Actor/musician Dallas Hart is perhaps best known for his starring role as ‘Leo Cruz’ on Netflix’s The Greenhouse Academy, which ran from 2017 to 2019. Away from the hit series, Dallas has appeared as a guest star on other shows such as Rizzoli and Isles, Astrid Clover and The Fosters.
Additionally, Dallas is a musician known under the name HÆRT, with his songs being available to stream on Spotify.
Thank you to Dallas for taking the time to chat with Courageous Nerd.
Welcome, and thank you for taking the time to do this.
Dallas Hart (DH): Yeah, thanks so much for having me.
You’re known for playing Leo Cruz on The Greenhouse Academy. How did you find the experience of developing a character over multiple seasons?
DH: Oh, it was amazing. I loved having the opportunity to have so much time, to really dive into a character. Don’t get me wrong, I love films, but TV is where it’s at as an actor, in my opinion. You get to sit with the character, discover who he is and discover things about yourself as well.
How different or similar would you say Leo is to yourself, Dallas, in real life?
DH: I would say he’s pretty similar. He’s a musician like myself, which is my favourite part about it. We relate through music and I think that’s the biggest thing we have in common.
Before booking that show, were you familiar with the Israeli series it was based on?
DH: Yes. They had sent us some links and I had done a lot of research on the show that [our show] was based on. It was kind of cool to see the Netflix take on it.
According to IMDB, your first credit is a 2011 short film. How did you start the journey of pursuing acting professionally?
DH: Well, I’d honestly always been making my own films since I was a kid. So, I started there. I learned everything there was in acting, including the filmmaking side. I’m now on-set, producing and starring in my first film. It’s kind of cool to see it go from home made movies, to the real deal here.
You’ve done many guest star roles – The Fosters, Rizzoli and Isles, Astrid Clover. Do any of those experiences stand out in your mind?
DH: Yeah, Rizzoli and Isles was really cool. The set was amazing, honestly. I remember stepping on it and being like: “Wow, this is so cool.” Being on a studio, seeing all the places that scenes take place on the show. I was actually a fan of the show myself. It was just a really fun experience.
Who would you describe as being your acting influence?
DH: I really love Johnny Depp. His character work is unmatched, in my opinion. He’s also a musician. I just really admire all of his stuff.
Working on professional sets for as long as you have, when did you decide to pursue writing, producting or directing?
DH: I’ve always loved creating stories. I think acting is a huge part in that. It’s all about telling a story. I think everything fits in the same world for me, honestly. I love every part of the story making process. You need all three in order to make it happen – writer, director and actor. There’s a million other pieces, but those are super important parts in telling the story. I think that’s why I like all of them so much.
You’re also a musician and your songs are available on platforms such as Spotify. How would you say the acting and music intertwines?
DH: It’s the same with storytelling, in my opinion. Writing music and writing a script are very similar. You’re telling a story, giving emotions of a scene and giving emotions to a song. Kind of sharing that with the world.
Earlier in the discussion, you mentioned you’re on set shooting your feature film. How have you found the experience of watching the scenes you wrote play out in front of you?
DH: Oh yeah, it’s really crazy and exciting to watch. It’s so cool to see everyone come together on set – the cast and crew here are incredible. Seeing them bring something to life in their own way but still true to the script, is amazing. Everyone’s going to experience and see something different in the script. I think that everyone here is really doing a great job of bringing it to life.
In terms of your music, would you say it falls into a particular genre or theme?
DH: It definitely fits into either singer-songwriter, or a more electronic pop sound.
How would you describe your process of developing a new song?
DH: I sit down, usually starting on piano or guitar. Come up with some chords that I like and then just start singing. Whatever comes out, whether forming a story from past experience or what I’m going through at that moment.
Other than your film, are there any other upcoming projects you’d like to mention?
DH: No, not at the moment. I’ve definitely been focusing on this project for now. Wait for it to somewhat get back to normal, I guess. It’s crazy with the pandemic. The fact that I’m on set right now is a blessing.
During the time we’re currently in with the pandemic, what advice would you offer to fans of your work or you personally?
DH: Definitely don’t be afraid to get creative. Start telling your own stories. Just let the world know how you’re feeling and how you’re experiencing things. Everyone’s going to be there, to help you through any issues you’re having. Storytelling is the best way to, I don’t know, share yourself with the world.
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