Next Scheduled Dates:
June 19th 9 PM - 12 AM
June 20th 9 PM - 12 AM
July 14th 9 PM – 12 AM
August 4th 9 PM – 12 AM
August 25th 9 PM – 12 AM
September 26th 9 PM – 12 AM
October 16th 9 PM - 12 AM
June 19th 9 PM - 12 AM
June 20th 9 PM - 12 AM
July 14th 9 PM – 12 AM
August 4th 9 PM – 12 AM
August 25th 9 PM – 12 AM
September 26th 9 PM – 12 AM
October 16th 9 PM - 12 AM
One of the Dynamic Duo...Me, has the honor of being interviewed by Vernon Diannah Porter , aka Lady Di tonight @ 615pm on WMOR Radio tonight about our cabaret Comes Love. which we will be performing at Tin Pan Alley Provincetown throughout the season! Our Next performance is May 29th and 30th from 9 pm - 12 am.
Thank you, Thomas Acone for being such a good friend and promotor and setting up the interview.
Here's to a first of many music videos. I hope you enjoy it! Thanks
I love Isabelle! I get her! I know her! Thank you for creating her!
I love being Haitian! I am a 7th generation Haitian who watched my Haitian nanny sacrifice having a family to take care of me from birth to the age of six. I saw her anguish at being away from her fiancé at the time…thankfully without a gun. She waited until she felt I was old enough to move to New York to begin her own family which had been put on hold -- Which I barely forgave her for!
Getting to tell Isabelle’s story would be life changing!
It would be a tribute to my nanny, Lucienne, whom I adore! “Mammie Ten” would be so proud!
Isabelle’s struggle is a provocative way of shining the spot light on the true “backbones” of many households throughout the world who are neglected. Lastly, my middle name is Isabelle which was also my grandmother’s name -- Just another sign!
I am your Isabelle!
With kind regards forever your Isabelle,
PS: Cindy Tolan is simply divine.
By Ardain Isma CSMS Magazine
Despite the seemingly hopeless conditions Haiti is being portrayed around the world, one thing continues to thrive, continues to make its way to the grand stages of all artistic venues: Its art. The protagonists of this glory—one must awesomely say—are the undisputable bearers of a craftsmanship the whole humanity can’t seem to go without.
Award-winning actress Alexandra Foucard is without question one of the ambassadors. Like all Haitians living outside of their homeland, Alexandra could not escape the horror of cultural shock when, at the age of 4, she found herself transplanted into foreign land, an environment completely unknown to her. Like most of her fellow countrymen, she was resilient as not to let any barriers—cultural or linguistic—to keep her from shining. Talented, she truly is to the point where her ever-growing natural aptitude could not escape the eyes of directors and producers alike. Like a tapestry of artistic designs, Alexandra is a singer, screenwriter, and actress in both theatre and film.
I came to know Alexandra Foucard through a colleague who has been watching the steady climb of this impressive actress. This is to say that the finesse of her artistic skills has already made its way to mainstream America, to college campuses long before many of her expatriates had the chance to discover her as one of their own. At first glance, the New York-based actress seems to shed a timid introvertedness that, if it weren’t for her coaches and directors, the public would have never had the opportunity to capture the astonishing flair that dwells under her reddish cinnamon tan. She is a Howard University graduate of Fine Arts.
Throughout her career, Ms. Foucard has clinched several awards, including a NAACP Award for Outstanding Lead Actress in a Play for the role of Adelaide in the musical Guys and Dolls. Foucard was nominated for the prestigious Helen Hayes Award for her turn as Vy in Sheldon Epps’ Play On. That’s not all. She embodied the character of Beneatha in an off-Broadway production of Lorraine Hansberry A Raisin in the Sun. She currently stars in the TV show OFFSEASON. Last week from her home in New York City, Dr. Ardain Isma held a candid conversation with the impressive actress where she spoke about her upbringing, her accomplishments and her hopes for the future.
A.I. Bonjour, Alexandra. We’re happy to have you here at CSMS Magazine. Can you please introduce yourself to the readers?
