by Gina Scarpa
The Glee Project proved this week that you get only so many chances before the mentors start to lose faith. The Fearlessness challenge was the fourth time Charlie found himself fighting to stay in the competition. He constantly found himself in front of Ryan Murphy because the mentors found him tough to direct and more focused on friendships and a budding romance with fellow contestant Aylin that the competition itself. We talked to him today, following his elimination, to find out his thoughts on it and whether or not he was misunderstood.
Q. Gina, RealityWanted: What was your performance experience before doing The Glee Project?
A. Charlie: Before I booked the show, I've been performing consistently since the age of 5 but all in stage work and in classical work. I went to school for classical training and that includes Shakespeare, Chekhov, and my plans were to be on Broadway. I was living in New York, going to auditions, and I wasn't union yet. I was very rarely seen or considered. By the time I left, I was just starting to break the ice and people were beginning to say, "I know you. Didn't you audition a couple months ago?" All of a sudden, I got a pretty hefty career catapult by doing the show.
Q. Gina, RealityWanted: What made you decide to stop auditioning for theater and try out for a reality television show instead?
A. Charlie: Reality television is not a very credible thing nor is it a friendly environment for people in my position. The fame and the fortune have never really mattered to me. If I could emulate anybody's, it would be William H. Macy because I could be in everything, but nobody would really care. I watched the first season and I thought, out of all the competitive shows out there, it was the only one that did their absolute best to be positive about their contenders and their stories and making sure they were seen as human beings. I liked the show for what it stood for.
Q. Gina, RealityWanted: You were pegged as someone who could not be directed and yet, you've done theater your whole life. Do you feel like Ryan and the mentors misunderstood you?
A. Charlie: I definitely do have an opinion about my time on the show but what I would encourage you to do or anybody to do is go back and really take a second look at those moments. If you look at it through the lens of both me trying to incorporate the notes I was given in the bottom three and from the standpoint of being coachable, I think I turned out okay. The other thing that I take pride in was doing it for so long, I feel like Rocky Balboa in that I just kept getting hit week after week! What I was most proud of myself for was that I never got an attitude, I never got snippy. I would just always say, "Okay, I see your point. I'll try my best to learn from this and move forward."
Q. Gina, RealityWanted: You were pretty smitten with Aylin but do you think it affected your chances in the competition? What are your thoughts on it now?
A. Charlie: Well, here's the thing. I went into the competition saying that I wasn't there to win. If I did win, so much the better. It really was more about the experience of going through the show with these wonderful, beautiful people. Everyone was really a fantastic individual. I think I've always been a stupid romantic when it comes to stuff like that. I have no regrets about it. It was wonderful and it's strange. It was week 5, Adaptability Week, and we were heading to the reveal of the bottom three. I thought that I was going to be in the bottom but for different reasons than what they chose to give. I turned to Aylin and said I thought I'd be in the bottom three and she said, "Yeah, I think you will be." To me, that was the most attractive that she could get! I love the fact that she can point things out to me or validate what I thought I already knew. She was sassy but in a very grounded way. She's a wonderful person. Will we end up doing something long term?
Q. Gina, RealityWanted: Are you back in New York and auditioning for Broadway again?
A. Charlie: I'm actually living in Los Angeles now. I said in my earliest interviews that New York would always be my destination but I recently was looking at interviews with some of my idols, people who can navigate both - Hugh Jackman, Neil Patrick Harris... and I think I'm a versatile enough performer that I can make a career happen on both coasts. Not that it won't be difficult, but I think I can make it happen. If it were up to me, I'd be doing theater forever and getting paid the wage of tv actors .
The Glee Project airs Tuesdays at 10/9c on Oxygen.
(Image courtesy of Oxygen)
Follow Gina @ginascarpa