In a lot of ways, Lindsay Solmer’s move to Victoria is what got her into theatre and film.
The Kelowna-born actress grew up heavily involved in dance, but despite the opportunity to hone her craft at the Royal Winnipeg Ballet, she yearned for a different type of performance art.
“Moving to Victoria kind of made me realize I wanted a change,” said Solmer, 20. “I kind of decided that dancing wasn’t enough and I wanted to get more into acting.”
She started taking acting lessons at Victoria’s Screen Actors Studio and starred in St. Michael’s University School’s production of the Broadway musical Guys and Dolls.
She’d officially been bitten by the acting bug. Solmer moved to New York and made the cut at the American Academy of Dramatic Arts, a prestigious school that accepts only about 220 students per year.
It’s the alma mater of such Hollywood greats as Adrien Brody, Anne Hathaway, Danny DeVito, Kirk Douglas and Paul Rudd.
“You could’ve gotten kicked out anytime if they didn’t think you were right for it,” she said with a laugh. “It was a lot, but I really enjoyed it.”
After graduating from the conservatory’s two-year program, Solmer got a working visa to get her first taste of the acting industry, which led her to a new commercial for Videoshop, a new video editing app for iPhone, Android and Windows. The commercial showcases the app’s abilities while telling a sweet story about a young couple, played by Solmer and her co-star.
“That was my first really big gig,” she said, noting she got picked to audition through a casting site. “I did a lot of student films, but that was my first commercial.”
The film industry is known to have stiff competition, and Solmer said reading for a part in a 30-second commercial is no different.
“They looked at my resumé and they liked what they saw, so they brought me in for an audition,” she said. “I got a call back and met them again and auditioned with another guy against another couple. A few days later, they called me and I got the job.”
The commercial – which was edited using the app and is in rotation on Hulu – was filmed in San Francisco and New York. Solmer said it was a thrill being a part of the commercial’s scenes, even if they were only a few seconds each, at most.
“In the commercial, they have me and the other guy doing tourist activities and videotaping it,” she said. “We just got to do fun activities around San Francisco and New York. It was a great experience.”
While her sights are ultimately set on Hollywood, Solmer is getting ready to go back to New York in September to finish her degree at Manhattan’s Hunter College. Then she intends to head to Los Angeles to really break into the industry,
“I’m really interested in TV, films, the movie industry,” she said. “I’ll be auditioning there, making connections – I’ve made quite a few connections in New York, so I want to get out to the west coast and see what I can do.”