Though Josh Lucia was not in his first production until his freshman year of high school, he claims he has been acting since he was born. “I’ve always considered that we are all acting, especially when it comes to our varied circles: work, personal, school, etc.” Lucia serves as the Managing Director of Smokestack Theatre Company, in addition to running his own videography business, Lucia Video. As one can imagine, running a business and a nonprofit theatre leads to a pretty hectic life. Lucia says, “My brain is a busy place. I am typically thinking about ten things at once. When I am on stage, rehearsing or performing a show, it is one of the rare times I am fully focused on something, and all the other thoughts are gone.”
Lucia has a unique approach to preparing for a role. He says, “The repetition is where I learn the most about a role.” Early in the rehearsal process, he will record the cast reading through the script, and will listen to that audio over and over to help him learn his lines. “I start seeing a character come to life in my head as soon as I start reading the lines. Things may shift as I get deeper into the script, but typically that foundation my imagination creates from the start stays with me.” Lucia is not a big reader, so he likes to get on his feet and out of the script as soon as possible so he can begin the physical work and start interacting with his fellow actors.
While many would consider their acting role models to be famous thespians like Robin Williams or Patti LuPone, Lucia prefers to find his inspiration locally. “A lot of my colleagues at Smokestack are my role models. I did not go to school for theater, so I always say, I brought school to me. I have tried to surround myself with people who I consider being more knowledgeable of the craft and full of talent. James Anderson, Kris Dodds Williams, Rachel Timm, Olivia Richardson, Matt Doss. These are all trained well-versed theater performers, and I am thankful that I can soak up their knowledge.”
Lucia’s advice for anyone looking to get into acting is to simply “be a child.” “Watch younger children play sometime. They get so lost in their imaginations. They don’t care what’s happening around them. They are in whatever world they have in their mind. When you step on that stage, you are gone and replaced with your character. Become that character and leave yourself in the dressing room.”There are many events coming up at Smokestack where Lucia can be found. He will take on the role of Professor Plum in Clue. He is directing the summer youth production called Channeling Grimm and will also be directing and performing in Smokestack’s 21+ Improv Shows. Lucia shares, “I just hope I can keep up! The next few months are going to be full of a lot of laughter…the reason I got into performing to begin with.”