Meet Victoria Hoffman from Kansas City who moved to LA a million years ago (ok, over 20) to pursue this crazy dream of being a Sitcom Star!
Was there a particular reason you chose LA ?
Funny, I rather fell into it. I was doing Equity Theatre in Kansas City, and was co-starring with Eric Douglas. Yes, THAT Eric Douglas, rest his soul. He and my director, Ron Link (who LA natives will remember fondly) kept telling me New York was dead and that I needed to get to LA. That they could really help me. At that time, actually, very few television shows shot in NYC. As it happens, my Aunt & Uncle lived out here, so I decided to take a 2 week vacation and check it out. I answered an ad for a job as a Page at ABC Studios, just on a lark...and I was offered the job! So I quickly packed up my life and made the move!
What do you miss most from home?
I miss a few things. I miss how green it is. Kansas City is a beautiful, lush town. Much more cosmopolitan than you would think. The change of seasons as well - Autumn colors, the crisp Autumn air. It also has a distinct aroma that we don't get out here. And the Barbeque, of course.....it's legendary. No one gets it exactly right out here.
What was your first impression of LA and has it changed since?
I was overwhelmed, at first, by the sheer size of it. The entrance ramps on the freeways were "white knuckle" events every day. The size may very well be bigger now, but I certainly don't feel it as much. Oh, i detest the traffic and craziness on our roads, but I have grown accustomed to them. What I find remarkable, however, is what a small town we actually are. Certainly our community of artists. When I go to the theatre or to a film, I always see someone, if not several people I know. I run into friends at the market, out at dinner, even hiking. I love that feeling, that sense of having a community, a tribe.
What do you find the biggest difference is living here versus Kansas City?
Well, it's been such a long time, but here's one thing I notice often. I find that people in conversation with you in KC will make direct eye contact. They are with you. I find this odd, not unexpected darting of the eyes here...surveying the room to see who else might be in proximity. Know what? I don't get that from my adopted Brits family. Your Mum's raised you right!
Do you have a hidden gem in LA that you want to share with us? It may not be that hidden any longer, but Auntie Em's on Eagle Rock Blvd makes THE BEST coconut cupcake on the planet.
|Apparently so good the LA Times wrote an article about them!|
What would you suggest to others who are thinking about making the move here? Anything is possible here in LA. You have the access and tools to make your life what you envision it to be. But YOU have the MAKE it. No one will do it for you. So network, find a community, surround yourself with like-minded artists, editors, grant writers, programmers, anyone with your shared interests and the skill sets you may not possess to get work out into the world. Do I sound pollyannaish? Well, I am - unabashedly so.
|Victoria in the Noel Coward play The Vortex with Craig Young|
Lots of our members join our group Brits in LA seeking out words of wisdom - what is the best piece of advice you've been given ?
"If you can see yourself doing anything else, you had better go do that." It takes drive, discipline, temerity, intense passion and follow through to make your dream a reality. Stick with it. It could happen overnight, it could take 10 years, it could take a lifetime.