In a couple of Hallmark films, I noticed this actress with a very unusual name, and I became quite intrigued to discover more about her. Unique names always do fascinate me, and I was pleased when Enid-Raye recently consented to answer a few questions for me about her career, her penchant for comedy, and even some of her favorite films of all-time.
RH: First of all, is there a story behind your name?
EA: The story behind my name is that my Mom was in labor with me for an exceedingly long period of time, and when I finally came out, she saddled me with a name that would be mispronounced in the most hilarious ways possible for all of my days. My first name is hyphenated. Enid-Raye, last name Adams. People often shorten it to Enid which is not my fave. However, I do enjoy some of the mispronunciations I’ve seen. My name was once bungled quite badly (and deliciously) by a company that was sending me trading cards promoting my character from an episode of Stargate SG1. The package was addressed to MR. ENICI-RAVE ADOMI. Like for real. When attempting to read the name so he could log it for his files, the UPS delivery guy looked every bit as astonished and confused as one might expect when greeting a young lady apparently named Mr. Enici-Rave Adomi. He took a good long moment, very nearly whistled and shook his head and then in a moment of confusion and surrender wrote down “Eric Adams” instead. I still have the mailing label somewhere I think. I like to pull it out sometimes and go all “007” when introducing myself. “The name is Adomi, Enici-Rave Adomi.”
Why did you become an actress? What kind of training have you had?
I became an actor for the glamour (Spanx), the fame (three people know my name outside my family) and the free food on set (that is no joke).
I went to Mount Royal College and studied in the Theatre Arts program. It was an incredible experience. I rehearsed and performed for projects in classes all day and rehearsed and performed for the main stage productions in the evenings and on weekends. I rarely saw the outside of that place for two years. I developed a strong work ethic thanks to the wonderful instructors and guest directors employed by the department.
Tell us the story of your first feature in which you were cast with Russell Crowe.
The first feature film I ever did was a 1940’s period piece called For The Moment. It was a beautiful, independent film shot in Brandon, Manitoba in 1992. I hadn’t yet decided to become an actor when they were casting the film. I was beginning a year of arts studies at Brandon University at the time. While making the trip from Portage la Prairie where I grew up, to Brandon, I heard about a casting call for the film on the radio. I thought, what the hay? So I got myself settled into the dorm and then snuck off to one of the casting sessions that weekend. I was cast as “Lovely Young Thing”. All I had to do in the movie was tap Russell Crowe’s shoulder in a dance scene and smile at him. Unfortunately due to a severe case of nerves, I looked like a rabid gopher every time I smiled on camera and my part was cut from the film.
Tell us about your two performances for which you received Leo Award nominations–DaVinci’s Inquest and The Haunting Hour. How did you get those roles? How did you develop the characters? Any special memories from either or both?
I auditioned for Da Vinci’s Inquest and The Haunting Hour and booked the jobs from those auditions. (I have only once ever been offered something I didn’t audition for.) Both of those characters were a lot of fun for different reasons. In Da Vinci’s Inquest, I actually played two different characters: A daughter grieving the death of her mother in season three (which was particularly meaningful as my own Mom had died a few months before I booked that job), and a mentally unstable woman who stalks Sergeant Sheila Kurtz in a seven-episode arc throughout season five. Playing that character, Laura Maitland, was a tremendously fulfilling experience. Although I did have conversations with the show’s creator, Chris Haddock, who provided me with necessary information about Laura’s psyche, I didn’t get scripts in advance. So I had no idea what was coming. It was a fascinating process playing someone whose behavior and choices are completely out of left field in each episode, but who believes so strongly in the false reality she’s fabricated that every moment is grounded in her own subtle truth.
In The Haunting Hour, I played a woman dealing with a low grade depression who was struggling with a failing marriage while trying to raise her kids. Working on that show was a real treat for me. I got to sink my teeth into a substantial character with a complicated inner life who finds herself buckling under the pressure of her own perceived failings. There is a horror element in the show, as well, which was a story line about the Weeping Woman – a seemingly demonic figure caught between our reality and the spirit world who must wander the earth searching for her drowned children. My character’s story weaves through the larger hauntings inflicted on the family by the Weeping Woman. The entire process was a blessing. I had the pleasure of being cast by Emmy award-winning casting director, Jackie Lind. I got to work with Emmy-nominated Neill Fearnley, who did a fantastic job directing that episode. Rico Rodriguez, who starred in that episode, was absolutely delightful. The entire cast and crew were lovely and it was a pleasure to work with every one of them.
