Saturday, November 27, 2010

The Face Behind the West Coast Blogs

When you talk of a quirky, mystical, romantic, collected, eccentric “Shoujo” girl, creative… these are some of the definitions that describes the face behind the West Coast Blog: Xio… and she is still searching for a word to describe herself. Born from Cuban, French, African hardworking entrepreneurs, Xiomara Ortiz came from a family of seven children, her being the youngest. She grew up on Sommerset Street in Philadelphia, PA. Different sections of her life and family has a history in itself. We will start with her main heart. The reason she came to live in L.A.

So what got Xio into Acting? Well, she is quirky in the sense that she use to believe people lived inside of the TV when she watched Romancing the Stone along with Halloween (yes, Michael Myers… her parents allowed her to watch that as a kid!). At three, she tried to join the people she saw in the box, but could have gotten electrocuted if her mother did not shout at her to not to try to bang her head on the television set. At times off school, she would play with Miss Piggy and Kermit the Frog, being different people in a movie on their own… not to mention she would talk to herself in the mirror almost her whole life. It wasn’t until her sister told her about acting that she realized she could actually make a living playing pretend. It was set, she wants Acting for the rest of her life. Tom Hanks, Johnny Depp, Kate Winslet, Amanda Seyfried, Patrick Stewart, Ian McKellen, Emma Thompson, Alfred Molina, Jonathan Ryce Meyers, Will Smith, and Paul Bettany are the few that inspires her, and whom she desires to work with in her lifetime.

She is mystical in the sense that her world was open to different mediums of art. Her parents had her enrolled in ballet and piano as a kid. Her sisters encouraged her to be cultured and read Shakespeare, Bronte, Austen, and watch some classics with Gene Kelly, James Cagney, Jimmy Stewart, Bette Davis, and the girl got more inspired to learn about her career. Still a fan of Beverly Hills 90210 and Save by the Bell, she never forgot her brush up on the classics. Xio always wanted to be involved in acting, but considering that elementary and middle school did not offer drama, she took advantage of it once she came to high school and studied her craft. In addition to acting, she got involved in modern dance and has an eye for painting and drawing. She continued to study in college, but an opportunity to be in NY caused her to put school on hold, and ended up doing background for her first film in “The Stepford Wives” (with Nicole Kidman). From then on, opportunities flowed from Community Theater and indie films and TV, like “The Passage” which premiered in both NY Film and Video Festival in NY and LA (won best mystery). She did a supporting role in a Re-enactment on Dr. G. Medical Examiner (episode “The Things Men Do” as Officer Aurelia Hernandez). She started building her resume from featured roles to leading ones, and took classes, studying under Julie Gagne at Valencia Community College, Yvonne Suhor at Art Sake, Lauren O’Quinn, Russ Blackwell, Mark Mullen at The Actors’ School, and Ken Eulo at the Courtyard Playhouse. Her drive got her to move to California, and her opportunities multiplied. She has yet reached two years in Los Angeles, and has been involved in almost 30 projects, including being featured on MTV as a wall flower for “That Girl” (directed by Millicent Shelton), cast in the short film “Unveiled” (directed by Andre Holzendorf) as Zoe, which stars leading veteran actors Frank Ashmore (Martin in Original “V” series) and Ron Hajak  (Richard Moore in “Chips”), and recently cast as a lead in Agua Sangre (her first Spanish film directed by Scott Stubbe). Acting sparked a new inner child as being a writer as well as a singer and face painter.

Xio is collected when it came to hardships in her life. No matter whom one prays to, being spiritually grounded is what keeps her reminded to keep her head up. For her, praying to Jesus is what kept her going when things got rough, and rolled with the punches when she would be tested. In order to grow, she had to fall and learn how to get back up again.

She is an eccentric “Shoujo” girl in the sense that she loves to live in the world of Sailor Moon, Kingdom Hearts, and Vampire Knights… just to name a few of Japanese anime. Her boyfriend introduced the art to her years ago, and she became a huge fan of Naoko Takeuchi, Tetsuya Nomura, Matsuri Hino, Hayao Miyazaki, and the late great Satoshi Kon. One reason why we are mentioning these anime, it got her a new desire to do voice over for Japanese anime. In addition to watching anime, writing fan fictions of Sailor Moon, and being involved in the community, she co-hosted a podcast called “KEYCAST”, based on the video games Kingdom Hearts, with her partner and boyfriend, Peter Evan Geoghegan, as the main host. The podcast successfully premiered worldwide online for a year. Due to financial hardship in this economy and tough decisions that had to be made, it had to put it on hold.

Creative is one word she makes sure to live by each day, even if she has other obligations to attend to, she has to be creative, do a little something each day as she moves towards her goal to be a full time working actor. It’s been tricky with her busy schedule, but she wants to finish the project she started a while back with Crossroads Productions (Executive Producer Valensky Sylvain) a documentary on her father’s life (Amelio Ortiz Silot Terrero) as a former political prisoner. This is a piece of other stories they plan to build called “Above and Beyond”. Annie Rodriguez is mentoring the project. Brent Solomon is the DP of the documentary and plans to edit it.

What’s next for Xio? She’s keeping a lid on it until she has “the cat in the bag”. In the meantime, Xio keeps herself busy auditioning, assisting with the live streaming events at the Screen Actors Guild Foundation. She knows this upcoming year to be wonderful. As for those who desires to move forward in life with their goals and dreams, whatever it may be, she will only advice to push for it, jump in the air and go for it. If you are one of those people that need an extra guidance to do that push, whatever you believe in, she recommends keeping yourself spiritually and mentally grounded. It will move you quicker in life. She also suggests checking out “The Secret” by Rhonda Byrne, and “The Artist’s Way” by Julia Cameron. Dreams are beautiful, stunningly beautiful. It doesn’t hurt to try it out, right? J

“Your Choice is Yours, and Yours Only, for there is Only One Life”

                                                                 (Actor, writer, singer, Shoujo onnanoko)

IMDB credited. 

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