"Hollywood Horror Icon" Tony Todd Coming to New England For A Special Pre-Halloween Workshop At JRP & Open Call

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One of the top Hollywood working actors with credits in "Candyman", "Platoon", "The Rock", "Final Destination" franchise, "Transformer: Revenge of the Fallen" and more, Tony Todd is set to share his invaluable experience in show business with the young and aspiring actors from New England.

On October 21, Tony Todd (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tony_Todd), the "Hollywood Horror Icon" will come to JRP New England (http://jrpnewengland.com/) and Open Call Model & Talent (http://www.opencallmodelandtalent.com/) to deliver a special industry workshop to the students and alumni of JRP. Perhaps best known for his chilling performance in the classical horror franchise "Candyman", the charismatic 6' 5" actor Tony Todd has consistently turned in compelling performances since his debut in the fantasy film Sleepwalk (1986). And his extensive acting credits went on and on since then: he portrayed William Bludworth in Final Destination franchise, voiced "The Fallen" in Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen, and "Dreadwing" in Transformers: Prime. He was also in film classics as "The Rock" (1996), "The Crow" (1994), "Lean on Me" (1989), "Bird" (1988), "Night of the Living Dead" (1990), "The Man from Earth" (2007), "Sushi Girl" (2012), the multiple Academy Award winning Oliver Stone film "Platoon" (1986) and "Le Secret" (2000), which was nominated and screened at the Cannes Film Festival.

Todd is one of a few earliest casts in the original Star Trek franchise: he portrayed Worf's brother Kurn in four episodes of Star Trek: The Next Generation and Star Trek: Deep Space Nine and the video game Star Trek: The Next Generation - Klingon Honor Guard. He also portrayed different characters in episodes of Deep Space Nine and Star Trek: Voyager. He was one of several actors considered for the role of Benjamin Sisko and provided the voice of "Korban" for the video game Star Trek: Elite Force II.

Todd’s versatility has been exemplified by his prominent guest starring roles in numerous critically-acclaimed television series and video games, including "Call of Duty: Black Ops II" (2012), "Boston Public" (2000), "For the People" (2002), "CSI: Miami" (2002) and "The District" (2000), as well as "NYPD Blue" (1993), "Smallville" (2001), "Law & Order" (1990), "Crossing Jordan" (2001), "Homicide: Life on the Street" (1993) and "The X-Files" (1993).

Todd's considerable theater credits include the world premiere of award-winning playwright August Wilson's "King Hedley II", where he originated the title role in Pittsburgh, Seattle and Boston. Variety commented: "Todd's King Hedley dominates the stage. A sour-faced mix of rage and resolve, anger and vulnerability. Todd's Hedley was a memorable tour-de-force even on opening." He also received a coveted Helen Hayes nomination for his performance in Athol Fugard's "The Captain's Tiger" at La Jolla, the Manhattan Theatre Club and the Kennedy Center. Other theatre credits include "Les Blancs", "Playboy of the West Indies", "Othello", "Zooman and the Sign", award-winning playwright Keith Glover's "Dark Paradise", "Aida" (on Broadway), and "Levee James" for the prestigious Eugene O'Neill Playwrights Conference and The New Dramatist Guild.

Born in Washington, D.C., Todd spent two years on a scholarship at the University of Connecticut, which, in turn, led to a scholarship from the renowned Eugene O'Neill National Theatre Institute. It proved to be the foundation for intense stints at the Hartman Conservatory in Stamford, Connecticut and the Trinity Square Repertory Theatre Conservatory in Providence, Rhode Island.

With his critical training and learning years spent in New England, Todd is always considering himself an "East Coaster" who sincerely appreciates the diversity and depth of the New England culture. He is an acclaimed advocate of theater education as well – back to the college years he had appeared in dozens of classical and experimental plays, yet still managed to find time to teach playwriting to high school students in the Hartford public school system. Today he keeps entertainment education as one of his missions and makes appearances in a variety of educational workshops to keep inspiring the young people with dreams and passions for the industry.

"I am fortunate enough to stay in the business as long as almost my lifetime, I’ve seen a lot and experienced a lot, and I’m humbled to be given many titles and credits – I feel obligated to give back and if there is one thing that I can give back for most, it is education - to pass down those lifetime experiences and knowledge, and to inspire people with courage, tenacity and wisdom", said the 59 years’ old actor, "I am very happy to work with JRP New England to deliver a workshop to their students. JRP is a widely recognized training school in performing arts; I respect their founder Mr. John Robert Powers for his great passion to help the aspiring and emerging actors, and that’s what I am here for".

The workshop is set for two hours from 4-6 p.m. on October 21, just one week before the Halloween. During the workshop, Todd will share his bio and personal stories with the students: how he started, what was the first job he landed and how he made it, training he received, difficulties and challenges he encountered and many more. He will also give a sneak peek of the industry that is not accessible elsewhere to a novice: how Hollywood works, important things to be aware of, audition tips, networking tips, contract tips, as well as industry trends.

"We are thrilled at the opportunity - having a veteran actor like Tony Todd to conduct a workshop at our school is something really special", stated Brett Notkin, president of JRP New England, "at JRP we are committed to providing professional training and personal development for individuals aspiring to explore a career in film, television and theater world, and we keep pushing the envelope to provide better industry resources and connections for our students. As a matter of fact, we are the only company in New England area that regularly brings in talent agents and managers from Los Angeles and New York to scout our talent and models. And now we are proud to have Tony joining us - It definitely adds more credit to our already acclaimed industry services".

About JRP New England:
JRP New England is a Boston based performing arts academy that provides professional training and personal development for persons aspiring to explore or enter a career in film, television, theatre, print or runway modeling. The company is state licensed as a private occupational school and has been a fixture in the Boston community for over 40 years with an A+ rating through the Better Business Bureau.

JRP New England’s school program is structured and designed to provide progressive development in acting, voice, movement, modeling and working for the camera. The staff is composed of working professionals and master level teachers. A unique and intensive focus exists on the audition experience, as students are offered frequent and regular opportunities to perform in the presence of casting directors and agents from major industry markets like Los Angeles and New York.

Integral to the education process at JRP New England is an emphasis on growing the character, maturity and integrity needed for the demands of a career in the performing arts.
For more information, please check http://jrpnewengland.com/.

About Open Call Model & Talent:
Open Call Model & Talent is a Boston based fully licensed Talent & Modeling agency representing actors and models throughout the New England area. It is affiliated with JRP New England and is managed by a team of knowledgeable specialists experienced in the industry and specializing in the search, screening, and placement of talent & models for local, national and international companies.

Open Call Model & Talent represents clients in most areas of the entertainment industry including motion pictures, television, animation, theater, radio, TV commercials, voice overs, high fashion and print modeling. Its On-Camera division has provided talent to many high-profile jobs and represents some of the newest and most talented faces in New England.

Its High Fashion and Print Division has placed clients in magazines, advertisements, designer’s collections and runway shows. It also has the largest model and talent network spanning from New York to Los Angeles and across the world, providing talent with opportunities to work with some of the best agencies and managers in the world.

For more information, please check http://www.opencallmodelandtalent.com/.

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Lynn Zhou
JRP New England
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