100 Creatives 2013: Sara Gaston, Stage and Screen Star

Categories: 100 Creatives

saragaston1.jpg
Photo provided by Sara Gaston
What She Does: You may or may not have seen much of Sara Gaston yet, but she has roles in more then ten films and web series that are scheduled to come out in the next two years. Some of them are very big local deals with the cream of Houston's film scene, such as Stephen Wolfe's heavily anticipated horror film Doll Factory and Josh Vargas' biopic on Houston's most notorious serial killer Dean Corll. In the latter, Gaston portrays Mary Henley, the mother of Corll's young accomplish Elmer Wayne Henley who helped Corll acquire at least 20 young boys to rape, torture, and murder.

Recently she just wrapped up a one-woman show at Main Street Theater about the life of Molly Ivins called Red Hot Patriot - The Kick-Ass Wit of Molly Ivins. Ivins was a legendary newspaper woman who made much of her name right here in Texas at the and the Fort Worth Star-Telegram where her column was syndicated to more than 400 papers. Gaston was thrilled to be able to bring Ivins' words to life on stage, words that continue to inspire people with their wit and honesty on subjects as diverse as breast cancer and war.

For those in Houston that would like to learn the acting trade, she also offers coaching sessions locally.

Why She Likes It: "I love that I get to do research - I'm a scholar at heart. I also love that I get to live someone else's life for a while. When you're a kid, you say things like 'I want to be a princess,' 'I want to be an astronaut.' When you're an actor, you have a chance to do all those things. I like to do research about things like occupation or socio-economic class, to name a few. That helps me understand where a character's choices come from."

What Inspires Her: Gaston gets a kick out of actors and actresses who are willing to take risks and be ugly and vulnerable. Meryl Streep and Anthony Hopkins are two big influences, as well as Daniel Day-Lewis. In addition to her research on individual characters, she thrives on art and literature. Nature is a definite recharge for her that allows her to find herself.

More than anything else, Gaston finds inspiration in tales of human heroism, such as that of Rachel Beckwith who wanted to raise $300 by her ninth birthday to help bring clean water to people in poor countries. "I want to be that," said Gaston.

If Not Here, Then Where: "Probably Chicago or New York... but LA's where the film is and I love film so it's a tough call."

If Not This, Then What: Nature lover that she is, Gaston could picture herself being a forest ranger if she wasn't acting. Her penchant for reading and research also lends itself to being a professor of literature. Still, it doesn't look like she's going to quit acting for the woods or academia anytime soon.

What's Next: Gaston has a role in Carlos Tovar's superhero web series More Than Human, which recently cleared its Kickstarter goal for a second season. Look for her in several of Joe Grisaffi's upcoming films like Lars the Emo Kid and Conjoined, where she plays her recurring role Detective Waters. "I love Detective Waters - she's tough, she's smart, she's funny... I'll keep her going as long as folks write parts for her," said Gaston.

More Creatives for 2013
(In order of most recently published; click here for the full page).

Rachael Pavlik, a writer mom
Ana Villaronga-Roman, Katy Contemporary Arts Museum director

Erin Wasmund, actor, singer and dancer
Karim Al-Zand, composer
Jan Burandt, paper conservator for The Menil Collection
Deke Anderson, actor

Craig Cohen, hockey fan and host of Houston Matters
Mauro Luna, Poe-Inspired photographer
Trond Saeverud, Galveston Symphony Orchestra music director and conductor
Khrystyna Balushka, paper flower child
Christina Carfora, visual artist and world traveler
Sara Kumar, artistic director for Shunya Theatre
Kiki Maroon, burlesque clown
Gin Martini, fashion designer
Lacey Crawford, painter and sculptor
Homer Starkey, novelist
Jenn Fox, mixed media Shohei Iwahama, dancer
Erica DelGardo, metalsmith
Bob Clark, executive director Houston Family Arts Center
Kerrelyn Sparks, bestselling romance author

Lindsay Halpin, punk rock mad hatter
Drake Simpson, actor
Shelby Carter, Playboy model turned photographer
David Matranga, actor
Crystal Belcher, pole dancer
Daniel Kramer, photographer
Blue 130, pin-up explosion art

Nina Godiwalla, author and TED speaker
David Wilhem, light painter
Tom Abrahams, author and newscaster
Browncoat, pin-up pop artist
Kris Becker, Nu-Classical composer and pianist
Vincent Fink, science fashion
Stephanie Saint Sanchez, Senorita Cinema founder
Ned Gayle, thrift store painting defacer

Sameera Faridi, fashion designer
Greg Ruhe, The Human Puppet

Sophia L. Torres, founder and co-artistic director of Psophonia Dance Company
Maggie Lasher, dance professor and artistic director
Jordan Jaffe, founder of Black Lab Theatre
Outspoken Bean, performance poet
Barry Moore, architect
Josh Montoute, mobile gaming specialist
Ty Doran, young actor
Gwen Zepeda, Houston's first Poet Laureate
Joseph Walsh, principal dancer at Houston Ballet
Justin Garcia, artist
Buck Ross, dilettante and director of Moores Opera Center
Patrick Renner, sculptor of the abstract and the esoteric
Tomas Glass, abstract artist and True Blood musician
Ashley Stoker, painter, photographer and Tumblr muse
Amy Llanes, artistic airector of Rednerrus Feil Dance Company
Bevin Bering Dubrowski, executive director at the Houston Center for Photography

Lydia Hance, founder and director of Frame Dance Productions
Piyali Sen Dasgupta, mixed media artist and nature lover
Dean James, New York Times bestselling mystery novelist
Nicola Parente, abstract painter and photographer

Cheryl Schulke, handmade leather pursemaker
Anthony Rathbun, Alternative Lifestyle Photographer
David Salinas, computer-less analog photographer

Danielle Burns, art curator
Alicia DiRago, Whimseybox founder

Katia Zavistovski, contemporary art curator

Ashley Horn, choreographer, filmmaker
Amanda Stevens, scary book author
Peter Lucas, film and video curator, music lover and self-described culture-slinger

Ana María Otamendi, collaborative pianist and vocal coach

Billy D. Washington, comedian
Michele Brangwen, choreographer and dancer

Kristin Warren, actress and choreographer

Kelly Sears, animator and film maker
Colton Berry, Bayou City Theatrics' artistic director

jhon r. stronks,dance-maker
Joe Grisaffi, actor, director, writer, cinematographer


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