The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

Active NE student is a jack of all trades, focuses on artistic values

NE+student+Roxy+Astemborski+enjoys+acting%2C+singing+and+painting.+She+graduated+from+Pepperdine+University+with+a+degree+in+French.+She+came+to+TCC+for+her+love+of+the+arts.+Photo+by+David+Reid%2FThe+Collegian
NE student Roxy Astemborski enjoys acting, singing and painting. She graduated from Pepperdine University with a degree in French. She came to TCC for her love of the arts. Photo by David Reid/The Collegian

By Marley Malenfant/feature editor

NE student Roxy Astemborski is considered a triple threat. As she prepares for another theater production on NE Campus, she’s just as eager to work on another painting or focus on her singing.

She started acting in the eighth grade in a play titled Dear God, Let Me Be Popular. Astemborski returned to Texas in 2010, a year after graduating from Pepperdine University, getting two degrees in French and advertising.

Seeing what her friends went through in California, she turned off the idea of pursuing an acting career.  

“You’d think,‘Oh, you’re out there in LA,’” she said. “In LA, it’s hard not to feel like a little fish out there. You’re a microscopic fish. I had friends who were talented, funny and gorgeous, and they were just happy after four years to be sleeping on a couch and serve somebody coffee on the side. I got parents to take care of one day. So I had to make a choice.”

During her time in California, Astemborski got a gig as James Cameron’s assistant. She saw the job posting on Craigslist but said she didn’t feel qualified when she applied.

NE student Roxy Astemborski enjoys acting, singing and painting. She graduated from Pepperdine University with a degree in French. She came to TCC for her love of the arts. Photo by David Reid/The Collegian
NE student Roxy Astemborski enjoys acting, singing and painting. She graduated from Pepperdine University with a degree in French. She came to TCC for her love of the arts. Photo by David Reid/The Collegian

“A one-liner ad came up for a family needing a nanny, and they wanted someone with a master’s in child psychology,” she said. “I wasn’t cut out for it, but I got a killer résumé, and one day I got a call. You work for a guy like that, and you kinda have a taste of what it’s like to have infinite wealth.”

After working for Cameron, Astemborski spent some time in Costa Rica to follow her passion of painting. She learned a teacher had an artist colony on the island.

“I started painting my last two years at Pepperdine, and I fell in love with it,” she said. “It’s summer after college, and I Google this teacher’s name. And his name comes up on a painter’s colony in Costa Rica, and I’m like ‘What?’ So I’m like, ‘Sign me up.’”

While living at the artist colony, Astemborski worked little odd jobs on the island. She taught a yoga class, worked at a juice bar and managed a small hotel business.

“I went three times since then,” she said.

Astemborski came to TCC to brush up on her sciences. She was considering medical school as a way to do something other than the arts.

During the first day of class, she walked past a sign advertising auditions for Macbeth. With nothing to lose, Astemborski read for a part.

Since then, she has played in Sexual Perversity in Chicago and An Evening with Samuel Beckett. She’ll also play in an opera for NE Campus and in its next theater production The Miser playing Frosine. She is also part of the Texas Women’s Choir of Dallas.

After hearing her in voice lessons, NE music instructor  Stan Pascal asked her to try for the opera.

“I figured I’ll walk in, say a monologue. Next thing I know, I was Lady Macbeth,” she said. “I was re-falling in love with theater. I was in private voice lessons and I guess after he heard my recital, he thought I could do an opera piece.”

Astemborski said she’s also had fun trying to promote herself as an actress using YouTube. A friend of hers who works for a production company came up with the idea.

“A project was coming up, so he asked me to do an audition video and I got really excited about it,” she said. “I worked with a videographer from TCC named Brandon Tompkins. The project that the audition was for fell through, but the production company ended up not having the money. But it was great.”

Astemborski said she doesn’t let her love for acting confine her and tries to do multiple things. She tutors often and said she sees herself teaching voice and art lessons. She said theater is her way of staying sharp. Making it big time isn’t what she’s after, and she is pleased she can do other things.

She said one of her closest friends spent seven years in LA and was lucky enough to play an extra on a Harrison Ford film.  He called when he made it into the Screen Actors Guild, but that didn’t ensure a job, she said.

“He lived on a couch, and he couldn’t drive during the day because his car would overheat,” she said. “If he had to be at a set at 10 a.m., he would have to leave his house at 5 a.m. to beat the sun, and then sit in his car for four hours and sleep.

“He was like ‘Roxy, I want to take you to see the new Indiana Jones. I’m in it.’ And he had like maybe three seconds in the scene and there’s maybe like 15 people on the screen. And he’s like a soldier in the background.”

Every day is different for Astemborski. Some days, she wakes up and wants to paint, play in a chess tournament and play her guitar. Other days she wants to study science. People who tell her she should stick to one thing annoy her. That’s not living life, she said.

“I got this left brain-right brain thing going on,” she said. “It’s my kryptonite. What I think will happen for me is I’ll end up teaching. I’ll probably never stop painting, and I’ll probably never stop acting and never stop going to school. But I’ve had people tell me the happiest they’ve ever seen me is when I teach.”

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