October 2, 2022

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INTERVIEW: Alex Stoicescu, debut role in Radu Afrim – Stiri din Mures, Stiri Targu mures

About how to make your own way

An actor who graduated from the University of Arts in Târgu Mureș, and a student in the master’s program of the same university in the class of Nicolae Cristache, Alexandru Stoicescu is on the verge of stepping towards a remarkable future in the profession he has chosen, or which chosen. If you catch him stomping on the crosswalk, you can understand that he is always preoccupied with something, either a role, or the fact that he didn’t make it to lunch, or the fact that he has little free time and does not know whether to study something or to rest. I invite you, therefore, to read the thoughts of an actor before an important debut in the following lines.

On watch in the corn field

When he was little he had a band and made videos with his phone’s VGA camera because he liked being an artist. Later the germ of the show caught on to him, and never left him. With success at the Faculty of Chemical Engineering, he still chose to use logical thinking in the acting profession.

“I wrote lyrics on the negative of the song ‘Waka-Waka.’ We had a small Alcatel phone and we filmed ourselves dancing with choreography and singing in the corn, in Solovăstru. From there I started to like the idea of ​​performing, I was singing and they told me I had a voice, but then I was five, six years old. I reached middle school and had to choose a high school. I chose the Natural Sciences profile (bio-chemistry) because I wanted to get rid of anything that meant dull: history, Romanian, and I said that this fits, and indeed it did. At the end of the twelfth grade I entered Chemical Engineering. At the same time I was also preparing for the theater. I was playing in an amateur theater group in Reghin, at the Youth Club. I was part of the cast of two shows and went to many places with them, including Brașov, Medgidia, Caracal, and from there I caught this microbe. I wanted to be there, on stage, it was and I was important, I think the theater had started to matter more and more to me. I was shy, but I found that I could hide behind the characters, I found my escape. I called an actress I knew and asked her: “Should I go to the theater?” He said: “Go!”. From that day on, I didn’t want to do anything else but prepare for the theater.

Thanks to mathematics, my logical thinking developed a lot. I think very pragmatically. Meanwhile I also developed my creative side and now I combine them.”

“I was raised with love, and I think that’s why I can cry”

Going through the college years, Alex’s path was not without challenges, the acting faculty being an extremely demanding one for a conscientious student who does not want to miss a single minute of work, especially since the pandemic hit him “directly in Shakespeare”, as they say. However, he managed to recover from the unintentional hiatus and more than that, to work on his acting career even from the warmth of his home hearth.

“I didn’t know what was waiting for me and I was hit hard from the beginning because I was working on a show directed by Mihai Crăciun with the band from Reghin. The premiere was about after the first week of college and Puiu, the teacher of Suzuki and ViewPoints, had come, and the schedule had become a busy one at the college. I also went to Medifun, I had paid 200 lei and I couldn’t go. I commuted to Reghin daily, plus the university. Although it was the first week of college, Puiu and I rehearsed daily and rehearsed a lot. I cried every day when I got there because I couldn’t take it anymore. I’m a whiny person, I’ve been crying since I was little. I was a mother and maybe that’s why… but I think I was raised with love and I think that’s why I allow myself to cry.

The pandemic was hard. After the first semester where I understood what acting was all about, we hit those horrible emotions from the acting exams in the first semester of freshman year. Then when we chose the texts, I was going to work on “Crime and Punishment” in class. I went home for a month, and that turned into a year, a lost year I say…because I was studying Shakespeare sitting in a chair. However, at home I made a work schedule: I had physical training, then I did diction, singing and then rehearsing texts for acting or reading, I watched a movie from the “important” list every day. If I didn’t have this break I probably wouldn’t have had time to do all these things with my busy college schedule. It was, however, a year in which we also had something to gain. I’m back in college and I think I’ve recovered quite a bit.”

Acting is not an easy job. It seems simple to recite a poem or make people laugh, but behind this appearance, there are some people who are slowly breaking down in an attempt to search and find the truth in the characters they play. This mission comes along with more or less happy life experiences that the actors convert into acting tools.

