Passion + talent continues to flourish from actress Kristin Ariza as she shares her flair with the world! Hailing from Orlando, Florida, she captivated audiences in memorable roles including American Horror Story, NCIS: Los Angeles, Scorpion, Castle, Bones, Criminal Minds and Grey’s Anatomy; in addition to recurring roles on Parks and Recreation and Lie to Me. Fans will also recognize her from her role in HBO’s Emmy-nominated movie Confirmation, the Anita Hill v. Clarence Thomas story.
Drawn to acting at a young age, she earned her BA in Theatre from Florida State University and went on to the acclaimed Alliance Theatre in Atlanta, Georgia before moving to New York and eventually Los Angeles.
You can catch her sizzling performance in the gritty world that is STARTUP, the newest original scripted drama series from Sony’s streaming network Crackle!
Let’s get to know Kristen a little better…
As an actress you’ve played powerful roles such as ‘Judy Smith’ in Confirmation and currently ‘Tamara Dacey’ in the new drama ‘STARTUP’, what motivated you to step into the world of acting?
KRISTEN: Acting actually found me. However when I discovered the joy I had in creating characters that I was moved by and that also moved people, I was hooked.
What has been your favorite role to bring to life and how do you connect with each character?
KRISTEN: That’s a tough one…I’ve enjoyed playing so many varied roles. One of my favorites belongs to the stage. The role was ‘Kate’ in the play, GOOD PEOPLE by David Lindsay-Abaire. I loved it because it’s about not good people, but real people…flawed people. We are all a product of our circumstances and was so happy to explore this concept. Also, I absolutely love the theatre.
Sometimes fear can get the best of us, what advice would you give girls who want to follow their dreams + passions?
KRISTEN: Fear isn’t necessarily a bad thing. It’s in us for a reason. It’s our internal gauge to help us make the right decisions and keep us honest. To those who are interested in pursuing a less than
conventional path- whatever it may be, I say: train, study, observe. Become a student of whatever it is you are wanting to do. That is how you lessen your fears and get closer to your dreams.
We tend to pull characteristics from others in our lives or from people we admire, who inspires you and why?
KRISTEN: I’m tremendously inspired by my family. Though we don’t live in the same state, we are very close. They inspire daily. As an artist, even without realizing it, you pick up on things. You become
a parrot of behaviors and isms.
You’re busy building your fab acting career and at times it can get to be a bit overwhelming, how do you regroup and motivate yourself when you’re feeling a little defeated?
KRISTEN: From a young age, I’ve been involved in sports- basketball, track, cross-country. Now, I hike, I run. I’ve done several marathons. Exercise is a great motivator for me. It’s my way of
escape and my way to regroup. Let’s face it, anything you’re trying to pursue full-time isn’t going to always be a bed of roses. I find it helpful to have something reliable and positive that you KNOW, just
by the nature of you doing it, will make you feel better. For me, that’s lacing up my sneaks and hitting the pavement.
We are all about empowerment, What does EMPOWERMENT mean to you?
KRISTEN: It means making someone (including yourself) feel more confident. So, to me, it means embracing your-SELF. Embracing knowledge. Embracing all of the interesting, quirky, unique things
Time for the Faves! Celeb Crush? Artist? Food? Movie?
KRISTEN: Celeb crush?? I might have one for every letter of the Alphabet! Artist? A lot of ‘girl power’ on my radio right now. Listening to Andra Day, Lissie, Marian Hill, Beyonce Food? I will
crumble over some good chips and salsa Movie? Recently I really enjoyed ‘Hell or High Water’ but truly, there is so much great TV out right now. I could binge watch for weeks!
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