LAWRENCE BUCHER : “ …. it’s all important.”
By Bill Sewers
Believe it or not, when I was a kid, I always wanted to be an aerial artist -- a trapeze flier, to be specific. Yup. For real. The fact that I wasn’t particularly fond of heights and that it wasn’t really convenient to run away and join the circus when you’re four never seemed to faze me.
Arizona native Lawrence Bucher – currently an actor, dancer, writer, and robotic mime extraordinaire making his home in Las Vegas – didn’t aspire to the air, but did want to be an artist, for sure. “I was always entertaining in one capacity or another,” he says, “and my grandmother was a direct influence … she was a published poet, a painter, and an artist in every way. I followed her lead, but then, in high school, my energy shifted from drawing and ceramics to dance.”
Finding himself deeply engulfed in the breakdance era and heavily influenced and mesmerized by the artistry of Michael Jackson, Lawrence found his niche. “I worked endlessly on the moves, and even dreamed of touring with Michael as a backup dancer,” he says. Then, one day, he was spotted by Robert Shields, the absolute master of robotics and mime. “Robert told me I had some of the best body control he had ever seen, which was quite a compliment coming from such an icon of movement.” Inspired and determined, Lawrence began to build and perform his own successful robotic mime act, supplementing his work by choreographing male revues and working occasionally as a Ford model through the ‘90s.
By 1997, he decided to explore another area of artistry that called to him and began studying acting. Gaining closer proximity to Los Angeles, he moved to Las Vegas in 2001 and soon come to rest under the wing of another icon, actor and theatrical mentor Joseph Bernard. “Wow. Joseph Bernard. I remember my first day on stage,” says Lawrence. “My hands were sweating so bad I could ring water out by clenching my fist. Joseph said he was going to be very hard on me and very critical, because he believed I had unlimited potential as an actor. I think I learned more about myself and how others would see me than I had ever dreamed.”
Lawrence studied with Joseph until 2006, and was one of the last people to speak with him before he passed away in New York. “I caught Joseph on the phone while he was at the airport ready to depart for New York. The last thing he said to me was ‘I love you, Lawrence, and remember … keep your clothes on’ [Joseph’s signature]. He was a tremendous influence in my life and will be forever missed.”
The last four years have been years of tremendous growth for Lawrence, and have spawned a wealth of projects, including two screenplays, “Forty Below Zero” and “In Darkness Cometh,” featuring Tim Burd (“Stingy Jack,” “Saw II”), and a starring role as merciless killer Jack DeGrasso in “Mutilation Mile.” “This film had many layers, and I ended up in hospital twice, as I found no emotional separation once I took the plunge.” Also due out, and making the art house rounds in 2011, is “Death Rattle – LSD.” And, true to his roots, he is currently reviving his robotic mime act for the convention and specialty act market.
“Although I am a physical actor,” says Lawrence, “the kinetic aspect is definitely what moves me. If the actor doesn’t buy the part, it’s no more than words on paper. The most important piece of advice I could give any actor is to treat the part as if it’s the biggest part in the project. Bring enthusiasm and energy to the moment, as if the whole story revolved around your character. Directors will remember you for it. All that we do as artists – it’s all important.”
Lawrence Bucher will be writing for Callback News with a new column for actors entitled “Fade In – Fade Out.” Watch for it soon on this site.