A.F. Bonjour, my name is Alexandra Foucard. I was born in Haiti. I consider myself to be an amalgamation of many cultures and beliefs based on my family’s diverse background. But the one that supersedes them all is my Haitian roots. I came to the US at the age of four and learned to speak English by watching Sesame Street. I have great affection for my country of origin.
A.I. In your sphere of acting, you’ve come to master the three most important components: television, theater and film. How did you manage to be so skillful?
A.F. Practice, practice and did I mention practice! I think the best actors understand you never stop learning. That’s what makes it so much fun. I’ve been taking voice and acting lessons since the age of 11. I attended the High School of Performing Arts in Miami, Florida. And I continue to take voice and acting lessons now. It’s the only way I am able to keep my instrument sharp.
A.I. What makes an actor stand out is his ability to mold into the character’s mind. In Les Misérables, you have done it in the intriguing role of that prostitute. Weren’t you hesitant in taking that role?
A.F. Each actor has his own process. For me, I draw from my own experiences and circumstances, or similar scenarios which evoke the same emotion. I also do research on the character’s background, surroundings, time period. Once I’ve done all the academic work, I then trust my imagination and allow myself to enjoy the ride.
Yes, I played the role of Fantine. I did not hesitate for a moment. It’s a universal story. She’s a mother who is doing all that she knows to take care of her daughter. When the show begins, Fantine is a factory worker, she then sells her locket, hair, teeth and finally she succumbs to selling her body because she has nothing left to sell. This is a love story, albeit a sad one, of a mother’s love for her child.
A.I. Who discovered your talent? Under what circumstance?
A. F. My father. I was singing in the hallway one day, and he said “Is that the radio?” That’s all it took to give me the confidence to pursue my career. I was 7.
A. I. I understand you have received an NAACP award. What impeccable performance that led the committee to zero-in on you? Did you feel you were at your finest in that performance?
A. F. Yes. I did Guys and Dolls, playing the role of Adelaide opposite Maurice Hines. I believe they came to see the show when we played in LA.
Do I feel it was my finest performance? No! If it were I’d have no reason to keep working. I really feel like I completely understood Adelaide. She’s one of my favorite characters I’ve played.
A.I. Did you get advance notice about the nomination?
A.F. No. In fact, I was doing a show at the time, and my stage manager called me into her office and told me I was nominated.
A.I. When did you realize acting was something you couldn’t do without? What was your folks’ reaction when it became clear you were heading down this path?
A. I. I’ve always known I wanted to act and sing. My parents would take me to the movies in Haiti and I would come back home, make them sit down so I could reenact the film for them. They were great, they totally indulged me.
My father passed away when I was 11, but I’m sure he would have been fine with my chosen profession. My mother, however, although she took me to all my lessons, she was not thrilled, I must say. She did not think it was proper for a Haitian girl to be an actress. It was too close to being a “woman of ill repute” (Laughter)
A.I. How old were you when you left Haiti? Have you been back since then?
A.F. I left Haiti when I was 4 years old. I went back at the age of 28. I found the people there to be exceptionally warm and gracious.
A.I. A colleague at UNF, the university where I teach, is convinced you’re from Jacmel. Is that true? If not, what is your native town in Haiti? Where were you born?
A.F. Well, no, I am not from Jacmel, which I think is a beautiful town. I was born in Gonaives. My family is from Port de Paix and my parents lived in Pétionville until we left Haiti.
A.I. I understand you lived in Miami at some point. Was Miami the first city you lived in after you arrived in the United States? If not, where did your parents settle?
A.F. We first moved to Maryland, but my mother didn’t like the cold weather. So we moved to Miami, Florida. My parents also liked Miami because it was closer to Haiti.
A.I. Did you go to Fine Arts School?
A.F. I did. I went to the High School of Performing Arts (also known as PAVAC) in Miami, Florida. Then I went to Howard University, where I received a BFA in Musical Theatre.
A.I. Do you have or maintain any contact with fellow Haitian-Americans operating in your same sphere of showbiz? If yes, who are they?
A.F. I do. It’s important that we understand that there’s strength in numbers. This business is one that can un-ground you if you’re not mindful. So keeping in touch with my peers is certainly one way to stay true to who I am. One of my good friends is Allan Louis, who went to the High School of Performing Arts with me in Miami, has been in my life for years, obviously. In New York, we have a little Haitian network, where we keep each other informed of upcoming projects.
