Fall arts preview: Anton Lipovetsky muses on happy accidents

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At 22, Anton Lipovetsky is a very successful actor. He is also very surprised.

Chatting with the Straight in the South Granville condo he shares with his engineer dad, Lipovetsky, who is currently appearing at Bard on the Beach as Lucentio in The Taming of the Shrew and Malcolm in Macbeth, explains: “I never thought that I would be acting this much. In high school, I was really interested in theatre—directing especially. I had visions for things; I wanted to create that way, from the outside. And I thought maybe the best way to learn how to do that would be to go through acting school. And now here I am. I kind of feel like, ‘Whoops! I’m at Bard on the Beach.’ ”

The accidental actor is racking up awards. He took this year’s Jessie for most promising newcomer, his compositions for his solo musical, FLOP!, earned him a Jessie nomination, and he snagged a 2011 Vancouver Mayor’s Arts Award as an emerging artist.

And he isn’t just winning awards. Since Lipovetsky graduated from Studio 58 in April 2011, he’s also been getting steady work. Before he finishes his Bard marathon, he’ll start rehearsals for Yvette Nolan’s post-apocalyptic The Unplugging, a three-hander that will run at the Arts Club’s Revue Stage from October 17 to November 3. And in the new year, he’ll be playing multiple roles in My Funny Valentine, Dave Deveau’s solo show about the 2008 murder of gay teenager Lawrence King (at the Firehall Arts Centre from February 20, 2013, to March 2, 2013). At the same time, he’ll be rehearsing for Andy Thompson’s Broken Sex Doll (running March 13, 2013, to March 24, 2013, at the Cultch). Lest anyone think he’s slacking off, he’s also writing the score for Sex Doll, which he describes as “a futuristic sex-comedy musical. Another one of those.”

Music, it turns out, was Lipovetsky’s first love. “As a kid, I wrote songs and I played in a rock band,” he reveals. At 11, he penned the lyrics for the tune that got the local band Dust its first airplay. “I don’t even know how I knew about this,” he says, “but I wrote an entire song about a gold digger, like a hot lady. The song still gets quoted among people I know: ‘She’s a fire-breathing dragon in her red silk dress.’ Yep. Eleven.”

With all of the recognition he’s getting, he feels like a bit of a fraud, “and there are so many people, like my friends from Studio, who are just as deserving.” He admits that the attention he’s getting comes with uncomfortably high expectations. “But I can’t complain. I really can’t,” he says. “It’s so exciting that I get to do this stuff. And I really want to do it all.”

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