Hazelle Goodman [Interview]

 

Hello Folks! Happy Friday to you all. It is Friday after all, in case you forgot. Today we have the pleasure of having the a legendary performer gracing our digital pages. It’s Hazelle Goodman, Everyone! I first came to love Hazelle for her incredible performance in one of my favorite films of all time, and also what I consider to be the best film from the legendary filmmaker Woody Allen, which would be Deconstructing Harry. She is so damn good in it, really just stealing the show. And of course, Hazelle has done some amazing work in films like Heat, Hannibal, Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close, and more! She has also done some wonderful work on the stage, including her infamous one woman show “Hazelle, What’s Going On?”.

And as it usually tends to be, thankfully, Hazelle turned out to be an extremely kind and funny human being with some pretty wonderful responses. We are so excited to have her join the TWS family. So Folks, please enjoy some wonderful words from the brilliant Hazelle Goodman!

 

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When did you first discover your passion for the world of performance? Was it something you had dreamt of doing since your youth, or did you happen to find yourself in this world one day?

I first discovered my passion for the world of performance as a little girl growing up in Trinidad, WI.  My cousin took me to the movie theatre for the first time to see Sound of Music and my dream was born!  LOL!

I always loved performing when company visited but seeing all those kids in Sound of Music made me realize it was possible.

 

What was your first paid gig in the world of entertainment? And were there any sort of lessons learned from this experience that still affect your work today?

Honestly, I can’t remember my first paid gig but the stellar training I received at the Aaron Davis Center at the City College of New York gave me a solid foundation for my work. 

Recently, I had the awesome privilege of being coached by one of my teachers from CCNY, Robbie McCauley.  She coached me in preparing to do a revival of my one woman show, which had been an HBO Special entitled “Hazelle!”.  Our revival, “Hazelle, What’s Goin On?”, enjoyed sold out performances at NYC’s Off Broadway Triad Theatre.  We look forward to a successful Broadway run!

 

You gave an absolutely phenomenal performance in my favorite Woody Allen comedic films, Deconstructing Harry. I am curious to know what drew you to the role as Cookie? What was it about this project that appealed to you the most and made you decide you wanted to take on this role?

I really knew nothing about the role of Cookie.  Woody doesn’t give you the script  in advance so I was clueless.  I went to the audition in my running clothes and sneakers.   As God would have it, in one of my lines, the character said something about working out.  LOL! 

The role was controversial because I was the first black woman to appear in a Woody Allen film and I was playing a hooker.  However, I loved the role.  Cookie was strong, funny and deep in a unique way.  

 

You have done a lot of work both on the big and small screen, as well as on the stage. I am curious to know what your preferred medium is to work in? If you were forced to only stick to one for the remained of your career, what would it be?

I enjoy the wide exposure that film and television give.  You are able to impact millions globally at once.  But, I love hearing the laughter, seeing the tears and receiving the warm hugs of my audiences.  Only the theatre can give that magical intimacy, that peep into our souls.

 

If you were handed the opportunity to portray any legendary figure in world history, who would it be?

I would love the opportunity to portray Sojourner Truth.  Her words “Ain’t I a woman too?” have always haunted me on so many levels as a dark skin, black woman with kinky hair in America. In addition, her courageous work as an abolitionist leader, advocate of women’s rights and prison reform is truly inspiring.  

 

 

What does the future hold for you? Anything you would like to plug to our readers?

For the last several years, I have had the privilege of ministering to incarcerated women at a maximum security prison for women.  Many of them are serving 25 to life.  One young woman that I have been ministering to since 2014 is finally being released this year 2020.  She has served 25 years.  What I have discovered is that the woman I’m meeting today is not the same person that committed the crime 25 years ago.  Most of these women were in there 20’s when they made wrong choices and are deeply remorseful now in there 50’s and older.  My heart fills with  an indescribable joy as I see them receive a second chance.  

My bright future includes bringing the love of Jesus Christ to the incarcerated and leading them out healed and transformed.  I see me starring in impactful roles in film, television and Broadway.  I see “Hazelle, What’s Goin On?”, a Broadway hit, touching, moving and inspiring lives.  I see me winning Oscars, Emmys, Tonys, Golden Globes, and a Nobel Peace Prize.  I see a loving and mutually empowering marriage.  I see me hugging freely without concern for social distance and self quarantine measures.  LOL!!

 

What was the last thing that made you smile?

The last thing that made me smile was answering these wonderful questions 🙂

 

About rontrembathiii
write. write. write.

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