here in Los Angeles, it’s the “old skills” that never let me down!
Let’s talk about perhaps your biggest role yet on Family Reunion – what was the audition process like?
I auditioned for more than one role on the show which is not uncommon for new shows, however, when I read for Elvis, I simply could not stop thinking about the audition because I instantly connected with this character! To help my nerves and maintain my sanity, I have a rule to forget about auditions when I leave the casting office. I went in 3 times for the role of Elvis and the first time was the most nerve racking because of the required country accent. My final audition for Elvis was actually on the Paramount Lot on a Wednesday in October, I will never forget that call back! I wasn’t really nervous but it appeared the call back group was getting smaller and smaller and I needed to nail every aspect of my performance.
Getting to perform with some of these big names from the film and even sports industry coming together for this show – were you much nervous?
No, I’m rarely nervous when working as long as I am prepared! I do my best to over prepare so that I can relax and have a great time on set. Occasionally, during a live taping with audience, my nerves may bother me when I receive new lines on the spot.
With Netflix releasing their entire seasons on release date – how’s usually the filming experience?
The filming experience is interesting because so far, we have never started the work week on Mondays. When we taped Part 1, the week started on Wednesday with rehearsals and concluded with taping on Monday the following week and live shows on Tuesdays. It was a little strange at first, but I learned to adjust. Having the season released in parts is fine except when my friends and family binge watch all episodes and immediately expect more. I find it hilarious and remind them it takes an entire week to create one episode.
The role of Elvis tends to be short on the series in comparison to the leads, yet you always strike gold with that amount of screen time – first of all, do you personally feel much pressure when reading and preparing?
Yes, of course there is always pressure, perhaps I’m placing it on myself but it’s there! Because Elvis is a recurring role, I realize the writers have a choice to include or exclude my character. Hence, I put everything I have into Elvis every time he shows up on screen! I take pride in Elvis because he is so much like me ! We share a lot of the same interests and his entrepreneurial skills and self-confidence are top-notch. The girl he’s in love with, Jade, barely knows he exists – but he’s so confident, he doesn’t let her rejection bother him. It takes a lot to break my spirit and Elvis is the same way. It’s an honor bringing this character to life and when I’m reading and preparing, I give Elvis my all.
Most of Elvis personality walks the thin line between upbeat yet there’s a dryness to it – does the character and script ask for it or is that your own personal take?
It’s a combination of the script and my own personal take on it. Yes, although the character is young, upbeat and fun loving, he is also a rather “old soul”. Elvis has to be very mature and responsible because he runs a business, very involved in his church community and there are times on screen where he has to take on a leadership role among the kids.
What would you call the most challenging aspect of playing Elvis?
The biggest challenge I face in playing the role of Elvis is doing my country accent which is required for the character. Obviously, I don’t talk like that on a daily basis and any little throat pain or fatigue can affect my vocal cords. Depending on the shooting schedule and rehearsals, I can find myself struggling with my voice especially if I have any sinus or cold symptoms. I have learned over time that drinking green tea with honey for my throat is a very big help!
What else is happening next in Lance Alexander’s world?
I am presently using some of the down time to concentrate on my voice-over skills. Voice-over and animation are next on my vision board. My mom is big on creating vision boards so we can visually track our progress, see our goal and create a level of accountability for what we do with our time.