A.I. Despite the fact you left Haiti at a very young age, it appears you never lost your Creole or French. Is that correct? If yes, how did you manage to keep up with your multilingualism?
A.F. That is absolutely correct. Growing up in my house I was not allowed to speak anything but French. When I became a teenager and had Haitian friends, I began to speak Creole. Hence, the “pastors” accent when I speak Creole.
A.I. At a glance, you fit the profile of a young Ti-Corn or Cornélia Schultz, Haitian songstress and actress who was the lead actress in Anita produced by writer and poet Rassoul Labuchin. Have you ever met Ti-Corn or heard about her?
A.F. Thank you, that’s very flattering. I haven’t had the pleasure of meeting Ti Corn. However, I do enjoy her music. She’s a great artist.
A.I. Are you also a novelist?
A.F. I am not a novelist. I am in the middle of writing a play with music with my collaborator, David Sisco. I also have written a couple of short films.
A.I. How does your Haitianism influence your art, your acting career?
A.F. It affects everything I do. It’s in my core…and I am grateful! It’s an asset.
A.I. Where do you see your career 5 years from now? A production company?
A.F. I see myself being a series regular on a nationally successful episodic, with at least 7 seasons. I also see myself as a principal character in a French film shot in Paris. Lastly, having my show (which I am currently writing) at an Off-Broadway theatre in New York during my hiatus from the show.
I actually had a production company in Miami before I moved to New York, so I’ve checked off that box. (Laughter) I would like to be a producer for some film and episodic. I think that would be fun and certainly challenging.
A.I. What is your advice to young Haitian-Americans inspiring to become actors someday?
A.F. Know your business, become an expert in whatever it is you’re attracted to. Keep learning and take every opportunity to work your craft. Surround yourself with likeminded people and those who will support you. When people are working toward a goal, the universe aligns with them to achieve it.
A.I. It’s been said that stars do not fall from the sky. Even star-apples have to be snapped from their stems. Are there specific individuals you want to thank for your successes in acting?
A.F. My father, for his unwavering faith in me. My mother, for her natural sense of drama. All of my acting coaches, voice teachers and genius directors from high school through Broadway who have taught me so much. My mentor, Mark Jolin at Howard University. The Haitian people for their creative spirits. Most currently, my acting coach Rosalyn Coleman and my voice teacher David Sisco. It goes to show you never stop learning, just when I thought I couldn’t go any farther, these two geniuses of the craft came into my life. And I am grateful!
A.I. Haiti has produced impeccable songstresses who went on to become great actresses the whole humanity has claimed for its own. Toto Bissainthe, Martha Jean-Claude, Ti-Corn to name a few. Most of them have long passed on, and they left a legacy, a heritage, if you will, that makes all of us feel so proud and empowered to speak about. Do you see yourself being part of this fulfilling legacy? If yes, how?
A.F. Yes, I do. I think each of us has been given the same opportunity, and that is to fulfill our purpose. I have been blessed with people who have inspired me to pursue my passions, tell my story and continue to create. As long as I continue to be true to who I am, then I will be contributing in a way that only I can. Hopefully that will inspire others to do the same.
A.I. As we have come to the conclusion of our conversation, is there a current project or a TV series you’d like to share with the readers?
A.F. As I mentioned I am working on a play with music with my collaborator, David Sisco. One of the main characters in the play was a Haitian Broadway actress and one of the other characters is myself. Our goal is to workshop it in the fall of 2014. The other thing I’ve got in the can is a situation dramedy that takes place in Provincetown, MA. It’s an ensemble piece that is being shopped around for distribution. Hopefully, it will have legs and you’ll be able to view it in your homes soon.
A.I. Thank you, Alexandra. It’s been a pleasure to speak with you.
