By Cortez Cruz Serrato
Former East Los Angeles College theatre actress Alexandra Ximenez has moved on to attend the London Academy of Music and Dramatic Arts, in London. Currently, she is in London and has started her studies abroad.
Last year, Ximenez became encouraged by her friend and mentor Rich Moore, the director of “Wreck It Ralph,” to take her talents to the next level by applying to art schools. She decided to apply to two schools, California Institute of the Arts and the London Academy of Music and Dramatic Art.
“I applied to these schools because I wanted take my performing to a higher level. I wanted to have a foundation. I acted heavily on instinct but wanted to build a greater foundation and improve my overall technique.” Ximenez said.
Ximenez was accepted into the London Academy of Dramatic Arts this past Spring and she moved to London to start school at LADMA last week.
Ximenez is entering a three-year program at LADMA in hope of earning a bachelors degree in professional acting.
It was not until her junior year when Ximenez began to take performing seriously again and auditioned for the Garfield High School and East Los Angeles College’s joint production of “Zoot Suits.”
She was originally cast to be a dancer, but she then decided to audition for her first speaking role and she got the part of “Lupe” in the production.
This proved to be the jumping off point for Ximenez as she became fully involved with ELAC’s theatre department after the production.
“I was the only high school student at Garfield that stuck around at ELAC’s theatre department. I had met so many friends during the Zoot Suit production, they even ended up being some of my best friends today,” Ximenez said.
Ximenez became first involved with East Los Angeles College’s theatre department in 2007 when she was still a junior at Garfield High School. Since leaving ELAC in 2010 she has been working for the Company of Angels Theatre Department.
Ximenez’ infatuation with performing started at a very young age and her curiosity with acting, singing, and dancing withstood since no one in her family had experience with performing to lead her into that specific path.
Ximenez attributes watching “Gone With The Wind” with her mother at a young age for fueling her desire to be a performer. It was from then on that she showed a great curiosity for music, acting, and performing in front of an audience.
“I cannot really understand why I would get worked up watching the movie (Gone With The Wind). I would feel frustration in seeing the actors perform because I too wanted to perform. I would always try to see beyond the story,” Ximenez said.
Though her infatuation with performing was still very much with her, it was not until she was 12 that Ximenez would get her first opportunity to perform on stage in an actual full-length production. Her middle school, Belvedere Middle School, casted her to play a part in the musical “A Christmas Carol.”
As Ximenez entered Garfield High School in the fall of 2005 she lost interest in being on stage and instead began to focus her attention on athletics.
She was an active member in both cross country and softball at Garfield. Along with playing sports at Garfield she also was a Folklorio, Swing and Salsa dancing.
After graduating from Garfield in the spring of 2009 Ximenez decided to tryout for UCLA’s theatre department but was unsuccessful in gaining admittance.
“I was in awe of the talent that went to audition, people from all over the world came and I was really intimidated. I knew I had a lot of raw talent but I was no where near as ready as some of the people who showed up at UCLA.”
After being rejected from UCLA Ximenez came back and enrolled at ELAC and became a large part of the theatre department. She went to star in multiple productions like Romeo and Juliet and The Day They Shot John Lennon.
After leaving ELAC, Ximenez was hired by and became a member of the Company of Angels Theatre Department in Los Angeles. She was hired to assist productions backstage but still had an itch to perform professionally.
“I love every aspect of theatre, backstage included but i did not want to get stuck there. I still really wanted to perform,” Ximenez said.
Her first time on stage as a professional was for and original production called “Blu.” She was casted in a large role in the play and the play went on to receive great reviews.
As Ximenez went on to perform in more Company of Angels productions, she also began to direct her own projects. Her first directed piece was a puppet show entitled, “Traffic Jam.”