Bettina Interview (2004) by RainbowBrite.Co.Uk

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Rainbow Brite
Voice Acting: Rainbow Brite
Voice Acting: Other (non Rainbow Brite)
Films: Journey to Spirit Island
Music: Rainbow Brite
Music: Lucky Girl

Rainbow Brite:

1: What is one of your fondest traits of the Character?

Bettina: I love the star on her cheek, and as the shortest kid in my family I always dug the fact that she's short!

2: What was a story or subject you would have liked to see your character face?

Bettina: I always thought it would be neat if she lived a day in the life of Brian and got to know his friends, then maybe it was erased from their memories once she went back to her regular life.

3: From the recording to animation, how long did the process take?

Bettina: Recording the shows took about 4 - 6 hours per episode. Rehearsal in the morning, break, then record. It was always at least 4 months if not longer before shows aired.

4: Animators in general often take the actors in to consideration when animating the characters, where any of your characteristics used in the animation of Rainbow Brite?

Bettina: Nope, I was given a picture of her, as were the rest of the actors, at the sound studio.

5: With the new introduction of the characters, and being of the original cast, are there any hopes of a reunion?

Bettina: Not that I'm aware of, so many of us still see each other around and have done other shows together that I don't know if it has crossed anyone's mind! That would be fun.

6: Were there any lines in the script that were not used? Often lines are clipped for length or other purposes of editing, do you remember any?
And can you share some with us?

Bettina: That happened a lot, and they would also allow me to make suggestions if I thought something was written out of character i.e. not something a kid would say. Also, some of the great comedic talent of Pat Fraley was thrown in when he would ad-lib as Lurky--very funny. I wish I could remember specific things, but I can only remember that it did happen.

Voice Acting: Rainbow Brite

1: Being of such a young age at the time of your casting, how much of your tone do you think developed or was influenced by your time in the studio? To clarify, did you have a vocal coach, or any training to strengthen your voice?

Bettina: I definitely developed far more technical skill and voice technique from growing up in studios. That is still a competitive edge for me in competing for roles with adult actors who don't have much studio experience. Having worked with some of the best voice over actors and directors as a child, I also learned more things than I can count about professionalism and respect for other people's abilities. Fortunately, I never developed any inhibitions as far as taking risks with acting choices or voice characterizations because I knew from experience that risks may not always work out, but it is always better to try something out and not be embarrassed. That is a problem I have noticed many adult vo actors struggle with, especially females. I have had vocal coaches and acting coaches my entire life for both singing and acting. I think my lessons started around 8 and never stopped.

2: Studios differ in there methods of recording voice actors, some are recorded, all the actors in the same room actually acting off the other’s performance, others are recorded separately, acting to no one, having to repeat lines in different ways. For the recordings of Rainbow Brite, how was the studio time arranged?

Bettina: Depended upon the actors' schedules. For the most part we recorded everything as a cast, but there were times when we were split up. I recall recording one episode ( I don't know which one) alone because I had a booking conflict.

3: Being one of the youngest cast members, was there another cast member who influenced you the most?

Bettina: Pat Fraley - what a talent. Genius.

4: Was there any advice given that you take to heart from your cast mates?

Bettina: Yes, Pat told me how fortunate I was to bypass "breaking in" to voice overs and to never take that for granted. GOOD ADVICE.

5: Acting in front of a microphone can be awkward depending on the scene you are having to do or what your character is reacting to. Was there a time in doing this that you asked yourself "What am I doing?", and what did you have to do?

Bettina: Of course, I ALWAYS have silly moments, that's half the fun! Normally it's when you are in a struggle or fight or running and you are just making these random silly sounds until the director signals you to stop - you just know you look lame! You definitely can't be vain or take yourself too seriously, there's just no place for that and you'd miss out on all the laughs!

Voice Acting: Other (non Rainbow Brite)

1: What is a character you have enjoyed playing the most?

Bettina: Come on now...RAINBOW BRITE!!!

2: What is a character you have played that is the most difficult?

Bettina: I don't think I have any characters that I see as difficult - I guess Megan on My Little Pony was challenging because the schedule was hectic, but I saw that as fun not difficult. 65 episodes, 65 songs, lots of homework!

3: What is a character you have wanted to play, but have not?

Bettina: A PowerPuff Girl.

4: Was there a time in doing this that you asked yourself "What am I doing?", and what did you have to do?

Bettina: Auditioning sometimes when they really don't have a clue what they want so you're just creating characters based on descriptions like "old but young sounding" or "slightly snobby but friendly". At that point you just feel like throwing your hands up and writing the script yourself. Not as uncommon as you think, but the upside is you get to create whatever you want since the description really doesn't make any sense.

