Nearly 30-year film and television actor from Los Angeles, Troy Ruptash, hosted a youth and adult acting workshop at the Elks Hall in Vegreville on August 10.
Ruptash has written the new film, They Who Surround Us, which honours Ukrainian settlers and their culture, and he will also be acting and directing the film. He and other production team members are formerly from Vegreville and he is thrilled with the opportunity to give back to the community.
According to Sandra Coley, the youth workshop included imagination exercises to give the young actors direction on how to be in the moment and forget that there is an audience watching. Some of the youth also worked with Troy on a scene from the movie to learn about working with a director.
The adults were given material to work on and were taught more advanced techniques. Some of the children and adults in attendance may be invited for an audition. Ruptash was thankful for his family’s support on workshop day including his mom sharing her homemade oatmeal cookies!
“To see all the children seated in their chairs up front with their parents off to the side watching was so special. We had let the word out that one of the lead roles in the film is an eight-year-old boy and that it hadn’t been cast yet, so to look over and see a ton of eager and excited 7-10-year-old boys anxiously awaiting instructions will be making me smile for a long time.
What a joy it was to meet all these local residents as well as people that came from afar. I led them through some warm-up breathing and relaxation exercises, concentration work, and some improvs and imagination exercises to create a sense of place. The time flew by. In fact, we went over our allotted time and the truth is I could have kept going for another couple of hours at least.
When I set out to develop this project, one of the things that were important to me was giving back to my community. This project is teaching me so much about community and connection and sharing this workshop with all these people was kind of the definition of all of that. I hope everyone who participated had fun, I know I did!” said Ruptash.