Nicholas Alexander Chavez and Tabyana Ali share an intensity onscreen that has caused fans to fall in love with the pairing of their characters, Spencer Cassadine and Trina Robinson. Now that young actors explain their process of handling some of those challenging scenes.
Nicholas Alexander Chavez & Tabyana Ali Dig Deep
Chavez and Ali recently spent an evening with a few hundred “Sprina” fans at a Coastal Entertainment Zoom event. One attendee, Autumn, asked how they prepare for intense scenes like the ones where Trina visited Spencer in Pentonville.
“I go home, and I do my homework,” began Chavez after Ali prompted him to go first. “That consists of looking at what my objectives are in a scene, right? So what do I want, and what am I willing to do to get what I want and that’s my tactics. And I separate my scenes into beats. It’s a real Stanislavskian approach to acting.
“There is a technical aspect to all of that,” he continued, “and that homework gets done, I’d say, roughly five days in advance of when I shoot it because that’s about when I get the script. There’s only so much you can do because as I’m doing all of my work, and then Tabyana is doing a great job doing all of her work, and then, the director is doing theirs, producers are doing theirs, and everyone’s process collides really, really late.
“Our processes collide on the day that we [tape] what you guys see. So right before we filmed it, we blocked it, and that was the first time we got any of the blocking, that was the first time we talked to the director about the scene. Sometimes Tabyana will work a couple of days leading up [to it], but oftentimes it can be the first time Tabyana and I are running that scene together. So the processes collide relatively late, so it changes a little bit so it’s a mixture of being very, very, very prepared and then being willing to let go of some of that preparedness in favor of what other creatives need in order to have a successful take of the scene.”
“I want to talk on the day of,” began Tabyana Ali. “I think the process of how we got to that point, even though we had our own individual things like you said, we did come together as a collaborative effort, and we were both trying to discuss — okay, this is my point of view on it, this is my point of view, now how are we going to go at it in the same direction, where I felt like maybe this could have been taken like absolutely vulnerable with you, and I try to get answers, and I’m trying to figure out myself and you and us and how we’re going to work through this because obviously there is a bunch of tension in the air that we can’t ignore. So the day of was a lot of back and forth and a lot of breaking down the script and understanding our point of views.”
They also talked about the give-and-take when one person feels adamant about something. Chavez admitted there are times when she would point something out that he didn’t see. “I’m so grateful, so it’s also about being open to things you didn’t see before, which is awesome.”
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