Please introduce yourself, what you do, why you do it, and what you want people to know about you.
I’m Chester Pollard. I’m an artist from New York, NY, and I mostly focus on acting, directing, and writing. My main interest is to encourage audiences to live life at its fullest through my productions. I also like to play guitar and write songs. I can draw, but not professionally. Just for birthday cards.
What qualities makes you different and unique from everyone else in the industry?
While some actors have a type, others are much better at playing all kinds of different characters. I’m definitely the latter. I’ve played jocks, geeks, stoners, executives, villains, dwarves, husbands, and animals because it gives me variety and an understanding of how all of their brains work.
I rely less on popular trends and trying to be new, and focus on what I think is good.
I’m a massive fan of British culture. My friends will note how much I love British comedy, British bands, and even my haircut looks British.
I grew up in the 2000s, so I have lots of kids’ films and TV shows on my radar, as well as a love for classic cinema. All of that plays a part in my craft.
Mixing all your unique inspirations together and adding your background really makes you a specific type of performer.
Describe THAT moment when you realized you wanted to do what you do now. Who did you tell first? What has it been like since that moment?
When I was 10, I was doing a kids acting class and the play we did was Snow White and the Six Dwarves (we didn’t have enough people in the cast). I was playing Grumpy and even though this wasn’t my first play, something about this felt more than fun. While rehearsals were happening, I was introduced to Monty Python and I found it so funny, despite not getting the references, that I had to do what they were doing.
The boy who played Dopey was my best friend at the time and we would always reference Python sketches in our downtime. And because of that, 10-year-old me approached the role of Grumpy as a cross between John Cleese and Josh Peck.
I don’t recall telling anyone that I wanted to do this, but now it became clear that I was a performer at a young age and my parents just had to get on board with it.
What has been the biggest challenge you’ve had to face and how did you overcome it?
When I started college, I realized that I was not as good at performing and writing as I thought I was. I left high school thinking I was on top of the world to then be told by professors and students alike that I was completely wrong.
I just had that whole freshman year to suffer before I finally understood some better techniques. I’m still learning but I found that the process since that one year itch has helped me improve.
If you had to pick the TOP 3 people you’d want to meet that could take your career (or business) to the next level…who would those 3 people be?
Lorne Michaels because SNL has been a dream of mine since I was in middle school. Wes Anderson is a great director that makes films I want to be in. I suppose someone like Rick Rubin if I wanted to get my music career going.