ONE ON ONE WITH BRIAN OGOLA
"I am a very hard working Kenyan. i love acting, I love being on stage and in front of the camera. i am going to do great things in this industry, I already know."
For the avid follower of the bi-monthly Actors Monologue challenge, Brian Ogola does not need any introduction. He won the audience choice competition in the 1st event, came 2nd in the main challenge two times consecutively. You may also have caught him on the hit series "Love101" that airs on KTN every Wednesday at 10pm.
Sam Kiranga got a chance to have a one on one with Brian and got to find out a little bit more about this thespian.
How did your acting journey begin?
I have always been interested in acting even in my childhood. I first started acting professionally after high school. I was in a musical called Color Of God at the All Saints Cathedral. That followed with the sequel Color Of God 2. From there on I got what I would call my first big break and that was a ‘Village Musical’. That was in 2012, it was a musical called Gangsters Paradise. I got to work with some pretty amazing people, who are very talented and good at what they do. One person in particular is Mugambi Nthiga. He was our director and the kind of growth as an actor that I experienced under his wing was humbling. What happened next for me was a major turning point in my rather novice career at the time. It was in August 2012 when I met my acting coach David D. Morin at an acting seminar called Hollywood Acting 101. With the confidence that I had acquired up until that time I would say we met at the perfect time because what he had to offer was exactly what I need to hear and do to move to the next level of my career. He taught me how to be a professional and how to handle the business side of showbiz as my very first lesson. And almost immediately after that I have always been getting roles or callbacks at an audition. What he taught me has helped me build a formidable profile in both my personal acting skills and in the business. From then on we have been organizing regular acting classes which are still ongoing.
Not long after that I had the priviledge of working with Seth and Daisy Busolo who head hunted me from a mutual friend and colleague. We did an awesome play called Poison Ivy which was a huge success for us. Currently I am regular in Lies that Bind and Love 101. More doors and opportunities keep on opening for me and all glory and honour is to the lord Jesus.
Is it a career or a hobby? A career. definitely
Why acting? Growing up I never was able to settle on a profession or a career, always finding myself to be somewhat a jack of all trades. And that is how acting appealed to me because in the acting world, the possibilities are endless. You can be whatever and whoever you want to be. It’s not pretending, it’s real. And like David Morin says in almost all his acting classes “acting is living truthfully under imaginary circumstances”. The emotions are real and that brings everything on a set or on a stage to life for me. I love it.
Who are some of your favourite actors locally/ Mentors? Simiyu Barasa. Raymond Ofula
Who in the world of film making would you be nervous to meet? James Cameron. Tarantino. Christopher Nolan. And many more.
How would you describe your experience with the Actor’s Monologue?
The AMC has been an amazing experience for me. It’s a wonderful platform for upcoming actors. For me personally, it has been a wonderful way of benchmarking myself in terms of growth and also as a way of improving my profile as an actor in the industry. I will always be a supporter of the AMC and I encourage everyone out there who wants to be an actor to always try out.
How would you describe your process of mastering a monologue?
I first master the text. This usually involves reading the piece at least ten to a hundred times in a day if possible. Become one with the text such that it’s no longer about the specific words but about the story and message being conveyed. Only then will I rehearse and do my research. I also always do some character work before any rehearsals, and basically make sure I have every possible detail of who I am and who I am talking to in the monologue.
What about your future plans? I want to follow where this road in acting will lead me to. I want to be the best at what I do and succeed at it. I want to grow beyond my potential and achieve all I can as an actor. I want to be the best I can be as an actor, whether that is Hollywood or in our very own theatre houses and local screen only time will tell.
Words to upcoming actors in the industry at large?
Make sure you ‘give yourself permission’ to be an actor. No one told Will Smith or Denzel Washington or even Brad Pitt that they could be actors. It’s a decision that you make for yourself from deep within. Make sure you are very passionate about your work and never ever give up; learn to deal with rejection because there is a lot of it in this industry
What’s your current and future outlook for the film industry?I want to thank His Excellency The President; Uhuru Kenyatta. He is doing so much to push for growth in the film industry. There is so much potential and the talent and work ethic is just perfect. The only direction is up.
Interviewed by Sam Kiranga
Courtesy of: FilmKenya