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From Ashes to Pheonix: Exclusive Interview with Tanya Bevan

Photo Credit: Ian Brown
Photo Credit: Ian Brown

Tanya Bevan was born in Windsor, Canada, and started appearing in front of a camera as a toddler, when she was used in promotional materials for a daycare center. She attended high school at the Walkerville Centre for the Creative Arts in Windsor, Ontario and graduated with academic honors and as a ‘triple threat’ performer. She continued her education at George Brown College, Toronto Ontario. Her most memorable stage performance was as Bombalurina in the musical CATS. In addition to CATS, she has appeared in A Chorus Line, Godspell, Suessical, Oklahoma, Les Miserables, Tommy, Oliver and Annie.

She spent a year dancing with the Toronto Argonauts ‘Dance Pack’ and the Toronto Marlies, and while with the Marlies, sang the National Anthem several times. She lived and worked in Morocco for a time dancing professionally.

Tanya’s first professional feature film was Toronto’s The Rocker, in which she played Prom Queen Jennifer, and acted alongside Riann Wilson, Christina Applegate and Emma Stone. She has appeared in Instant Star with Alexz Johnson and Laura Vandervoort, Family Biz and Baxter. Most recently Tanya can be seen in the horror film The Scarehouse as Carla Coyle, as Fara/Stacee in SyFy’s Beyond the Deep, both filmed in her native Windsor, and in the upcoming film Ashes as Sam.

She’s been in two music videos, Snoop Lion’s “La La La” and Colfax, “Lawless.”

The lovely Tanya is 5’2 with long brown hair and green eyes. On Tanya’s Linked In page she describes herself as a “full time story-teller and part-time ninja.”

Tanya graciously took a few moments out of her busy day to answer a few questions for Talk Nerdy With Us:

What can you tell us about your character, Sam, in Ashes? How does she fit into the relationship between Abby and Liam?

Sam is the Momma bear, she is smart and knows how to make you feel better, she’s tough and doesn’t take sh*t from anyone, she has a big heart, and will be over in a second if you need her there and will do anything for her friends. She is the friend everyone goes to for advice, comfort and hugs. Abby and Sam are friends from camp and stayed that way ever since. 9th grade came along and Liam and Abby started dating, I again being momma bear, I am the one Abby/Liam come to whenever they have a fight or argument or need ideas for romantic dates and gifts 😉 We have all been a pretty tight group since 9th grade, Best Friends one may say.

What drew you to the movie, and to your character, Sam?

I was drawn to Ashes because of the story, it was so heartwarming and touching and just a lovely happy feel good movie with beautiful moments and life lessons we all can be reminded of. To be honest I was actually drawn to the character Claire when I first read the script, because she is quirky and funny. But Jake convinced I’d be an amazing Sam, I read it and read it again and come to terms I am more Sam than Claire in real life. I love her tough exterior and teddy bear interior, her wise words and caring touch. I became Sam, actually no I am Sam, and she is an extension of me.

Did you know any of the other cast members going into Ashes?

Going into Ashes, I only knew Jake (Raymond) he and I have known each other since 6th grade! I am so thankful to have him as a friend. He is so passionate about his craft, and it inspires me every day. I feel so grateful to be working by his side.

Were you excited to discover another dancer on set? What is the difference, if any, in your styles and training?

Discovering another dancer on set is always a fun experience, reminiscing about recitals, teachers, the tears of happiness and joy and the life of dancer. Sarah’s training is much much more extensive than mine. The difference, she was trained at National School of Ballet, and I was in a studio more of a recreational after school type thing.

Can you tell us about your adventures as a dancer in Morocco?

Morocco! What an adventure that was. I was asked by a friend if I could do a 6 month contract dancing with a Band in a night club at a hotel called Sofitel. It was a BLAST, dancing to covers of lady gaga, maroon 5, Bruno Mars and other pop stars. I stayed in Agadir for 3 months and the last 3 months in Marrakesh. We preformed 6 nights a week with Sundays off. So there wasn’t too much time to explore more than those 2 cities we were in. I did however learn how to surf; I went to the top of the Atlas Mountain and lived in the middle of one of the largest Souks in the World. Surely a memory that will last forever.