A.F. Thank you, I am truly grateful for your interest in my work. You can sign up for updates on my websitewww.alexandrafoucard.com
Note: Also, you can visit Ms. Foucard’s Facebook Fan Page: www.facebook.com/alexandrafoucard Like it and Follow it. More pictures of Alexandra can be found in our Facebook Fan Page:www.facebook.com/csmsmagazine
Premier Source of Online FILM and MUSIC video ENTERTAINMENT, new talent DISCOVERY and BRANDING
In FCE profile interviews, FCE guests are more personal than ever. This week, we present to you Alexandra Foucard, one of New York’s best talents, who is breaking boundaries and gracing both film and theater sets with her performances. In her own very original words, uncut and as direct as ever, Alexandra says it as it is. That’s why we are FatalCut Entertainment. Saying it as it is…
A renaissance actor for the 21st century, Alexandra Foucard is setting her own boundaries. The New York based actor, born in Haiti, considers herself to be amalgamation of cultures and ethnicities with a heaping dollop of spirituality. Alexandra believes artists not only have an obligation to tell human stories, but a responsibility to extend beyond what’s comfortable to reach those voices yet to be heard.
Alexandra, a Broadway actress is spreading her wings by venturing into film and episodics. She wrapped OFFSEASON, a series dramedy set in Cape Cod, Massachusetts now in post-production. Her character, a general contractor/yoga instructor is suspected of murder. Alexandra’s also slated to begin filming an independent feature by Leon Raymond Mitchell, Drinking From Satan’s Cup, later this summer. “Playing a French high crime ring leader in Paris, France is the kind of role I love.” Ms. Foucard beaming as she refers to Satan’s’ Cup, “I’m thankful for the opportunities which take me out of the box.”
She reveals connection to her Spiritual Source is a vital part of her everyday life. Using Forrest Yoga to keep her grounded and authentic is also one of the ways she’s found to stay focused in bustling New York City. “One of my favorite spiritual teacher says, ‘Do what you love and love what you do’, I intend to live by those words every day.”
I am involved with a LGBTQIA youth crisis center called “The Church” in New York City. Being a volunteer and raising awareness in our community regarding teenage homelessness has awakened my spirit. The young people who visit the center range in age from 13 to 21. The Church may have 90 – 100 kids show up on any given night. 40% of those kids are homeless. The experience of watching these young people be thankful for a hot meal and a safe place to be for a few hours, something everyone should be entitled to, has made me realize how much I have to be grateful for.
A few years ago I became really tired of being sick and tired. That was the day I began the journey of accepting myself for who I am. No longer conforming to what people’s ideologies or opinions of how my life should be has freed me to connect with my creativity. I had this epiphany, I don’t fit into a box! The truth is none of us do, and as soon as I accepted this the proverbial fog lifted. Now I am committed to do what I love and am open to where that leads me and to those who I meet along my journey.
I’m very excited to be one of the singers for “Binders Full of Women’s Songs” July 26th at 54 Below in New York City. I am also collaborating with an amazing writer and composer, David Sisco. We’re creating a play with music incorporating an exceptional artist, mother, and Broadway legend as one of the characters. We will be workshopping this project next year.
Award-winning thespian Alexandra Foucard is what some might call a quad threat. You read correctly. She is a singer, a theater and film actress, and a writer—having written two short films.
Nathan Butera, who has directed Foucard on the TV show “OFFSEASON” especially appreciates her dual experience on the stage and on film. “That’s a rare thing to find these days. As many of the actors on my production are stage-trained and have limited film and TV experience, Alexandra has a language and presence she uses to help some of the other actors who are less experienced in film and TV translate their stage techniques to the screen.”
Foucard played Fantine in a production of Victor Hugo’s classicLes Miserables. In embodying the character, Foucard captured the vulnerability of the prostitute in 19th Century France, who is lax in her morals but who is abundant in motherly love and selflessness.
Its her dedication to capturing the essence of characters like Fantine that has earned her the admiration of directors like Butera. “She understands the power of a subtle gesture or a simple look of the eyes and has the confidence and timing to know when to use them in place of bigger, more affected movements and speech,” he says. “But make no mistake, when it’s appropriate, Alex will ‘let ‘er rip’ with a cut-you-to-the-bone performance that’ll make the hairs on your neck stand up an pay attention.”
Based in Los Angeles, Foucard was honored with a NAACP Award for Outstanding Lead Actress in a Play, for the role of Adelaide in the musical “Guys and Dolls” and was nominated for the prestigious Helen Hayes Award for her turn as Vy in Sheldon Epps’ “Play On”. She played Beneatha in an off-Broadway production of Lorraine Hansberry’s A Raisin in the Sun. She holds a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree from Howard University.
