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Thom Bierdz

Friday, September 04, 2009

Thom Bierdz

Thom Bierdz plays Phillip Chancellor III on 'The Young And The Restless.' He is also an accomplished artist (considered the next Andy Warhol by IN magazine) and is the author of 'Forgiving Troy.''s Lawanda Johnson spoke with Thom about his life on and off screen, his art, and coping with the murder of his mother.Lawanda Johnson: You play Phillip Chancellor III on "The Young And The Restless." Do you feel like you can relate to your character Phillip in real life?

Thom Bierdz: Absolutely! I came back as a gay character and I am gay in real life. That's just the biggest place where I can relate. Well I can also relate how deeply I care about the people on the show and my storyline. You know I go back 25 years with them. And they are really, really sweet people. Jeanne Cooper, Mrs. Chancellor … I swear to you that I can call her at anytime for anything. That's just the kind of person she is. So, yeah, I can relate to Phillip in a lot of ways.

LJ: IN Magazine named you the "next Andy Warhol." Do you think those are big shoes to fill in the art industry?

TB: You know what, I never thought that a piece of artwork was ever considered good or bad. I'm coming from a place where I don't think my stuff is good or bad; it's the composition that works for me ...There are some many styles. So who knows if I'll be the next Warhol. I think I am a kindred spirit. I just love the art so much.

LJ: Since you have painted over 400 paintings, do you agree with the phrase: "art sets the soul free?" If so, what motivates you to paint?

TB: Art has definitely set my mind free because there have been times where I've been really anxious and paranoid and I needed to go to the canvas to get it out. It just spilled out of my head and onto the canvas, it becomes so much lighter. It works that way for me.

LJ: Name one of your favorite paintings that you've painted?

TB: I like "My Dogs." It is a Chihuahua and a Beagle ... um, yeah, I can say that those are my favorites.

LJ: Giving back to charities is one of your other accomplishments. You have raised over $100,000 for painting at charity events. What are the names of the charities?

TB: N.A.R.S.A.D, National Alliance Research for Schizophrenia and Depression; P.E.T.A; Human Rights Campaign; The Matthew Shepard Foundation and Gay and Lesbian Elder Housing. There are more on my website

LJ: "Forgiving Troy" reveals a lot about your life and the incident of your brother, Troy, murdering your mother. Why did you decide to write the book? Was it difficult writing it?

TB: It was the hardest thing that I've ever done. I wouldn't recommend it to anybody because it was critical to my sanity, but I had to figure it out. I felt that I had to write it because what had happen was so incredible that it was bigger than life and I thought that people were not going to believe this. It's incredible how things have turned around so much. It was extremely chaotic to my brother in prison.

LJ: Why did you call your book "Forgiving Troy?" Do you think that this was a moment for you to forgive your brother for what he had done?

TB: Yeah, it was actually a long process. It took years for me to do. That's ultimately what the book is about, figuring out who he was and what he had done. From his whole life ... breaking down all the theories.

LJ: What can we expect next for you?

TB: Um, to extend my "Young And The Restless" contract. I have every reason to suspect that they're going to want Phillip to continue and I hope that down the line Phillip has a romance. I also got this wonderful actor playing my son on the show, Chance, John Driscoll. So I'm sure there are a lot of possibilities there. You'll continue to see me as a proud gay man who is hopefully acting and painting.

Link: Original Article