Meet John Pirkis from London who moved to LA three and a half years ago to pursue Hollywood.
Was there a particular reason you chose LA?
I had been visiting friends out here over the past 22 years who were constantly urging me to move over here. On the last trip to LA before my move, I booked with a theatrical management (agency) and took the leap.
What one thing do you miss from home?
Battersea Park! I could see the park from my bedroom window, that’s how close I was. Loved everything about it! Strolling by the Thames, Albert Bridge all lit up, the Buddhist Temple, the bandstand of the weekend, Mister Softee 99 ice cream cone with Cadbury’s flake, Bonfire Night, wrapped up against the wind and the rain, kicking your way through the puddles and piles of dropped autumnal leaves, the birdsong, especially the Blackbirds. Mmmmmm!
What do you find the biggest difference is living here versus the UK?
My workload has shot up! There is a very definite and palpable shift in the number of auditions I am attending. Everyone is so supportive and positive around you. People will tell you that’s a by-product of the Californian sunshine. Perhaps, but I believe it’s more than that; there is a genuine held belief here that anything is achievable, and don’t take no for an answer.
Do you have a hidden gem in LA that you want to share with us?
So well hidden, I have only recently discovered it: Grub Restaurant at 911 Seward St in Hollywood. Tucked away in a residential street, a white picket fenced garden leads to the steps up into the 50′s-style relaxed interior of the cafe. They present Californian Comfort Food to die for. Their Tuna Melt has been voted the Best in LA, and their Crack Bacon (Secret homemade recipe), is literally addictive. Check ‘em out here: http://grub-la.com/
What would you suggest to others who are thinking about making the move here?
Do your homework! DO NOT just hop on a plane with a handful of dollars, no set place to rest your head, and set about knocking on the doors of agents, managers and casting directors ad hoc; if you attempt that, you will be very quickly hightailing it to LAX and back home. Come here, not for one week, not for two weeks, come for at least three weeks to get a feel for the city, to get the lay of the land. Investigate what it takes to secure a working visa, and what you can and can’t do workwise once you have that all important 0-1. When you are in tune with LA, it truly is the City of Angels, and you can spread your wings and soar. Until you give it a go, you just won’t know!
Lastly, how can we find you on the Internet?