by Marialena Rago
“There’s a sense of community and camaraderie that fulfills a very social and spiritual need for me.”
Trevor Salter can do it all. The San Diego native sings, acts, and dances in film, music videos and theater. He has been at The Public, Lucille Lortel Theatre and the esteemed Carnegie Hall. So, how does a guy from the Golden State get into song and dance?
“When I was five, my mama signed me up for my school’s theater program cause I was a little rascal that needed an outlet for all my frenetic energy,” he says. “I played the Lion in the Wizard of Oz and fell in love with being on stage and making people laugh. We lost the theater program for a few years shortly after that, but I picked it up again in high school. I went to an all-boys Catholic school and theater was the only way I could meet girls!”
After graduating from NYU with a degree in drama, Salter began to teach movement. “I co-teach first-year drama majors with my good friend Ae, and the whole class is devoted to helping the students get into their bodies to improve stage presence and body awareness.”
Movement, not just dance, can help actor in enormous ways as Salter explains. “We help them better understand how spatial relationships and composition can be used as tools to tell a story. We do a lot of contact improvisation and partnering as well.”
When he isn’t on stage or teaching, Salter is also a personal trainer. Staying healthy is very important when you are in a show and though sometimes Salter would love to devour a whole pizza, he knows that being healthy and balanced is the best thing for him and his body. “I feel my best when I have a comprehensive workout regimen. I try to lift 3-5 times a week and then around that I try to mix it up with hot yoga, Pilates, running, and HIIT classes…A good diet is important too. I try to eat paleo as much as possible…”
As many actors who strive to be on Broadway can tell you, you’re going to have to start from the bottom before you can reach The Great White Way and Salter has seen shows go from words on a page in rehearsals to bright lights on a stage. One show he says he would love to see transferred on to Broadway is Here Lies Love which tells the story of Filipina First Lady Imelda Marcos.
“That’s my family right there,” Salter says. “There have been multiple opportunities for the show to transfer but for some reason it’s always fallen through. That’s a show that I could perform every day for the rest of my life. There’s always gonna be a little part of me that hopes it comes back.”
This fall he will be back at The Public Theatre in the musical Soft Power, which debuted out on the West Coast last summer. The contemporary comedy rewinds our recent political history and plays it back through a Chinese lens and has a majority Asian cast. Something tells us that Salter is getting closer and closer to his name being in those bright lights.