Theatre Arts

Pua Perry “We have so many people from other countries here. We’ve really got a complete kaleidoscope at SMC.”

She was born on the Hawaiian island of Maui, perhaps the most beautiful island of them all, and she explains the origins of her name. “I was first given the English name of ‘Peony,’ which is ‘queen of the flowers.’ Then that became the Hawaiian name ‘Puahone,’ which got shortened to just ‘Pua.’ ” Pua Perry is a child of the islands and remembers that “I loved growing up there because it’s all very beautiful. And hardly any crime. Not much to do,” she continues, “but there’s certainly a lot of active stuff to get involved with.”

The old joke asks the question: Where do you go for vacations when you live on Hawaii? For Pua, a veteran surfer, her ‘vacation’ from things Hawaiian began when she was surfing… the Internet. “I was online looking at different colleges when I came across SMC. And the website was very helpful and informative. So when I came to the area to visit schools, I found that Santa Monica was the best area. And SMC was the best school.”

Pua is now studying Theatre Arts and—at night—Drawing II and Speech. Of her experience ‘treading the boards,’ she reports, “I love the theater and performing in front of people. And I love studying characters and people’s lives, and bringing it all to life on the stage.” She states with enthusiasm, “My Acting I class with Tom Geha was completely fun, intense, and excellent. It went by very quickly, and everybody loved it. Now I’m in Acting II with Terrin Adair-Lynch, who has a different style but is excellent as well. But all the theatre classes at SMC are based on the Stanislavsky method. I haven’t had the time to try out for any plays at SMC yet,” she adds. “But I’m determined to make good use of what I’m learning here.” Just remember what Stanislavsky said, Pua: “An actor prepares.”

Read more stories from present and past years in the SMC Student Spotlight Archive.