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BIO

I was born in Minneapolis to garden-loving parents, moved to New Orleans at 18 months so Dad could go to grad school, and landed in Charleston, SC when I was 3 years old (Dad’s schooling led to a job there). I stayed there until I was 17. As all of my family has emigrated West at this point, I spend many springs pining for the smell of jasmine and marshy water and many summers completely fine with being out of that heat. Charleston had an incredible children’s theatre company. When I was 5 I was cast as Gretl in The Sound of Music and that was that. I was lucky enough to have many many chances to try my hand on stage, and every time I did I knew more and more that acting was what I wanted to do.

I left South Carolina in my senior year of high school to attend the prestigious North Carolina School of the Arts’ high school acting program. It was there I had a taste of conservatory training, and when it came time to apply for colleges, I was sure I was going the conservatory route on the East Coast, destined for a theatre career in New York. Then I got a 4-year ride to USC in Los Angeles, and my whole plan changed. I flew out here site unseen with my mother and all these years later here I am. I studied in the theatre school there, received my BFA, still toyed with moving to New York, but ultimately felt I loved my life in Los Angeles. I loved my friends, I loved the theatres I had started to work with, I loved the way the mountains and the ocean bumped up against each other, I had started practicing yoga and wow did I love yoga. Plus I still thought I’d be a movie star.

Here in LA I have worked with incredible theatre artists and incredible companies. I’ve done theatre in the alleys of downtown LA and in a swimming pool in Studio City. I have a great commercial career, and recently started doing some voiceover work too. Sometimes I land on TV or in a movie, and I love that too—this actor life works for me.

But I think it works for me because there’s a lot in life that I’m passionate about, and at the top of that list are my three children. My number one job on any day is doing what I can to help them feel free to be who they came into this world to be. They are, as cliche as it sounds, my greatest teachers—I see the best and worst sides of myself with them and nothing or no one has ever driven me to seek to be the highest version of myself as they do. My husband and I have been together for 17 years, and I’m madly in love with him. Writing excites me (I had a blog for years and am bringing it back here yay! I’m working on a scripted project with a friend, I journal A LOT and have written for different magazines over the years), going somewhere I’ve never been each year excites me, contributing to causes and organizations that are fighting for positive change in this world excites me. I am not without my darkness and demons, but I find living so wonderful, and if all else fails there is always a house project which could use my attention and there is always a book I want to read and there is always a friend I can reach out to. I’m a big believer in gratitude lists—it’s too easy to forget, to easy to get caught up in what someone else is, has or does. I want to keep diving deeper into who I am and what I’m here to do and stay thankful for all I am so blessed to have. And thank YOU for spending some time here. Perhaps our paths will cross in real time.

Melanie