BWW Interview: Kimleigh Smith Talks One-Woman Show, Upcoming Projects, and Jason Bateman's BAD WORDS
It's safe to say that multi-talented actress and creator Kimleigh Smith is no stranger to trauma; as a teen, she was gang-raped by three college football players. However, Smith has managed to turn things around and become an adovcate for self-esteem while assisting others who have gone through trauma of their own.
Kimleigh Smith has appeared in both film and television, including "The Princess Diaries", "Lincoln Heights", "Parenthood", and most recently, Jason Bateman's "Bad Words". She is also the mastermind behind her one-woman show, T-O-T-A-L-L-Y.
This week, BWW was given the oppurtunity to speak exclusively with Kimleigh Smith about her work and her upcoming projects.
Broadwayworld: You were recently chosen as one of the world's leading experts in overcoming obstacles and will be featured in Brian Tracy's upcoming book, 'The Winning Way'. Can you give us a preview of that?
Kimleigh Smith: Well, the greatest thing I've ever found is that your greatest obstacle becomes your greatest gift. I was a victim of gang rape when I was 17 in college, by three college football players, and out of that trauma and that tragedy is the story that you'll read in the book. And it's really about what I did to regain my power and to overcome that obstacle and also to turn it into my goal of helping other people become their own superhero.
BWW: After being assaulted as a teen, you decided to create your own one-woman show T-O-T-A-L-L-Y. What is the concept behind this show, and what message are you trying to convey to your audiences?
KS: The concept behind the show is that we all have stuff that we go through, and we can either use it as our downfalls, or as I said, we could use it as our gifts. I woke up one day and I was like, "I can't keep living this way, I can't keep living as the victim, and I don't just want to live as a survivor." I really want to live life as a thriver, because I survived the minute I got up off the floor from being gang raped, that's when I became a survivor. This whole show is about being a thriver, but also realizing that it doesn't happen in one step. I really took the journey from being an innocent cheerleader, to being gang raped, to realizing that I am this awesome, powerful person, but knowing that being powerful means I may fall down sometimes, and being okay with looking fear in the eye, falling down, and going forward. Becoming this powerful being that I am today, which is really owning my own superpower. I quote at the end of the show, "Even when I'm a mess, I put an 'S' on my chest, I am SuperWoman", and that's really what I love about that Alicia Keys song, is that, life is not perfect, but we make it as perfect as it can be by being strong enough to overcome those little things that happen or the big things that happen, or all the fear that comes up. Act in spite of fear, that's what this show is about.