The Indiegogo project has ended, is there any other way fans can continue to support the project? Is there an estimated completion date?

If our fans want to continue support they can follow us on twitter @Ashesmovie for info and other fun stuff!

There’s a blooper reel on the Indiegogo site – it’s such an emotional film, did you guys “cut loose” often to break up the intensity?

With Ashes being a very emotional movie, while we were filming everyone respected the mood of the characters throughout the day, but once we were wrapped there were giggles, laughs and beers of course. I remember one time, we were all exhausted and Sarah, our makeup lady Suhan and I were doing touch-ups and something was said that wasn’t even that funny, but because we were all so tired it was the funniest thing to us we laughed for a solid 5 minutes, it was great.

From reading Twitter, I can sense the commitment, and the love the actors had for this film. What makes Ashes so special?

Ashes is special because even though we didn’t all know each other when we began this project we all became friends. It was always a positive atmosphere, always so professional and just so uplifting. It will always have a special place in my heart.

On your Twitter page, it says you’d like to travel the world? Where have you been so far and where would you like to go next?

“If I could I would travel the world”, yes… wouldn’t we all? Of course, we already know I have been to Morocco. I’ve done the all-inclusive thing… Mexico, Cuba, Jamaica. Flown and Drove to Florida too many times to count (I love Disneyland, I’m a kid at heart) I’ve had the opportunity to see parts of Europe; I have been to Paris, Italy, Amsterdam, Prague, Belgium. Europe is amazing and would go back in a heartbeat. London England is another amazing place I would go to time and time again. Most recently I traveled to Costa Rica and Nicaragua for about a month in 2014. My last Adventure thus far has been to Dubai to visit my best friend. I think for my next travel adventure I would really love to go to South African or South America! or Asia!… ohh the places I could go

Have you pursued a singing career at all since graduating the Royal Conservatory?

I never did pursue much with my singing; it was more of a thing my parents put me in because I enjoyed to sing. I do really enjoy it, but I always felt my strengths were dance and acting and sort of shied away from signing, I did have a great run doing a lot of great community theatre in my home town Windsor. Do I regret not doing anything with it? Sometimes, but I don’t think I would be where I am today if I had.

Are you still into soccer? Do you play or just cheer for your favorite team which is…

Soccer, soccer, soccer. I used to be an avid soccer player but I don’t play much anymore; a scrimmage here and there, but nothing too serious. Do I cheer for any particular team? Not really… is that bad?

What are you binge watching on Netflix right now?

Not going to lie, I am binge watching Friends right now, I recently discovered it on Netflix and haven’t stopped watching it since, got to get prepared for that Friends reunion that’s going to come out! I forgot how awesome that show was

What type of projects are you looking forward to in the future?

I have a few independent short films I will be acting in setup for the beginning of this year. But other than that just super excited to audition and hopefully land some awesome characters.

Our website is called Talk Nerdy With Us, so what brings out your inner nerd? You stated on Twitter you like talking nerdy…what do you “nerd out “over?

Besides the obvious movies, food and cats bring out the nerd in me. I love my cat Stevie; he’s just as crazy as me. I have recently gotten into cooking and learning new dishes, so when someone wants to chat about food or even make food with me I will totally nerd out.

Written by Arlene Allen

Hello, my name is Arlene Allen, and I love all things nerd: genre tv and movies, books, loud rock and roll music, kittens, conventions, books, graphic novels and superheroes, RPG and tabletop games, and did I say books? Oh, yes. I spent 25 years as a librarian (nerd) mainly working with youth (creating nerds), a number of years as a teacher (more nerd indoctrination). I have my own spawn, leveled up to 22 and my partner in nerdiness. As a nerdy writer, I have found a home at Talk Nerdy With Us.

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