My crushes are unpredictable: one day the glistening ebony man on the adjacent elliptical, the next that dreadlocked checkout hobbit at Whole Foods. So when comedian Sarah King wrote to nominate a crush, I was intrigued but trepidatious. Also vaguely nauseated, but only because I was eating some yogurt I thought might have expired. Having a crush selected for me felt like being set up on a blind date, so like anyone in my position, I googled.
Turns out King isn’t just some yenta trying to tell me how to live my life, she’s Fate’s noble messenger. Her nominee, it seems, is no stranger. Unbeknownst to me, I’d seen her perform, even felt those familiar stirrings. At the time, however, my Rolodex of crushes fairly burst and I didn’t feel I could offer a new crush the attention and disquieting stares for which I’m known. But now, with King’s prodding, I’m ready to unveil actor/writer/producer Kate Lane, April’s Chicago Crush.
Name: Kate Lane
Hometown: Lexington, MA. Suburban, liberal, [home of the] "accidental" gunshot that started the whole American independence thing.
Profession: Actor. And on Friday and Saturday nights you can find me popping bottles at Excalibur.
Hobbies: I like to guess peoples astrological signs. If you're reading this, you're probably a Cancer or an Aries. Or a Gemini because those people are cray-cray.
Our Town Why acting?
Kate Lane My grandmother got me and my two sisters involved in acting when we were very young, not in the “Toddlers and Tiaras” kinda way, but in the performing Albee's “Three Tall Woman” in a barn in your grandmother's period dresses way. I can't not do it.
OT Other than that, what's your training?
KL Interlochen Arts Camp, Vassar's summer program for actors, and when I was seventeen, I walked into Richard Foreman's notorious Ontological Hysteric Theatre, [in New York City], asked if I could sweep floors for the summer, and ended up getting this amazing internship. Then I went to the conservatory at DePaul, which is basically like getting a degree in mind f***s. It was a wonderful experience.
OT You're an out actor. Any concerns?
KL It's not exactly in my best interest to be out as an ingénue, but a couple months ago, I [experienced] a life-changing event, involving a girl flying in from L.A. to sabotage my life and make me fall in love with her. She's a comedian, and together we sorta came out professionally, mainly because it was too big a love to [lie] about. [Since then], I’ve missed out on roles I would have been auditioning for. As one industry person put it, "we don't want you to be that lesbian girl,” but that doesn't much make sense to me. What if a guy only loved his wife, would he not be able to play Romeo with another actress? If you don't think I can play Juliet because I'm dating a girl, you don't understand a thing about what actors do.
OT You've recently produced, written and starred in a film. What was that like?
KL I wrote “redBLUE” when I was eighteen. [Director] Brittani Smith and I produced it in 2009. After over a year of editing we are finally done and I have never been more proud of anything in my life. The process of making a film, from your first fantasies to seeing it on screen is unforgettable.
OT Describe your perfect day.
KL Up with the sunrise. My eagle-pony brings me breakfast and then we go brush my hair. The sunshine outdoors is calling, so out the door. Hey, why do these really comfy clothes look super amazing today, right?? [Trips and falls into some beautiful, androgynous thing. He/she looks deeply into my eyes. "Sorry, I'm TAKEN!"]. Wave to strangers who wave back, while some young child in goth clothes hands me a balloon and gives the finger to a man in a business suit. Then [after] a full day on some meaty film, lo and behold, my girlfriend has flown in from L.A. Oh, and maybe my mom is there. Hi mom!
OT Relationship Deal breaker.
KL You lie to me in the not-surprise-party kind of way.
OT Who was your first crush?
KL Mike Busa. In fifth grade, when I still thought I was a boy, we were the first couple in our class. Everyone formed a creepy circle around us at the dance and yelled stuff like "kiss!" and "touch her butt!"
OT Why are you crushworthy?
KL Because I'm not made of steal or silk…get it? Well, who needs you anyway?
OT Any questions for me?
KL Just because we're holding hands doesn't mean I'm "with" you, right?
To learn more about Kate Lane visit her website. Lord knows I have.
A freelance writer with an MFA in Creative Writing from The School of the Art Institute of Chicago, Sarah Terez Rosenblum, when not writing, supports herself as a figure model, Spinning instructor and teacher at Chicago's Story Studio. Inevitably one day she will find herself lecturing naked on a spinning bike. She’s kind of looking forward to it actually. IMPORTANT: the official Our Town site doesn't support comments. Join in the conversation by followingOur Town on Facebook and Sarah on Twitter: @SarahTerez