INTERVIEW WITH ACTRESS ALICE BIER ZANDEN

  • How did you get involved in acting?

I grew up in a family of film and theatre workers, so it has always been around me. But having your passions so close doesn’t necessarily makes it easier, since you want to liberate your self from your family. I have tried many other fields like drawing, illustration, scenography but I keep on returning to theatre and film.

  • How different is it to act in a movie and to act in a theater play? And which one do you prefer?

Both is great. I love the working process of theatre. The rehearsals and the ensemble feeling, working together in a group for a longer period of time. I love in theatre that you can get into depth with the role as you replay it over and over every night. I think that repetition is a great practice, because it forces you to rediscover the character, to continue finding nuances and tones. But I also love filming as it is quicker, more time pressured, it feels like everything is at stake the moment they call “Action”. It can be exhilarating because you invest yourself completely in those few moments of shooting.

  • What are your weak points when it comes to acting? How do you try to improve them?

I still have many, as I am young and fairly unexperienced. I sometimes feel a shyness and barriers when it comes to dramatic scenes.

  • What are your strong points as an actor?

I think that I am good at being present and listening to others in the scene. Letting go to that strange state of presence, where you are both letting go and in control.

  • What have you learned from the directors that you have worked with throughout your career?

They have all been a big inspiration in different ways. I have learned that, whatever you do, you need to find a way to trust the director and the material. Because working on a role, you alternate between complete trust and doubt. It is a process of listening to your director, who is there to guide you, but also finding the character inside yourself. So both being true to the vision of the film and being true to your own sense of the character.

  • What makes a good scene partner?

Somebody who is open, listening and in contact with you. Somebody who invests one self and is willing to take risks, so you can feel free to do the same.

  • What are some of the difficulties of the acting business?

I guess that the difficulties of acting, is that you are dependent on being asked and invited. Whereas the director or producer can create the idea and take action. The dependence on luck, timing, your reputation and such elusive factors can create a state of passivity, which I think is a struggle in the acting business.

  • What’s challenging about bringing a script to life?

I think that is is always a much bigger work, than what you’d assume just skimming a script. The lines are expressions of the characters desires and motivations, so to make the dialogue come alive, you have to know your character, which is a process. You have to find the logics of that characters phycology, and then the lines must be a natural expression of that.

  • What do you do when you’re not doing theatre/film?

I study Art History at the University of Copenhagen and work on different art projects which involves painting and writing. And the rest of the time I hang out with my two-year old daughter and my boyfriend.

  • If someone is going to make your life into a movie, who would play you?

If I love to have young Bibi Andersson if that was possible, she is such a wonderful actress, she is light and effortless but still with a great depth. But that’s probably more me dreaming of being her, than having her portray me haha.