Alumnus Turteltaub interviewed, speaks to theater students

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Jon Turteltaub answers questions from seniors Allie Finer and Yassi Noubahar (left), and junior Emily Rishwain (right).

Lucas Harward, staff writer

Jackson Prince, co-editor-in-chief

Beverly’s Drama Dept. is beginning a series of “Tuesday Theater Talks,” in which alumni currently involved in show business return each Tuesday and are interviewed by students in the Salter Theater. The interviewee on Oct. 28 was director Jon Turteltaub, who has directed movies such as “Cool Runnings”, “Phenomenon” and the “National Treasure” series.

Theater director Dr. Brad Vincent explained the motivation behind having these people come and speak to the students.

“There’s only one BHHS. And our alumni in the industry have an intimate knowledge of both the school and the community and what it’s like to grow up here, in addition to having a vast knowledge of the industry,” Vincent said. “So, we’re wanting to remind the students that the alumni are still a part of the BHHS community and show that their experiences at BHHS are still important to their careers and their lives.”

Turteltaub had many bits of wisdom to share with the students about everything from acting to directing to general life lessons.

“Directing is like being asked, ‘Do I look fat in this dress?’ 20 times a day. You have to figure out how to change the dress and make that person feel gorgeous,” Turteltaub said.

Senior Tim Lee, a member of the Theater Arts Workshop, is excited about the opportunity to hear people speak who are thriving in his dream career path.

“I think its amazing because, as a senior who is preparing to enter this field, there is nothing better than hearing the stories from people who were successful and the alumni of  BHHS. I can’t wait until more people come in and share their experiences with us and answer all of the questions we couldn’t have [found] online,” Lee said.

Turteltaub described his fond memories of the Beverly theater department, such as acting alongside classmate Nicolas Cage, and the challenges he faced, which included learning lines and dealing with teenage drama.

Overall, Turteltaub left a positive mark on the students and made known the appreciation he has for the theater department.

“I come back here because I loved [the department],” Turteltaub said. “I’m back to tell you that I still give a damn about the Beverly Hills High School Drama Department.”

 

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