What have been a couple of your favorite roles where you have guest-starred or been in a film? Why are they favorites?
I’m happy to say I’ve played a lot of characters I’ve enjoyed for one reason or another over the years. If I had to pick, I think a recent favorite would be voicing the character of Gloriosa Daisy in My Little Pony: Equestria Girls – Legend of Everfree movie. That was so fun! I got to work with Nicole Oliver, Brian Doe, Ashleigh Ball, Andrea Libman, Cathy Weseluck, Rebecca Shoichet and my personal favorite Tabitha St. Germain, who is funny as all get out. (She’s hilarious in the studio and her tweets regularly make me laugh myself silly.) I decided a few years ago that I wanted to pursue voice work and breaking into that field is not the easiest nut to crack. Not only did I get to work on a show that is beloved by so many fans of all ages, with a terrific group of people across the board, but I also got to play a character who significantly impacts the world around her. These are my favorite kind of roles to play. Also, I watched it with my little boys, which I loved. At one point, while we were watching the movie, my nine-year-old turned to me and said, “Mom. You’re AWESOME!” That was a thrill because every day when I walk them to school, the minute we get within a block of the place they stop acknowledging my existence. Which I don’t understand. It’s not like I’m wearing polyester argyle buffet pants. (Obviously I’ll be wearing those when they’re in Junior High.)
You have been in a couple of Hallmark films. What do you like about working for Hallmark? Any memories or special moments from either film?
It’s always nice to work for Hallmark. In addition to a lovely headlining cast, Hallmark casts a great group of local actors in their movies as well, many of whom are dear friends. I’m usually cast in a comedic element of some sort, and those kinds of roles are a lot of fun to play. Playing E. Cary in Debbie Macomber’s Dashing Through The Snow was not only an opportunity to work and play with my incredibly talented friends, Aaron Craven and Rukiya Bernard, but it was also a chance to work again with the lovely director Kristoffer Tabori. Plus it was the first time I was ever in a Christmas movie! As an insufferable human who starts listening to Christmas carols in early September, finally being cast in a holiday movie was the icing on the fruitcake I can always be found eating because no one else will touch the stuff.
Any other current or upcoming works you can mention?
I appeared in a recent episode of Lucifer (October 24th), and My Little Pony: Equestria Girls – Legend of Everfree is currently playing on Netflix.
You hosted the Leo Awards in 2014 and wrote for that as well. Do you have plans to write more or possibly to eventually direct/produce?
I’m currently working on a collection of essays as well as a play which I may perform in my living room.
As you have done some stand-up comedy, is that something you still do on occasion?
I still do stand-up, but only at the dinner table for my husband and my kids. My favorite is making my kids laugh so hard they snort whatever they’re drinking out their nose. I’m very big with the six- and nine-year-old demographic. I’m not sure this means I’m ready to headline any time soon.
If you were going to have a film weekend at home, what five films would you absolutely have to include?
Five Film Weekend Must-Haves:
1, 2 & 3: Lord Of The Rings Trilogy
4: It’s a Wonderful Life
5: Thrashin’ (The 1986 flick about skateboarding gang rivals battling for skateboard supremacy. Also, a love story!)
Bonus 6th: Field of Dreams (How I love that movie.)
It is always a treat for me to learn about actors who appear in every role in the Hallmark films I adore (Dashing Through the Snow is one of those, and I’ll never forget her no-nonsense character in that one.), so this particular interview is a genuine treat for me to share. Discovering that she is a voice in one of the My Little Pony features (I can hardly wait to tell my daughter, the ultra My Little Pony fan) is merely the icing on the cake for me, and now I get to share her story with my lovely readers. There is no doubt in my mind that Enid-Raye is one who has worked hard to be a successful actress, and while she may never have the standing of “household name,” that’s not why she does it. She loves what she does for a living, but her family is also extremely important to her. Therefore, this is a woman who has her priorities straight, and I can hardly wait to see what the future holds for her. Be sure that the next time you watch Dashing Through the Snow that you notice her character (I reviewed that film here if you need a refresher), but be sure that you check out her other works as well, as you may find some gems with which you were not familiar heretofore. Additionally, please check out her links below and follow her if possible, lest you miss any of the works and news from this humble, charming, witty woman who is as kind, talented and unpretentious as they come!
Actor, Writer, Can Be Found Wherever Snacks Are Sold
“To know you have enough is to be rich.” – Tao Te Ching
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