“I think an actor has to go through a lot of experiences in his life, and not only as an actor but also as a person in general. Even more so in the profession of an actor because we work with feelings, with moods and if you don’t live them then you only sketch them, you can only reproduce a sensation. When you live them, you relate to any situation differently, you understand the characters differently. I think that no matter how difficult it may be in some moments of your life, if you manage to get over them you can use them very usefully in your job. An example is the character “Tuzenbach” from the show “Three Sisters” staged by Irina Moscu at Teatrul Studio, where I managed to get very close to what I had to do because I lived an experience similar to that of the character.”

Photo: Radu Afrim

Luck is what happens when preparation meets opportunity.

Alex worked enormously to be able to honor the chance to play his debut role in the show “Ierbar”, after “The Book of Plants” by Simona Popescu, staged by director Radu Afrim at the National Theater in Târgu Mureș, at only 21 years old. It seems that where there is hard work and dedication, there is also luck, provided you constantly fight to be able to embrace it with force.

“This debut role is a very important thing for me, especially since it’s not just any debut role, it’s a debut at Radu Afrim. Besides the visibility that working with such a director gives me, the experience it brings me is an important first step. I approach this role as I approach any other role, with seriousness and a lot of hard work. I treat a supporting role and a leading role with the same conscientiousness, no matter where or who I play. All these things happened so quickly that I did not realize what was happening to me. I moved on from the show with Irina Moscu for which I was working at the Studio Theatre, and ended up working at the National Theater during the rehearsals. It was a constructed show, because it had been rehearsed for almost a month at his place before I came. The period of accommodation came with the recovery of what had been repeated until then. I was so involved and excited that I didn’t feel like it was happening to me. Now that I look back, it’s huge. Some actors I couldn’t wait to meet backstage after their shows, and now I’m exchanging lines with them on stage…

I consider myself lucky. I know a lot of people in college work hard, but I think you also need a little luck. That’s how the planets aligned for me, and I got there. After I got on stage I kept working to prove that I deserve that place, but the opportunity was offered to me”.

Photo: Radu Afrim

“Because I am a man who loves, I know what to look for and then I look for love”

The role that Alexandru Stoicescu plays in Radu Afrim’s show is an abandoned child, whom even love can’t seem to find anymore, a child opposite to what Alex was at the beginning of his life. A role that consumes a lot of physical and mental energy.

“He is a child from the Children’s Home who grew up without parents. Every time I start this story I start the same way…but I think this child is not defined only by this condition. He is a helpless child, who has many needs, he is a child broken by the lack of love in his life, a child driven away by everyone, beaten, thrown away. It was not difficult for me to accept it and it was not difficult for me to reach it because I did not set out to play helplessness, but to play need. Because I am a man who loves, I know what to look for and then I look for love. That’s what I try to look for in every other character out there, and then every interaction turns into being close, feeling the warmth. So many things happen to my character that I don’t have to show what I suffered until then because it is very well understood from the construction of the show”.

“I serve the show, I don’t necessarily serve my purpose”

We will probably hear more about Alexandru Stoicescu’s future and he will certainly do honor to his family, his teachers and above all to himself. He wants to play, play and play. And who can stop him?

“I would like to act in horror shows. Besides, this role in Radu Afrim’s Show is one that I want to play. It consumes me a lot physically and emotionally, because the baby is huge. Everything that lives is excruciating for a human body. It’s all over. At the same time, I think I’d like to play a role in Shakespeare, to physically work on it because that’s not what I’ve done. I want to have a job in the theater, not to limit myself but to play with experienced actors and directors, to learn the trade in this way as well. I went to college to get a solid foundation, but I realize that I also need the experience in a theater. Later I think I see myself walking from one city to another, having collaborations, having dynamics. I can’t see myself doing anything else. I can do something else, but I live for the theater. Maybe it’s just a youthful whim and later I’ll realize it’s just a job but for now I feel like that’s all I want to do.

I like to believe that I am not a proud man, because I have nothing to gain. I serve the show, I don’t necessarily serve my purpose. Unfortunately, I don’t see this in everyone and I feel that something is missing. The purpose of the theater is not to make you stand out, but to give, to sell stories, for a person to come to the theater and leave after the show differently. Let’s give… I think that would be the only goal”.


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