From the interview archives.
He’s appeared on everything from The Bachelor, The Amazing Race, Dancing With The Stars and X-Factor and musician, actor, and adrenaline junkie Alex Sparrow is showing no signs of slowing down. Since winning X-Factor, Alex linked up with Producer RedOne and with new music on the horizon, VULKAN caught up to see what fans can expect from his latest release and to discuss his role as Alexi Pretrov on the series UnREAL.
Of all the shows you have participated on thus far, which one provided you with the greatest challenge?
Every step and every decision you take in life has an impact on you, so just imagine what a huge effect every role causes when you have to become someone else, and make you character reality yours. From all of the characters I’ve ever portrayed in my acting career, Alexi in “UnReal” is the most difficult one. Nearly none of the things he does I have done if have ever experienced in my life, so it was very interesting for me as an actor, and hard – not only morally, but also physically. Although it was difficult, I am very thankful to the writer’s team because they made my character as edgy as you’ve seen him in the series, and that they were supporting all my crazy ideas about him, and gave me a chance to realize all of it!
What’s one show you have your sights on to tackle next?
I would love to surprise my fans with something as unexpected as my character in “UnReal,” but I am also getting ready to shoot my first feature film in Los Angeles based on my own script, which I am very excited about!
You seem fearless and confident. Who would you say you get that from?
I always had it in my DNA. When I was 18, I jumped with a parachute for a first time with a group of the beginners like me, and was surprised that everyone was scared. I felt so happy and excited, and couldn’t wait to jump out of the plane! It was so much fun. Later, I realized that I love extreme and challenge, and the feeling to walk on the edge. Luckily, my job is giving me incredible chances to do these kinds of things. I have already jumped out the window from burning houses, jumped from the bridge into an ice-hole in the frozen river, and walked down the outside wall of 70 story building above Bangkok. So, my job is very fun and always thrilling!
What does your normal workout routine look like on an average day?
Believe it or not as much as I love active sports, I hate going to the gym. It is a real torture for me. Fitness is one of the most non-creative activities on earth. I respect and even admire people who love this process, but my heart given to the sports where you can get real emotions and results and not only the “shape.” But the actor’s body is his professional instrument, so I know how to work and know how to achieve the shape results as quickly as possible. I love sports, but only those where you have partners and the opportunity fight, to win, or to lose. When I go to the gym, I go to work for my roles. When I need to have muscle or lose weight then I would go. But I am still looking forward for the role I would need to get fat – that would be a dream role for me, as I love sweets!
What advice might you have for others taking part in a reality series such as The Amazing Race?
Go only to win! Otherwise it will not work.
You mentioned above that you play Alexi Petrov in UnREAL, a behind the scenes look at the reality of dating competition shows. Would you yourself ever take part in a dating show? Why/why not?
This is a fun question for me, because two years ago I was the “Bachelor” myself. The funny thing is on the Bachelor show, I was the most rebellious Bachelor of all time – I was always breaking the rules, doing my own thing, and confronting the producer’s manipulation. Although in “UnReal” I had to obey and follow the script, I guess it was a kind of interesting. I think anyone who managed to be a Bachelor in the reality series first, and then switching places, becomes a suitor and fighter for the heart of a girl in the scripted series “UnReal”, and it was an amazing experience to get from the Bachelor to the suitor! But, I was lucky to see it from the other side, becoming one of the twenty-five contenders for the heart of one girl. Of course it was very interesting experience to be one of those who she chooses from, and I have to admit that this is not the most pleasant feeling. So each time standing there I thought about those girls that were standing in front of me waiting when I would give them a rose, with producer’s voice in my earpiece asking me not to give the rose too fast, so cameras have more time to film the girl’s emotions… The real “Bachelor” is certainly a very cruel and in a way inhuman show, which can break hearts and even a life.
How accurate would you say the series is in showing behind the scenes of reality TV series in general?
I like how nobody knows about all of the offscreen backstage life of this project. And believe me – what you see in the show is almost 100% how the most romantic show “Bachelor” is really made. The “UnReal” producers are doing a great job. It is really hard to see the difference as it is very real.
If you hadn’t won X-Factor, what was going to be your next move to push forward your music career?
I started my music career at the age of 6 by winning a lot of music contests as a young accordion player, then I switched to singing and at 15 won Delthic Games Of Art. I love to compete and love to win, and going to the contests I always was going just for one place there – the 1st one. I have this mentality from sports, as my other passion was soccer as I played for the local junior team. Sports taught me never to give up, and believe that you can always change everything before the game is over. So, if I would not get to “X Factor” then I would certainly go try to win something else!
How has been your experience working with RedOne?
Working with Red was a great experience. As a young artist, I was blessed to get a chance to learn from his talent and creativity, and that helped me to develop as composer and music producer which I am very thankful for.
Who would you like to collaborate with this year, whether it’s a writer, singer, producer or otherwise?
You know, I am writing and directing lots of music videos not only for myself, also for other artists, and one of my videos for my song “She’s Crazy But She’s Mine” is about the funny prank couple went viral all over the world. I saw that people like it, and made a “music video series” out of it, shooting each video for my new single as a new episode. Now I have a great idea for making a different, but clickable music video series for my upcoming American album, and I need a very cool and funny girl for it. So, I would love to collaborate with one of the American girl-viners, they are really great!
When can we expect some new music?
It’s coming! This year I am focusing on the music and I start to release my English album written in collaboration with RedOne. On April 1, the International Day Of Fulls, I have released a “Fools In Love” package – 3 songs together with 3 episode “music video series” that I have written and directed.
So very soon – a lot of new music with the special sound of Alex Sparrow to come!
What would you say your greatest passion in life is?
Music, as giving me an incredible chance of endless creativity and energy exchange with the audience. There is nothing on earth which makes me feel more happy and complete.