Suesha Rana is a Nepali-origin Australia-based theater actress. In late August she responded to my questions about her life, career and what it means to be an Asian artist in Australia. A profile based on the interview was published in Hello Shukrabar, a Kantipur Daily supplement on youth and lifestyle.
Q: Can you tell me about your childhood? Where were you born, what did your parents do for living etc.
A: I had a pretty normal childhood growing up, I was born in Kathmandu and went to a few schools there. I also went to school in Jaipur, India during primary school. But, I settled in Perth, Western Australia when I was 9 years old. My father was Sahadev Rana, he was the managing director of Hotel de'l Annapurna and my mother was a full time mom.
What drove you towards acting?
Acting was something that came quite naturally to me and always really enjoyed. I've always been a bit of an entertainer, being a clown and loving the attention. I've always enjoyed exploring characters, I use it as an escape from the monotony of life every now and then.
Which was your first play? Can you share your experiences of that moment?
My first play was The King and I, and it was a school play. I loved being on stage, especially the adrenaline of being in front of so many people and being appreciated for what I was doing which was entertaining.
When did you feel that you will be a full time actor?
I'm hoping to fully launch into acting next year when I have finished my bachelors degree in commerce. Also, living in Western Australia there is very little opportunity for work in terms of acting, therefore I have decided to go to L.A next year to study more acting and pursue a career there.
What is it like acting in Australia? Can you give a sense of what it is like to be acting in that country?
Acting in Western Australia is a very good starting point. It's great in terms of gaining experience. There is definitely more work available in the eastern state of Australia, however I find there is very little jobs available for Asians.
What is your biggest achievement so far? Any awards, recognitions for any role?
My biggest achievement so far would be having the opportunity to work with Melanie Rodriga who is a very well known director in Australia.
What types of role do you do? When and how did you get your first break in Australian movie?
I like many different roles. The more different the better, as this really expands your versatility as an actor. I like characters that need a lot of thought, it's exciting to delve into the minds of complex characters. I'm still waiting for a big break in Australian movie as I originally started as a theatre actress.
Do you also do stereotypical roles that the non-white actors in a predominantly white country often do?
Definitely, especially when starting out its always the stereotypical characters.
You have mentioned in you bio that you've acted in movies like My Past My Present, Music etc. What were your roles? What was your experience like?
My past My present was a great experience, I got to understand the film world as I originally started as a theater actress. My role was a supporting role of a self fish young well established woman.
What is your next goal/movie/theater act? Do you plan to enter Hollywood?
I'm a pretty easy going person, I'm thankful for any role that comes my way. I'm keen to do more film and television rather than theater and next year I plan to do so in L.A if all goes according to plan
Have you watched Nepali films? If yes, what are they?
I left Nepal when I was really young and Nepali movies don't really make their way into the western world. The only one I remember is Prempind and that was a very very long time ago.
What is your dream role? Who is your dream director? What is your most favorite movie? Actor/actress?
My dream role would be a someone like Angelina Jolie's character in the movie Girl Interrupted and my dream director would be Tim Burton and Sophia Cappola. Favourite actor would be Johhny Depp and favorite actress would be Sandra Bullock
Anything you would like to say (that I haven't asked)?
I always tell people to dream big and go for it no matter what it takes. The universe always brings to you what you ask of it.