Films: Journey to Spirit Island

1: On record this is your only live action film in which you have been in. Are there more that we do not know of?

Bettina: Nope, this is it.

2: If this is the only film, what drew you to this part?

Bettina: Loved the character, the fact that it was a positive family film and the idea of a location shoot.

3: What memories do you have of this film that you are fond of?

Bettina: Soooo many, what a fun time! I loved being so close to the seals when we were canoeing, they were really friendly. I really loved the beauty of that film, learning to canoe from real champion canoe teams was a blast!

4: What was most difficult?

Bettina: Swimming in FREEZING water. I stood on the rocks and cried before one scene because I just couldn't bear the thought of having to go in again! I sucked it up and we got the shot and I felt ashamed for being so unprofessional. My Mom had to talk me through the fact that I was just a kid and it was okay to sometimes be emotional because I was working so hard and I could stop whenever I wanted. I didn't want to stop, I was just exhausted and needed a break.

5: Do you still wish to act in films?

Bettina: I've had offers that I have turned down because of nudity or subject matter. It would be great, I enjoy it, and when the right fit comes along I'll do it again. I don't pursue it ambitiously mostly because there are only so many hours in the day and my career focus tends to choose itself through opportunities that are presented that feel right. I believe in going with the flow in that way.

6: if so what is a film or character you would like to play?

Bettina: I'd love a role like Jennifer Lopez played in The Wedding Planner or something like Liv Tyler in Lord Of The Rings. Haven't thought about it much, actually, but those I like.

7: The character you played in the film was native American (Indian),
what culture do you follow?

Bettina: My family is multicultural and I tend to appreciate and embrace all of it rather than choosing one.

8: How did the experience influence your acting?

Bettina: The experience of shooting Spirit Island? Having been in sooo many plays before and after that, I think it gave me a larger technical repertoire and more versatility. Having a clear understanding of what goes into acting in a film causes you to view other actors' performances much differently and encourages you to continue learning. I am a perpetual student mostly because that film taught me that there are so many ways to express a character, but you can only make those choices when you have the skills to draw on. My director really taught me that, he got the best out of me everyday and I always wished I could give more. That's why I keep trying to learn more.

Music: Rainbow Brite Albums

1: As far as I can hear, you seem to be the only original cast member on the album from the show, except perhaps Starlite, Murky and Lurky, but I can’t tell. Did you meet or know the other people on the album?

Bettina: I did meet everyone from the album and went on to sing with a lot of them on film scores and other albums. Great group, no names you would know. It was fun doing the same character but working with new faces. Lots more kids!

2: Was there a song on the album you enjoy most?

Bettina: Make Room For A Rainbow Inside and Starlite Rainbow Brite are my favorites!

3: Do you know or can you share who the other singers are? (Twink, Starlite, Patty O'Green, Murky, Lurky)

Bettina: Don't remember their last names, haven't seen any of them in a loooong time. I do remember that by the time I was high school age most of the kids were no longer working - they had decided to focus on school and college. A boy named Peter and a girl named Mijan were still working and that was it. Love those albums so much.

Music: Lucky Girl

1: Words can be taken many ways, and can not be taken at face value considering songwriters tell a story with their words, what is the story you are wanting to tell by your lyrics?

Bettina: What a HUGE question. A lot of me and my experiences and/or emotions are in there, I guess it's just basic honest self-expression. They are not all autobiographical songs, many are observations of people and behaviors and how we all relate.

2: What are you most proud of on this album?

Bettina: Wow...I guess that there is hopefully some element that can touch or move every person somewhere in the body of songs. That it all came from an authentic, real place and we all share those emotions.

3: Lucky Girl: What I hear is an artist truly blessed in many ways, a Midas touch to all her ambitions. What do you want us to hear?

Bettina: THANKFUL, GRATEFUL GIRL who realizes that she is no better than anyone else, but for some reason she's been blessed. And she's not going to take it for granted or waste it.

4: Pages of Us: This song again, like with most of your songs can not be classed to a single style. I hear a blues like tone to the vocals, a western vibe to the guitar, and a pop hook that has the ability to stick in your head.

Bettina: Thanks, that's what we were aiming for. That's my "I need to get this break up out of my system" song. It really helped me to move on.

5: . Are there any songs that reflect your childhood in your album?

Bettina: "American Town" reflects both my and Cary's outrage and sympathy over the financial corporate scandals that plagued this country last year. The one that reflects my childhood is actually "She Is". That song is about my parents' marriage and the way my Dad looks at my Mom.

6: Do you play an instrument that helps with your writing? If so what do you play?

Bettina: A little piano, a little guitar, neither exceedingly well, but enough to get from point A to point B.