Lawrenceville-based actor takes a turn in 'Parks'


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Local actor/instructor Randy Kovitz appears in the season finale of NBC's "Parks and Recreation" (9:30 tonight, WPXI), playing Pawnee's election commissioner, Terrance.

You'd think he might know the outcome of the city council race between Leslie Knope (Amy Poehler) and an empty-headed Sweetums candy scion (guest star Paul Rudd), but he doesn't.


'Parks and Recreation'
  • When: 9:30 tonight, NBC.
  • Starring: Amy Poehler.

"I was not given an entire script," Mr. Kovitz said. "When you work, they just give you the [script pages] for the day you're shooting, so I have no idea."

Mr. Kovitz grew up near Los Angeles and graduated from Carnegie Mellon in 1977, moved to New York and then spent 20 years in Los Angeles. He moved back to Pittsburgh seven years ago and lives in Lawrenceville. He's a local actor and filmmaker, is a fight director at Pittsburgh Public Theater and teaches acting in front of the camera at CMU.

He previously appeared on an episode of "Fringe" after moving back to Pittsburgh, and he auditioned for "Parks" on video and was cast off of that.

He appears in two scenes and acts alongside Ms. Poehler, Adam Scott and recurring guest star Kathryn Hahn, who plays a political operative for Leslie's rival.

"It was terrific. They would change things up a lot on every take," Mr. Kovitz said. "And what was very cool is when I left L.A., they hadn't started with this style of television, which developed from 'The Office,' shooting with two handheld cameras. I worked on four-camera sitcoms and one-camera episodics, but on this they shoot with two handheld cameras. You don't even know where the [cameras are] at, which is really good for your acting."

He was also impressed by director Mike Schur, one of the "Parks" showrunners.

"Once they've gotten everything he says, 'Let's do a fun run,' which is a very loose version of the scene with lots of room for improvisation," Mr. Kovitz said. "The last time through, everybody overlapped and added things. It was very fun. I have no idea what takes will be used, but it was a cool thing."

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A version of this story first appeared in Tuned In Journal blog at post-gazette.com/tv. TV writer Rob Owen: rowen@post-gazette.com or 412-263-2582. Follow RobOwenTV on Twitter or Facebook.


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