J. Avella Talks to
Actor Ron Tsur
Opposite Photo: Ron Tsur
Photo Credit: Chris Make
Ron Tsur is a very talented
actor, originally from Israel, and currently making
a name for himself in New York.
J. Avella: When did you first know you wanted
Since I can remember. Every family gathering became
a gig, every living room a stage.
FJA: You were an actor in the
IDF (Israeli Defense Forces). Describe that experience.
Three years of insanity. Israel has the only army
in the world that has an army theater (soldiers
that are drafted for the purpose of being actors
in the army), and I was lucky to be a part of it.
The thing I took away most from that experience
was being able to perform during the second Lebanese
war. You meet soldiers that you know have seen and
gone through horrible things, and for 60 minutes
you make them laugh. Priceless.
Was coming to New York City always you goal?
Not really. I have German citizenship, so Berlin
was a strong possibility, but one of my best friends
told me I have to give NYC a try, I would feel right
at home and this is the place to be. I came here
in 2009 to check out schools and once I got here
it was love at first sight.
What has been your experience working and living
in New York City and working in U.S theater?
Wonderfully hectic. Since graduating from school
(Stella Adler Studio Of Acting) in the summer, I
was a part of several productions, some small (a
German bar where I did an original piece with a
dear friend) and some big (a 3,000-seat theater
in NJ with a brilliant production that I am still
a part of). I think living in this city can be brutal
if you’re not good at dealing with rejection.
What always helped me was the fact that I don’t
have a Plan B. I’m an actor. That’s
What are the differences between working in the
theater here in NYC and in Israel?
The size of the industry, but mainly the fact that
it’s almost impossible to take your first
step towards a career in Israel. It’s very
difficult to even get an audition for a good part
there if you don’t have an agent, and here
you just need a head shot, a reel and an online
resume and you can submit yourself for dozens of
auditions every day. Other than that, I don’t
see much of a difference.
What do you love most about New York?
The Theater. Cliché answer, but there is
really nothing like going to a big Broadway show
one day and a black box in the East village the
next and not knowing which experience was better.
And Mexican food. Definitely, Mexican food.
Do you see living in NYC as an actor a challenge?
It’s not an easy life wherever you are. When
someone gets out of law school, they’re a
lawyer--same with doctors, teachers etc. But no
one really sees you as an actor in this city unless
you were on a Broadway stage or in a TV show. What
I usually do is find a project I’m truly passionate
about that I either worked on or is in development,
and bring that passion to the conversation. If you’re
excited about what you do, other people will be
too and that feeds you.
Who are your heroes?
What are you currently involved in?
The Office of Dead Letters, a brilliant
play by Heloise Wilson. Six quirky, clowny characters
bring dead letters back to life. Letters that may
have been lost at sea, burned by deviants, never
sent, only dreamt about or ripped apart all with
one thing in common: they never reached their intended.
We were accepted into The New York International
Fringe Festival (FringeNYC) and it’s being
produced by Little y Theatre Company and Rainsworth.
It’s a great opportunity and I’m pumped!
Also, I’m currently in the process of having
a play I wrote being given a reading. It’s
being produced by WIWU, a great production company
I've worked with before.
Where do you see yourself, ideally, ten years from
Honestly? In Book Of Mormon. Some people
dream of doing Shakespeare in the Park, but I would
love to be in that show. Best thing I’ve ever