In October 2015, Samantha Walsh (BFA Theatre Performance ’09) wrapped up Rush, the debut production by Team Awesome Robot, a theatrical collaboration initiative co-founded by Walsh’s fiancée, Christopher Diercksen, and fellow UF alumna Yvonne Hartung. Rush is a new play written by Callie Kimball and set during the Yukon Gold Rush of 1899. Characters Belinda and Frank stand at a new threshold of life, but only if they can escape the horrors of their past. Walsh graced the stage playing the role of Belinda alongside co-star Christopher Norwood who played Frank.
“There were actually a lot of UF people involved in the production and crew of Rush,” says Walsh.
Around the same time, Walsh also did a reading of Daniel John Kelley’s adaptation of Wagner’s Ring Circle where she played the role of Brenda. Since Rush closed Walsh has taken a break from stage reading and re-focused her efforts on film work.
“I’ve been doing a lot of independent films,” says Walsh. “It is a completely different feeling from theatre. I like both a lot.”
Two aspects of film that attract Walsh are its intimacy and simplicity. “If you screw up you can do it over,” she says. “You can't do that in front of a live audience.”
The first film Walsh ever acted in was Allison Bagnall’s Funny Bunny.
“She (Bagnall) co-wrote a film I really loved as a child called Buffalo ’66, and we met when I moved to New York,” Walsh says. “Since then, we’ve kept in touch and that’s how I got involved with Funny Bunny.”
Funny Bunny has been going around the film festival circuit for some time now and will be released on a bigger platform in January 2016.
In the meantime, Walsh continues to partner with Diercksen and Hartung. The trio’s latest project is a web series titled Jeannie and Mo, which will be released in February 2016.