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When I graduated from high school, I had artistic and academic scholarships, and I was trying to figure out what to do. I decided to audition for the Royal Academy of Dramatic Arts, Juilliard and the National Institute of Dramatic Arts in Sydney, Australia.
Deborah Kara Unger
Best fight ever in a movie: 'They Live.' I want to do a martial arts version of that, where you think it's ended, and it just keeps on going. I love that fight. It was funny as well. Unexpected.
Performing arts was something I was always part of. That was may be the only common thread that ran throughout my education, throughout my schooling years. But apart from that, there were no friends or no long term associations. That was the only thing I knew was with me wherever I went.
I do regret that when I went to college, I didn't have a liberal arts education. I got a BFA in musical theater, so it was a very directed toward what I was doing. I wish that I had expanded my horizons a little bit.
The essays in The Great Taos Bank Robbery were my project to win a Master of Arts degree in English when I quit being a newspaper editor and went back to college.
Not having finished high school and having been fairly utilitarian in the way I went about college, I didn't have a deep liberal arts background. So we'd go to lunch and people would talk about their favorite seventeenth-century poets, and I'd be thinking, 'Could I even name five poets? From any century?'
It was something I was more interested in myself. When I went to see my sister dance at ballet, I was really into costumes and the arts, and my family was also supportive of whatever me and my sister wanted to do. I would say I pushed myself the most to be into design.
I didn't get a Bachelor's degree - I got a Bachelor's of Fine Arts, which means I didn't have to take humanities, math, and stuff like that. I think I had to take Art History, which I failed a few times.
I tend not to dwell on the parallels between chess and business, chess and the martial arts, or any two things for that matter, because the truth is that all pursuits are connected if we gain an eye for the thematic links.
Quite honestly I never had a desire to be an actor. I tell people, I did not choose acting; acting chose me. I never grew up wanting to be an actor. I wanted to play football. In about 9th grade an English teacher told me I had a talent to act. He said I should audition for a performing arts high school so I did on a whim. I got accepted.
Lou Tyrrell has created a theatre that is a safe haven for playwrights, a birthing center for new American writing. Arts Garage has created a vital, enthusiastic audience for theatre, music, painting and sculpture in Delray Beach.
I've been working with Disney all these years doing voice work, and now I'm signed with Disney Fine Arts, doing 'Beauty and the Beast' oil paintings. So it's been an ongoing wonderful job.
Most people say I look mean, and because I play so many tough roles and because of my size and my martial arts background, they think I am, but I'm really not.
Michael Jai White
The martial arts that I got into was because of Bruce Lee and Jackie Chan, because of all of the animal styles at the time. It was around about the time when Jackie was doing 'Drunken Master,' and, like, Snake versus this and that.
People have had certain assumptions in the past about Conservative governments, partly because of some of the things that happened in the 1980s, and partly because of the tone of some of the debate in the 1980s that appeared to say public spending on the arts was something you might want to progressively reduce.
I wanted to work in the arts. My dream come true would be to be an architectural historian and work with the royal palaces and all the fabulous art collections. But I'm not committed enough.
My martial arts background is Tae Kwon Do.
Will Yun Lee
I studied fine arts and architecture, but I decided to move into movie design because I grew up in a small town in the Marche region and spent a lot of time after school in the movie theater.
In the evening, since I have a lot of friends in theater, we might take in a Deaf West production in North Hollywood, or, since I'm a member of the Academy of Television Arts & Sciences, they have screenings that are really great.
My martial arts came a lot from my uncle, who actually taught martial arts through the military. He was a black belt in tae kwon do, but also, he used a lot of military-style fighting where it's not the high kicks or anything like that. It's basically defeat your opponent as fast as possible.
My first concern was to take care of my drawing. I did not have any knowledge in arts, especially Haitian arts, apart from the paintings I saw in my father's office.
I went to a school in N.Y. that is conceptual and interdisciplinary and modeled after Cal Arts. It is not just painting or sculpture; it was everything mixed together.
I didn't go to a normal high school. It was for people in the performing arts.
I didn't have that typical high school experience of feeling ashamed of who I was. I once wore a superman cape and pajamas, and I thought that was awesome - and some people didn't! But some people did, and it was an arts high school, so nobody made me feel bad about who I was.
I wasn't really driven to be an actor or anything, but in college I decided to study acting, much to my parents' disappointment. I attended Mason Gross School of the Arts at Rutgers where Bill Esper was, and that is where I really got hooked on the art of acting, and, almost, the chemistry of acting.
Martin Luther King, Jr.
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