Friday, June 02, 2023

Talking to Joshua Satine, it’s hard not to see him as anything other than a typical 11-year-old kid. He loves video games, Marvel movies—“Spider-Man: No Way Home” is his favorite—and playing basketball with his friends. He also has a wide range of musical knowledge, and on the streets of New York City he cheerfully trades solos with his mother to Prince, Cyndi Lauper and Bryan Adams music playing on a nearby radio.

But in between these moments, there are others that reveal Satine’s impressive acting resume. He casually talks about reading screenplays, going on auditions and walking the tightrope of balancing his work and personal life—his mother chimes in that he also has quite a few chores to do at home.

Not 20 minutes later he is whisked away to hair and makeup, where he will transform into the role of Young Jacob Merz in the critically acclaimed, Olivier Award-winning Broadway play “Leopoldstadt.” When he’s next seen, it’s onstage and performing alongside an incredible cast led by Joshua Malina, Faye Castelow and Brandon Uranowitz. And yet Satine holds his own, and at curtain call he bows with the rest of these Broadway vets to a standing ovation.

It’s a tough role for a young actor. “Leopoldstadt” tells the story of two blended Jewish-Christian families living in Vienna that begins in 1899 and spans through the Holocaust and into the 1950s. The play, which was written by Broadway/West End legend Sir Tom Stoppard, is inspired by his family’s experiences before and after the two World Wars.

When asked how he tackles such a heavy role, Satine replies that he takes a minute to meditate before every performance. “I find a quiet spot, take a breather, and think about the story,” he shared with The Jewish Link. “I put myself into Jacob’s mindset so I can do the role justice.”

Satine reports that he is having a blast being a part of the production. He has performed with “Leopoldstadt” for roughly a hundred performances, a number that will continue to grow as he adds more shows to his resume.

But off the stage, Satine is also an accomplished screen actor. He has been modeling and acting in commercials since he was two and a half years old, prior to appearing in the movie “A Simple Favor.” Since then he has appeared in streaming shows including “The Watcher,” “Hunters” and the multi-award-winning “The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel.”

But “Leopoldstadt” is definitely his biggest role yet, and Satine reports that he has grown very close with his fellow actors, whom he refers to as his Broadway family. When asked about his favorite moments performing with them, he references opening day. Prior to the play beginning, everyone gathered in a circle and shared how grateful they were to be a part of the production.

“It was a great moment,” Satine said. “We were all in tune with each other and ready to give our best performances possible. It was at that moment I knew that I was part of something really special.”

As for what’s next for Satine, he is booked through July with “Leopoldstadt” performances, but after that he says he will continue going on auditions and pursuing his acting career. He says that his dream role would be playing Marty McFly in a potential “Back to the Future” reboot, or appearing in a Marvel movie.

For now though, he’s laser-focused on giving his all to “Leopoldstadt” and learning as much as he can from his fellow actors. He says he has already picked up a few skills from David Krumholtz, who previously played his on-stage dad before Malina took over the role.

“It’s an incredible honor to be a part of such a big production,” Satine went on to say. “Every day I feel so blessed that I get to do what so many others dream for, and I don’t take any of it for granted. My family helps keep me humble, and I am so excited to see what the future holds.”

If you would like to keep up with Satine on his acting journey, you can follow him on Instagram at @joshuasatine. You can also check out his IMDB page for an extensive list of his credits, https://www.imdb.com/name/nm8616990/.

If you would like to learn more about “Leopoldstadt” or buy tickets, you can do so by visiting their website, https://leopoldstadtplay.com/. Tickets are available through July 2.

Adam Samuel is a journalist from Teaneck. He blogs at www.adamssoapbox.com.

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