Donn Swaby Talks Reuniting with Fellow Passions Alums on His Latest Project and Much More! (EXCLUSIVE)

Donn Swaby Talks His Latest Project, Reuniting with Passion Alums, and much more! Check it out here ---->>>





Last year we got the opportunity to chat with Donn Swaby about a project that is dear to his heart, Orpheus Star. In the article, which you can read here, Swaby told us about the amazing story of Douglas Privett and the many influences that contributed to the script. Now, several months later we caught up with Donn about the first days of filming and talked about reuniting with some of his fellow Passions alumni along the way! 


Orpheus Star tells the story of Douglas Privett, a young, black and gay musician who is struggling with a life-long battle of depression. Douglas has planned to end his life, but a twist of fate finds him back in his hometown of Holden, Missouri to care for his ailing grandmother. The same Baptist pastor grandmother who raised him without any love and who as he comes to discover has demons of her own. "These two people who are estranged find a way to forgive each other and themselves. And find a way to be themselves and thus love each other."


Swaby has gathered a star-studded cast for the proof-of-concept short film that will be used to market the project to future investors. He talked about it being a “privilege to direct” legends like Starletta DuPois, Margaret Avery, Marla Gibbs, Lou Beatty Jr, and Patricia Belcher. Also starring in the short are Chrystee Pharris and Jade Harlow, who he worked with on the NBC soap Passions. “It’s great when you’ve got fantastic actor friends,’ he joked. “I love working with Chrystee. We’ve done several projects together. I love her and was just so happy to have her be a part of it,” Donn said. And having an award-winning actress like Jade around was a treat as well. “...because you really don't have to do much. She just knocked it out.” 

Donn told us about the serendipitous way that he was introduced to Orpheus Star’s leading man, David J. Castillo. The two met at the beginning of the year thanks to an alumni mentoring program at Boston University’s School of Theatre Arts. “I figured the best way to be a mentor was to tell him about my experience. The things I’ve gone through and the mistakes I’ve made and learned from.” Then when he was casting he had an “ah-ha” moment. “I all of a sudden envisioned him and thought ‘oh my god. He’d be perfect.’” David has been fully committed to the film even going as far as rocking a mohawk!





The cast and crew gathered recently to do a four-day shoot. Having to juggle so many things at once was a tad overwhelming. Between scheduling, paperwork, location scouting all the way down to craft service. “It was at times much of a challenge, but it's worth it when it's something that you really love, and this is a project that is really dear to my heart. I can only be grateful.” 

Between the wonderful cast, crew, and the very generous family member who helped finance the project, he has a lot to be grateful for. “No one’s getting rich on this project, you know? I’m just blessed that they all agreed to do it for me.” Orpheus Star has been Swaby’s own passion project for over a decade now. He started the script back in 2004 and being on set the first day was special. “It’s a fulfilling thing seeing the actors bring these characters to life.” With this being such a distinctive career moment, Donn has hired a videographer to shoot all of the action behind the scenes including the rehearsals and interviews with the cast.


Though, work on Orpheus Star has taken up a large chunk of his time. Donn has been hard at work on other exciting projects as well. He has written brand new episodes of his webisode series The Date, which follows two archaeologists as they debate the contents of a report about a controversial artifact and delve into the world of forbidden archaeology. You can see the first episode on his YouTube channel. He also had his short film The Two Professors make it as a finalist in the Azure Lorica Fanfilm Festival. The festival showcases films that pay homage to existing films, and The Two Professors did so with Indiana Jones.

Donn Swaby has continued to chase his dreams with amazing passion projects. And we cannot wait to see them come to fruition! Thanks for the wonderful chat!



A post shared by Donn Swaby the actor (@donn_swaby) on

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Soap Opera News: Donn Swaby Talks Reuniting with Fellow Passions Alums on His Latest Project and Much More! (EXCLUSIVE)
Donn Swaby Talks Reuniting with Fellow Passions Alums on His Latest Project and Much More! (EXCLUSIVE)
Donn Swaby Talks His Latest Project, Reuniting with Passion Alums, and much more! Check it out here ---->>>
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