Nashawn Kearse has the kind of CV, that any television actor would covet. In the span of a television season he's gone from being thrown into the spotlight as Caleb on ABC’s hit dramedy Desperate Housewives to being spotted on Entourage, the new independent film My Brother, with Vanessa Williams and closing it out with the finale episodes of The Sopranos. MF caught up with 6'2" former personal trainer from Brooklyn to find out how he does it all.
MF: First things first, how do you get those abs?
Nashawn Kearse: Lots of crunches and a bit of genetics.
MF: How often are you in the gym?
NK: 4 times a week.
MF: I understand that you are a personal trainer; do you still have time to train with your acting career?
NK: Yes, I still have clients in New York and when I’m here I train people at their house and in the city.
MF: So your making house calls?
NK: Yes…to train and stretch women, that’s what I do.
MF: What inspired you to start acting?
NK: I started with an organization called City Kids, but I got into acting and stuff to get away from the projects. I was always dancing and rehearsing all the time. We got to do shows and travel so I got to see the world which was the best thing for me.
MF: I know your mom raised you, what are some of the things she instilled in you which still stick with you now?
NK: To stand up for myself. I remember when I was growing up, light skinned guys were in and I was dark, and use to be teased for being so dark and couldn’t get a girlfriend because I was so dark and I use to cry and say: ‘I want to be light skinned’ and she would just talk to me and tell me I should be proud to be dark skinned, stuff like “the blacker the berry, the sweeter the juice.” [ Laughter]
She just taught me to be strong, to be a man and respect women because I was raised by a woman. The other stuff I learned just by living.
MF: What did she teach you about women?
NK: I would just sit and listen to my mother, my sister and their friends and I learned how emotional women are. I know everything about women, how to braid hair…I know stuff that I probably shouldn’t know, but you know, just to be respectful of women because they’re the mothers and the queens.
MF: Well what kind of girls do you look for now?
NK: Nothing in particular, just respectful. A woman with a plan is always good, who is about doing something or has goals in life. One who hasn’t been around (you know) funny, easy to talk to…
MF: I heard that a woman recently flashed you, so how do you manage to escape those types of situations?
NK: That happened before I was with my girlfriend. But it ain’t easy! I close my eyes and keep it moving. You stay focused on what you do and that’s it.
MF: Tell me about your role on The Sopranos this season.
NK: You trying to get me in trouble! They make you sign a confidentially agreement so I can’t talk about it.
MF: What’s next for you?
NK: The Sopranos and more auditions to get more work.
Dominga Martin is a New York based writer and the Editor-In-Chief of Crème Magazine