Q & A
Tell us about yourself.
I was born in Haiti. As in most Haitian families, we are on big melting pot. One of my grandmothers was Domincan and Spaniard, one grandfather was French, and my other set of grandparents were Haitian and Caribe. This has played a great role in shaping who I am. I have a great love of Haitian art and storytelling–it’s in my DNA. It’s opened my creative mind to embrace all art forms throughout the world.
So you were born in Haiti. At which point did you leave?
Yes, I was born in Gonaives and we lived in Petion-Ville. However, political reasons forced my parents to leave Haiti when I was four. We first moved to Chevy Chase, Maryland but my maman couldn’t handle the cold, so we moved to Miami, Florida where I grew up.
Have you always been in love with acting?
Yes! My parents told me when I’d go to the movies with them in Haiti, I would make them sit and I’d reenact the entire movie when we got home. I’ve been interested in fashion design, interior design, advertising, even the law. But I adore acting and singing.
You played Fantine, in Victor Hugo’s Les Miserables. How was that experience?
It was a dream come true, I remember seeing Debbie Gibson singing “On My Own” on some morning talk show, and I thought,” I want to do that…I want to be in that show!” When I auditioned for Les Miserable I was was living in Miami. I went to a general call at the Theater of Performing Arts, [and] 386 people showed up and two of us were cast. I was with the Les Miz touring company for six weeks and then joined the Broadway Company. When you’re doing 8 shows a week you spend a lot of time together. We all had a great love and respect for the show, it was a great experience for me. The cast was and still is part of my theater family. In fact, those of us who are in New York went to see Les Miserables—the film—together in January, some of a crew also came along. We had a blast! One time, I remember being on stage singing my solo and realizing at that moment “Oh my God! I am actually on a Broadway stage singing! My dream is now my reality”, I started to cry.
Now, you’ve done theater, television and film. In which setting do you feel most comfortable?
I am comfortable with all three. However, if I had to choose, I would say the theater. It’s my foundation. There’s something about being on a stage that make me feel grounded. Maybe it’s the familiarity.
Your performance in “Guys and Dolls” earned you a NAACP Award. How did you feel when your name was announced?
It’s pretty funny because I didn’t know I had been nominated. A friend of mine called me to congratulate me on the nomination, I totally thought he was kidding. I was working in New York and was unable to fly to L.A. for the NAACP Awards. The night of the awards during the show I got a call from Maurice Hines, who played Nathan Detroit to my Adelaide and he told me I won. I was in my dressing room totally freaking out!
How much asowosi and vèvenn did your parents drink when you told them you were going to pursue acting?
That’s really funny…I haven’t heard that in a long time. My parents were cool with me taking voice lessons, acting and dance lessons — My mother even drove me to all my activities. But, when I announced that I was going to get my BFA in Musical Theater my mother just didn’t get it. She told me, “No respectable Haitian woman acted as a profession. It ‘s considered one step up from a prostitute.” Pitit mwen te choke, men mwen pa t kite sa estope m. I told her: “Maman, I’m sorry you feel that way, but this is my passion.” She had a change of heart after I booked Les Miserables!
Are Hollywood people are ruthless as they’re portrayed?
I think people are the same everywhere, it depends on what’s going on inside of them, I mean how they feel about themselves. This will indicate how they choose to react to certain situations.
Do you have a dream role?
One written for me! [Laughter] I think that all actors would like someone to write something just for them. Although if I had to be more specific, I would like to star in a French film where I would play la fanm fatal. The idea of doing an entire film in French or Creole is exciting because it provides several challenges — not letting the words get in the way for one. I mean, I’ve only acted in English!
When was the last time you went to Haiti?
It’s been too long! I was back in 1998. I would like to go back this year, I think Haiti has the most amazing people and it’s a beautiful country.
If you were graduating high school right now, and knowing all you know now, would you still get a degree in acting?
