• Stephanie O’Hanley

Beaconsfield native stars in web series ‘Monogamy’


PHOTO COURTESY TANYA KATCHOUNI

Beaconsfield native Tanya Katchouni fatefully fell into acting when an ‘Intro to Acting’ course was the only thing that fit into her schedule.

Now living in Los Angeles and playing Stacy Shaw in the web series Monogamy, acting wasn’t in Tanya Katchouni’s original plans.

Katchouni grew up in Beaconsfield, where she attended École primaire Beaconsfield and Beaconsfield High School. After graduating from John Abbott College, she headed to Concordia University, where she took an ‘Introduction to Acting’ class on a whim, because nothing else fit her schedule.

“At that point I thought I was going to do a minor in marketing, make a lot of money ...and then I got an ‘A’ in the acting class and a ‘C’ in the marketing class.

“When I took that class I had never felt anything like that before in my life,” Katchouni added. “I was doing things in that class that I would never do in my regular life. Stuff you’re uncomfortable with in your life, as an actor it was easy for me to express.”

Falling in love with acting, “was not what I planned on doing but it’s probably what I’m going to be doing for the rest of my life because once you start, you can’t really stop,” she says. “I recently completed the film ‘Dear Sister’ which should do very well on the Indie circuit, where I play one of the leads.”

Her advice to anyone pursuing a passion? “Even if you’re doing other things, you just keep doing what you absolutely love because that’s what makes a person happy.”

Soon after embracing acting, Katchouni was booking indie projects. Her TV debut involved a few episodes on the YTV children’s show Prank Patrol, where André Simoneau and his ninja assistants helped children pull pranks on unsuspecting victims. “I had a gymnastics background and they needed somebody to replace the female ninja from time to time.”

She moved to Toronto. “Pretty much as soon as I got there I booked a high school musical, the stage version of High School Musical 2.

“I had never sung in public before that,” Katchouni said. “I ended up doing an audition because they couldn’t find someone to play the lead...It was great until I lost my voice because I didn’t really know how to use my voice. I can sing and I can carry a tune but I’m not a trained singer. So I have a permanent raspy voice.”

Though she moved to Los Angeles in 2014 and is mainly based there, she’s currently auditioning in booming Vancouver. “It’s out of control the amount of stuff that’s filmed here,” Katchouni said. “I’ve been feeling the need to go back to Canada in the last few months and work in Canada, work with my friends who are still in Canada. It’s just a different energy than Los Angeles. As much as I love California, after a while it gets to you when every single person you encounter is in the industry, you want to just connect with real people and do things that are not just about that industry.”

Katchouni, who’s currently working on a film with a friend who lives in New York, says if she reaches a certain level, “if I have connections and money and all of that,” she’d like to be a producer and especially produce documentaries. “There are a lot of documentaries that need to be seen, they just need somebody to help them get them out there.

“Watch the show!” Katchouni says of Monogamy, which has Season Two episodes premiering on YouTube every Monday. While the first season asked whether a lifetime of sexual monogamy with one person is even possible for the show’s characters, the second season answers the question.

“I like the second season because it’s an ensemble cast. I’m one of the female leads but it kind of goes into all these different relationships which I find so interesting,” she said. “It’s all about being monogamous but they’re all dealing with different issues that I think people deal with in real life.”

Katchouni said her co-stars include actors who’ve appeared on The Tyler Perry Show, the Young and the Restless and Shameless. “It’s an amazing cast. No egos, everyone’s just there to have fun and to make this thing happen.”

To watch the first and second season online, consult www.monogamythewebseries.com/series.html

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