A Jericho4Kids Interview

with Shoshannah Stern.

Shoshannah plays Bonnie Richmond on Jericho!  She is an awesome actress and person and I am thankful that she took the time to do this interview! 
Thank you Shoshannah, you are the best!!

~Shelby~

What was your favorite color when you were a kid? What is your favorite color now?

My favorite color was yellow.  Right now I think my favorite color is gray.

What is your favorite animal?

Dogs and gorillas.
 
Do you have any pets?

Yes, I have a Chihuahua and Jack Russell mix named Puck and a black and white cat named Ekaterina Gordeeva.

I love to play soccer! Did you do a lot of sports when you were a kid?

Yes!  I was like you, I played soccer for twelve years!  I loved it!

Did you like to play outside when you were a kid, I know I do!!?

Yes I loved to play outside with my brother and my sister.  I would make games up like Oregon Trail.  We would get all our dolls and stuffed animals and put them in a wagon and pretend we were on the trail!  I am glad you like to play outside too! 
 
What did you want to be when you were a kid?

I have always wanted to be an actor since I could tell people what I wanted to be.

Did you go to college?

Yes, I did.  You're going too, right?
 
If you did, what was your favorite subject?

I loved English.  That was my major.  I loved Literature.  I also loved World Civilization.
 
I hope it is okay to ask some personal questions about what it is like being deaf.  I think a lot of kids would understand better if they heard it from someone who lives a successful life and doesn't let a disability stop her.  I know that you inspire me!!  If these questions are tooooo personal please ignore them :-)

There is no such thing!  I am always more than happy to answer questions.  I don't believe you would ask an inappropriate question so I will answer them all.
 
Were you deaf when you were a kid?

Yes, I was born deaf.  I am fourth generation deaf.

Can you hear other people? (even a little)

Yes, I can.  I have a hearing aid and with it I can hear a lot.  I just have trouble recognizing words and localizing sound.  It's like if you don't know Spanish and you are listening to a song in Spanish.  You can hear the words but you can't recognize them.  That's what it is like for me.

Is it hard for you to know what the other people are saying?

Sometimes.  It depends.  Some people I can understand with no problem one on one and with others I can't understand them at all.  In group situations it's always difficult but I have learned how to cope with that.
 
Is it hard for you to communicate with other people who cannot use their hands to respond?

It depends on the person.  Most of the time I am fine with one on one conversations.  I have friends who don't sign and we understand each other just fine.

How would you know if there is a fire in your house?

The fire alarms are loud enough that I could hear them even without my hearing aid.  My parents have fire alarms with a strobe light.

Can you tell me a little bit about what it is like being deaf and how you live a very normal life anyways?

I don't really know what it is like to be deaf.  I only know what it is like to be me.  I don't see myself as disabled or handicapped.  I think that is why other people don't see me that way.  I don't make my deafness anybody's problem.  It helps that I grew up in a deaf family so I never felt different.  I always felt very normal.
 
I read that you participated in a story telling event, which is very kcool!  I love to read!!  What was that experience like?

I love to read too.  I have been involved with storytelling for almost six years now.  I try to get deaf children to love to read too.  ASL and English are very different so I try to combine the two so they learn new words in English and ask questions about the story so they read more on their own.  It is so important.
 
What inspired you to start acting? How old were you when you started acting?

I just always knew I wanted to act.  I was always putting on plays when I was little.  I did theater in school from elementary school throughout college and then I started professionally when I was 21.
 
What is your favorite thing about acting?

You learn so many different things and it's such a new experience each time.  You get to meet so many different people and learn so much about yourself and others.

What was your first acting job?

It was on a show on the WB called Off Centre.  It's not on the air anymore.

In my research, I have found that you have been in several movies and television shows, which one, beside Jericho of course :-) was your favorite role and why?

They are all special to me in different ways.  I can't pick just one!  They are all so unique.
 
How did you get the part of Bonnie on Jericho?  I read that it was not planned for her to be deaf but that changed when you came along? :-) Very kcool!!

That is true.  But the story is really not very interesting, at least from where I am standing.  I went in to audition and they just decided that was the touch they were looking for and they told me they had rewritten the character for me.  That was amazing but I just auditioned like everyone else.  I was just lucky enough they decided to take a chance on me!
 

What do you like most about playing Bonnie on Jericho?  Are you anything like Bonnie?

I love that she gets a chance to grow up with the show.  There are some similarities between me and Bonnie.  She is very loyal and she loves her family and she can be stubborn!  But she also has a very small life.  My life was bigger than that.

What scene that you were in was your favorite on Jericho?

I loved the scene when me and Brad signed without any voicing in Vox Populi.  It felt so intimate and real.
 
What cast member makes you laugh the most?

Definitely Brad, he is one of the funniest people ever.

What is your favorite thing about being a part of Jericho?

Coming to work with all the wonderful people in the cast and crew.
 
I ask everyone this question.  What makes Jericho a family show?

The family dynamics are at the heart of the show and it's what makes Jericho fight for everything.  There is a deep love and loyalty people have for their families on the show and that's what makes Jericho so special.
 

Were you surprised when the fans came to save the show?

Yes I was.

What can you tell me about Bonnie in season two?

She really grows up and takes control of her own life and starts to discover what she wants to do with it.  

I have a few fan questions that come directly from the fans.

1. What is your opinion of Bonnie's boyfriend. Would
that be the type of person you would date, or would you date someone more like Stanley?

I think he would be the kind of boy I would have a crush on in high school.  He would be the kind of boy I would admire from afar.  But if I really talked to him and got to know him there would be no way I would ever date him!  I would definitely like someone like Stanley better if he wasn't my brother.  I like people that make me laugh!

2. Is there any Bond between Dale and Bonnie. The Dale
Turner Myspace page seems to hint at some sort of
bond. And if there was has that been eroded any since
Dale has obviously gone threw some drastic changes. 

I always thought so at the beginning.  I always thought the relationship between them would be explored but I think they decided to go another way.  I thought Dale and Bonnie were always close friends and understood each other in a special way.  But there hasn't been anything written to justify that. 

3. Do you like sports if so which ones.

Yes I do.  I enjoy them in general but my favorite one is soccer.

4. Are you working on any other TV or movies, or are
their any plans to do anything other than Jericho in
the near future.

Yes I'm going to be on Cold Case.  I also finished a movie that premiered at Sundance called Adventures of Power.  I also did a Hallmark movie called Sweet Nothing in My Ear.

Thank you for doing this interview with me! I love Bonnie and think that you are an inspiration to all kids because you prove that a person can do anything they want in life!!

Thank you so much!  You are inspirational as well!

Thanks again so much!!

~Shelby~