Acting Distant On The Suncoast
When a lifelong vision becomes a reality, it’s a big deal. When it happens during a pandemic, then it’s a REALLY big deal. Just ask my incredibly talented friend, actor/writer/producer Carrie McQueen.
Born and raised in Canada, Carrie has always been a force to be reconned with. She fell in love with acting when she was a kid in a production of Annie. There was no question she would attend theater school. After graduating she toured Canada and Northern Alberta. With a varied and diverse acting background, Carrie has performed on the stage and in several theater troupes. She has done films, commercials and television. She made her way to the states and took several bites out of the Big Apple where she honed her acting chops at The American Musical & Dramatic Academy. New York City proved to be chock full of opportunities which included joining a comedy troupe where she wrote, produced and starred in an off-Broadway sitcom showcase for MTV. She spent some time out in L.A. working in the industry, but found herself back in New York where yet another opportunity presented itself.
This time it was in the form of a lifelong commitment when she met her future husband.
Carrie married Larry married (yes, I went there), and they started a family. They traded their hectic city life and moved to Florida. Now a family of four, Carrie took a break from acting to concentrate on her family.
I became friendly with Carrie when she invited me to take Barre3 exercise classes she was teaching in Lakewood Ranch. It didn’t take long before I became a fan of both!
As an entertainer myself, I can attest to the fact that the desire to perform can be suppressed for only so long. For Carrie, it was no secret how much she missed that part of her life. As the kids got older and became self-sufficient and with the support of her awesome husband (he did not ask me to say that), Carrie was able to get back into performing. It wasn’t long before she was in demand in the Sarasota theater community.
I’ve had many opportunities to see her and I will tell you that she is the real deal. Her talent is undeniable. She sunk her teeth into many roles, most notably the Players Center for Performing Arts production of the critically acclaimed one-woman show “Blown Sideways Through Life”. She was in several other productions and had a starring role in 12 Angry Jurors when COVID happened and everything shut down.
Everything that is, except the creative mind of Carrie McQueen!
Seizing an opportunity to use the internet as a connection vehicle, Carrie created a virtual platform and Acting Distant was born. An online network of creative people to share ideas, do live readings and workshop became a lifeline for performers to perform from the comfort of their home!
As the world starts to return to some semblance of normalcy, Carrie has found herself going through a metamorphosis of her own. Wearing many hats, she is now the CEO and creative force of a new business. What began as a way to help other performers to continue doing what they love during the time when the stages were empty, has now grown into a full-blown theater troupe. Carrie has assembled a plethora of talented and experienced professionals in the industry who bring excitement that almost matches hers. Almost. It’s hard for her to contain her own excitement when she talks about her venture. And rightfully so. In a world where uncertainty has been the mainstay, Carrie proved that perseverance and passion for what you love can lead to making a dream a reality. She took a little idea and made it come to fruition. Knowing her as I do, I see first-hand how this butterfly has come out of her cocoon. I’m not alone when I say that I am so excited to see what this next chapter brings for Carrie. Acting Distant is turning into what is true testament to never giving up on a dream and instilling hope in a world where that is a challenge.
As of this writing, Carrie and her team are in pre-production and will debut an all-out Halloween theater experience slated for late October. Full disclosure, I’ll be the musical guest!
For more information and tickets HERE.
Photos by Sheri Nadelman