Janel Tanna Is More Than A Pretty Face

Shot by Krisd Mauga
Makeup by Crystal Nardico

Growing up did you always know you would get into acting?
I always had a creative side, and would put on small performances for family members. I would also frequently make home video type short films with my neighbors next door for fun. I would always play the lead or some story we would make up together. There were usually 3-4 of us kids. However I did not formally get into acting until I was an adult even though it was always something I regretted not being able to go into as I followed initially a more traditional course of education in the biomedical sciences. That is the thing about life though, I think most people have several different paths they can potentially take.


Did you take classes to enhance your skills?
Yes. I trained at the Lee Strasberg Institute which focuses on Method Acting. I also did one year of small group Meisner technique at the Neighborhood Playhouse with James Brill. When preparing for a character I often would visit with Carl Ford of Susan Batson Studios.

Who is your favorite actor?
I have several. I always enjoy watching Daniel Day Lewis in acting or Cate Blanchett. I also really like Kathy Bates.

Do you have a favorite role?
I think thus far my most challenging role has been in Sienna’s Choice, a film I created with an amazing group of people by my side, such as director Linda Palmer. Sienna deteriorates both mentally and physically, so it was an intense place to be mentally. Also, being truthful with the decline took a lot of focus while on set. She was also a dancer who started to exhibit subtle symptoms of multiple organ lesions (without giving too much away of the plot, since we are still on the film festival circuit) early in the film which progressed over the duration of the film and story.

Did you grow up with a large family?
What do you do in your free time? I try to workout, spend time with my two fur children, go to a museum or show.

What’s the biggest city you’ve been to?
It is open to debate, but I live in NYC and have been to London.

What’s your most favorite city to visit?
I absolutely adore Paris. The architecture, the culture, food, everything.

What country do you have on your list to go to before you die?
There are several. I actually wanted to be an archeologist as a small child and was fascinated with potentially visiting Egypt and exploring the pyramids. I would like to go to Eastern Europe soon.

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© Alwayz Therro