Hmmm, interesting question. Honestly, I’m torn — on one hand there’s much to be said about having a BFA, I did get the conservatory experience, which was a great way to learn my craft. Yet, I think learning marketing and business is such an advantage because at least 90% of the industry is about those two things. But the thought of those majors bore me. Although, If I had majored in either I could have minored in Acting and Musical Theater. Frankly, I did learn a lot in college, but I don’t think it could have prepared me for all I’ve encountered professionally. Sometimes experience is the best teacher, provided you learn from it.
Do you think it’s essential to keep Haitian culture and customs alive?
Absolutely! We have such an inspiring history which has bled into our culture and customs, it makes us unique. We’ve also had a great influence throughout other cultures as well through our music and art.
You’ve studied acting with David Sisco, Roz Coleman, Bruce Kolb, and Allan Louis, among others. What have you learned about your craft through these distinguished teachers?
Very loaded question! They are all amazing acting and vocal coaches. They taught me to improve my technique and hone my craft as an artist. But, what I’ve taken from all my experience with them is how to make all the technique and coaching my own; in other words make it organic, because when you’re on stage or in front of the camera it’s just you. I’ve also learned an artist never stops growing, so I continue to coach with both my voice and acting coach.
When you bounce from role to role, how do you manage to create a new character from scratch?
Well, I create a biography for each character: where I grew up, my likes and dislikes, profession, etc., in other words I get as detailed as I possibly can for each character down to my zodiac sign. This foundation makes it possible for me to be my character.
Is there a challenge in being yourself again, after you’re done playing a role?
Yes, yes, yes! When I played Adelaide I would catch myself slipping into a Bronx accent while my voice became high pitched on certain words during conversations…crazy!
What can you tell us about “OFFSEASON”?
“OFFSEASON”, well, I spend a lot of time in Provincetown, Massachusetts on Cape Cod. It’s a beautiful place with a huge artist and LGBT community. Some local writers, actors and a cinematographer got together and decided to create a miniseries. It is a quirky little town, people work hard during “the Season”, which is the summer, usually having two or more jobs. Then during the off-season, the winter, the town is deserted except for the townies and almost every business closes its doors. The show is based on what happens in Provincetown when the tourists go home. I’m Maya Wholly, a general contractor and yoga instructor who manages to get myself into a bit of trouble.
What are you working on currently?
I’m currently working on “OFFSEASON”, we’re shooting five more episodes. I’m slated to do a science-fiction short this month, entitled Memorama, by Peter Normandia. I’m a president of major bank who doesn’t take no for an answer. Also in July, I’ll be working on a feature written and directed by Leon Raymond Mitchell entitled, Drinking From Satan’s Cup, I’m a French business woman with a twist.
You sing too.
I’ve been singing my whole life. One day, I was about seven, I was singing in the hallway of our house in Miami and my papi said to me, “San, se radyo an kap jwe ?” Well that did it for me, I thought, “I can sing because my papi thought it was the radio.” I’ve been taking lessons since I was eleven. My stage work has consisted mostly of musicals, which is great. I’d love to do a television show or film where my character had to sing.
If you could talk to a room full of new graduates, who’ve just earned their BFAs from Howard University, actually from any university, what would you say to them about the road ahead?
Hmmm, you ask some provocative questions. [Laughter] The first thing I would say is know who you are, accept and love yourself, know your talent and self-worth, be kind to yourself and trust yourself. When you leave the comforts of your universities where you’ve been incubating for the past four years you may find that people appear unimpressed or maybe even dismissive of your talent. But, if you hold on to all of these things I’ve mentioned, find good coaches, continue to hone your craft and maintain a clear vision of where you want to go, you will without a doubt get there.
I will be shooting The Debut in June. I will be playing an upper class, Harvard graduate who discovers her husband is cheating on her with the nanny…. OH LAWD!!!!
OFFSEASON is a offbeat dark comedy about the colorful characters of Provincetown, Massachusetts; the residents of this quirky little town at the tip of Cape Cod explores what really happens during the off season. Think Twin Peaks meets the Office.
Alexandra plays Maya Wholey, whose family owns an established art gallery in town which she manages and a yoga instructor on the side. Maya uses mediation to get over her phobia of Portuguese sausages, kleptomania and her obsession for Kate Clinton under wraps.
The show begin shooting in January of 2012. Watch this space for updates!