Joel Nagle

Joel Nagle is an actor, writer, and filmmaker. The Straitjacket, Kernel Of Sanity (Audelco Award nomination, Outstanding Ensemble Performance); M21/Bellevue, South Delancey, Henry’s Lunchroom, The Trials of MS. Katherine and Second (Plays and Playwrights 2005); Guiding Light (CBS) & All My Children (ABC), and the films The Challenger, Entropy, Say Nothing and Last Words of the Holy Ghost, which has recently screened at several film festivals including: Lucerne International Film Festival in Switzerland, Aguilar Film Festival in Spain where it won for best short film in the Americas, LA Shorts Fest, Austin Film Festival, Fort Lauderdale International Film Festival, Driftless Film Festival, Coney Island Film Festival and the Big Apple Film Festival. SAG-AFTRA-AEA member.

How did you get started in theatre?  Someone was crazy enough to cast me in a show.  It was the first play I auditioned for after getting some real training as an actor. Before that I had worked on some films, commercials and music videos, but that was really just winging it – instincts and cheekbones will only get you so far. Now I’m a little wiser, more experienced and at least have a way to approach the work. I didn’t dare attempt theater prior to formally studying as an actor, and it was probably a good decision. My first play was a Way Off Broadway and Way Downtown production. Actually, now that I think about it, most of my theater work has been way off and way down… but in a good way. I remember during the final callback, at one point, I wasn’t quite sure what was going on or what I was supposed to be doing, so I fell back on acting 101: stay in the moment, be open and available, really listen to what’s being said and let it happen to me. And that was that. I got the part.  

When did I know I wanted to be an actor? Well, I don’t know that there was ever any big moment when it hit me, but there are moments when I’m watching really good actors work that I get a fire in my gut and feel honored to be working as an actor. When I’m doing it, acting that is, I just love the moments and being able to turn off the controls and just let it all unfold and happen as it will. Or in the case of a play, where you rehearse for weeks, allowing it all to happen in a performance as if it’s fresh off the vine. When that happens, those are the moments I really know this is for me. You really have to keep searching for opportunities to do your work and make it happen, and they’re not always easy to find. I mean, there are plenty of productions being mounted every week, but getting in with the right people and productions is the key to satisfying that hunger to perform at a certain level and go beyond what you think you’re capable of doing. That’s really the only way to grow and stay satisfied as a performer — take on new and bigger challenges and find out what it takes by doing it… by walking in those shoes.  –Zack Calhoun

NFT Credits

Credit Type Production Season
Actor Kernel of Sanity 2008-09 Season