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The Multidirectional Life of Vetza Trussell--Actress, Cellist . . .

May 30, 1992|SUSAN KING

Multilingual Vetza Trussell is an actress, a symphony cellist, a performance artist, jazz vocalist, a wife and a mother of two daughters.

But Trussell, the daughter of Guatemalan novelist and composer Elizabeth Escobar, always felt she didn't have any direction in her life "because I was always going in several directions at once."

Then one day she went to see a psychic. "She said the most wonderful thing: 'You are the kind of person who can go in several directions and be comfortable with it. You should let yourself do that.' "

The psychic's words changed Trussell's perception of her life. "It's a funny thing when something will click for you," she says. "I never would have expected it (from a psychic), but it made a lot of sense. As long as I am doing something I feel fine. I am not married with being a singer or anything else. I need to have an outlet for expression."

Currently, her outlet for expression is acting. Trussell is starring in the title role of Marta in Edit Villarreal's comedy, "My Visits With MGM (My Grandmother Marta)," a Bilingual Foundation of the Arts production at the former Los Angeles Theatre Center. The play will be performed in Spanish today and Monday through June 7 in English.

Trussell didn't turn to acting until the mid-'80s. "I felt I needed more presence as a singer," she says. "I felt very comfortable singing, but I didn't feel comfortable talking to the audience. I thought maybe that would help."

She got "dragged by the hair" into her first acting audition and wound up getting the lead and her Equity card in a production of "The House of Bernarda Alba" at UC Riverside. Trussell has been so busy acting, she's put her singing career on hold.

"They tell you after you are a certain age in this business don't expect to work too much," Trussell says. "But that is just not true. I am in my late 30s and I haven't stopped working. Someone is looking out for me."

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