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Casey Dolkas: Jack of All Entertainment Trades

Casey Dolkas: Jack of All Entertainment Trades

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Born and raised in Southern California, Dolkas, as a toddler, was mesmerized by the TV, shouting at it, “I want that.”

His parents couldn’t quite understand what their young son was trying to communicate until they realized he meant that he wanted to be in the TV – acting, dancing, and ultimately entertaining. After finding his first casting through an ad in one of his sister’s magazines and begging his parents to drive him to countless auditions, Dolkas began working as an actor at a very young age. Several years later, he is now fully fledged into the entertainment industry as an actor, producer, and most importantly as Executive Director at NeueHouse, a creative members space in New York and Los Angeles. Best known for his role as George Michael in ‘The Price of Fame’ (2019), Dolkas has a handful of new, exciting ventures in the works.
He began his training at USC School of Dramatic Arts & their School of Cinematic Arts, where he majored in acting and minored in the Business of Television. After graduating he decided to expand his experience by heading to Europe where he enrolled in a theater program at Oxford University where he pursued classical theater training and Shakespeare.

“Speaking that language all the time you kind of pick it up. I’d be very rusty now speaking Shakespearean, but that whole experience is something I very much take pride in and talk about throughout the rest of my career.”

On concluding his UK studies, he returned to California where he was offered a job on the Paramount lot where he had interned during his years at USC. Surprisingly he turned that offer down, both because of his classical training and because he wanted to focus solely on serious acting. He describes this event as a “coming of age moment” because as much as he wanted to pursue acting, he also needed to get a job to support himself.
“I became a bit of an event producer where we would produce large screenings and premieres and galas.

Regarding his work at NeueHouse:
I safely brought events back in a pandemic world. This includes events such as: Netflix “The Crown” Netflix “Bridgerton” Netflix premiere of “He’s All That”… A24 “Zola” … HBO “Succession” FX “Reservation Dogs” premiere, as well as Hulu, Disney, Amazon. In addition, I launched a rooftop live music series at NeueHouse with performances by Moby, Arlo Parks, Gabrielle Current, Raissa, Syd B. I am also opening our DTLA location in the iconic Bradbury Building, and later Venice Beach.”

Hollywood is geared towards members being invited to collaborate and connect, whether as entrepreneur, screenwriter or graphic designer. The Hollywood location is a hundred-thousand square foot historical building, boasting event spaces which include screening rooms, soundstages, and rooftops. Here, utilizing the outdoor spaces for events and premieres for clients such as Netflix, Amazon, HBO, Disney, Hulu, and others. Dolkas has also launched a rooftop live music and screening series, for which he curates talent and titles.

“I basically get an idea and I execute it. I love connecting people and introducing people and it’s still in the entertainment industry. I’ve taken this other opportunity to take knowledge from the business side of the industry and merge it with the creative because that is something I still love with the storytelling and the character development.”

Aside from his acting career and event producing at NeueHouse, Dolkas has now entered the avenue of film and series production. Currently, he is in the process of seeking financing for a feature film with a psychological thriller screenplay. He describes it as an amazing, twisted, dark screenplay which he’s currently shopping around. He said:“We’ve had some amazing traction; it’s been an amazing learning opportunity and something I’m so excited to do.”

Reflecting on his diverse and action-packed career he regards his role as George Michael in ‘The Price of Fame’ (2019) as an honor as well as a significant highlight.

“It was so exciting to play a real character that was so beloved, talented, and has this amazing legacy.”

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The role involved many hair, make-up, and wardrobe changes. He was particularly advised to play George Michael’s tapes while driving around Los Angeles, repeating them out loud in order to master the British dialect.
“There were specific videos I found on YouTube where he was in interviews speaking. We’re lucky to have so many platforms, just listening to people talk about him, even philanthropically just what type of person he was, I just took all that in and hopefully embodied that.” Next you can see Casey in the romantic dramedy ‘The Nature of Romance,’ out next year.

In addition to his many entertainment business pursuits, Dolkas was asked to be a mentor at the USC School of Dramatic Arts. Because he was on grants and scholarships as a student there, he was happy to accept.

“I owe so much to them. Anything I can give back I want to do. To be able to speak with a student who’s a junior or a senior who has fears about stepping out into the real world and into the industry he points out: I’m still growing and learning myself. In this industry we need to support each other and lift each other up because you never know when it’s gonna come back around.”

Dolkas has this advice to anyone at any age who wants to get involved in the entertainment industry: “Number one, you have to genuinely love it and absolutely know that’s what you want to do because it’s not easy. There’s not just one way to go about it.”

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