The Creative Life in Our Cities: A Conversation with Bradley Alonzo

We have many talented artists and creatives living and working in our Farmington/Farmington Hills community and our weekly interview series, sponsored by City Life Realty, will introduce you to some of them.

Today we feature writer and filmmaker Bradley M. Alonzo.

When did you first get started in the arts?

The first artistic memory I have was when I was nine years old. I had told my mother I liked writing, and she gifted me my first journal to write in. In high school, my love for writing shifted towards scriptwriting. Then, in college, I became very interested in filming the things that I wrote. At that point, I realized I loved telling cinematic stories. I’ve been focusing on that medium of storytelling ever since.

What kind of training did you have in filmmaking?

Other than attending film school at Grand Valley State University, I took a playwriting intensive at the Purple Rose Theatre Company in 2014. I did enjoy the experience of opening myself and my artistic process up to others in a class setting. The most memorable thing I have to say about my college filmmaking experience was an access to resources and equipment that allowed me to practice my craft in a way that helped me shape my own work. From the playwriting intensive, I most enjoyed workshopping my classmates’ scripts out loud and exploring how certain stakes could be tweaked to have more specific meaning within the story. It’s exciting to me to workshop a narrative structure, because each one is unique, with its own set of new possibilities.

Are you a member of any local or regional arts groups?

I am a member of the Farmington Community Arts Council, and I attend writing meetings during the annual National Novel Writing Month in November at the Farmington Hills Library.

Can you describe something you’ve created that is particularly meaningful to you?

My latest project, Harper, is a piece of work that I am particularly proud of. The story follows a stranded time traveler who is searching for her husband. This work means a lot to me both because of the story it tells, as well as the journey it took to tell it. Having been with the project for over two years, I learned a lot about producing on this magnitude that I am excited to apply to future projects.

Can you share a favorite quote about art or life?

Once I was shooting an interview at the University of Miami at the Frost School of Music with a professor/practicing musician. He talked about an interesting, universal intention behind practicing art—that your work is better if it is honest. That, in addition to growing and expanding your artistic means/voice/impact, it is important to continue practicing honesty as an artist and a person from moment to moment, conversation to conversation, etc. That way, when you go to practice your art, it becomes that much easier to be honest in your work.

Learn more about Bradley and his work here.

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