Interviewed by Brian Rademacher
Date: July 28th, 2006
Hi Victoria! How’s it going today?
Hi Brian, it’s going pretty good.
How’s the weather where you are?
It feels like we’re in the Amazon. It’s really, really hot in California.
Can you tell us about back when you were growing up as a child in California, your youth growing up through to your high school days?
I guess I was the weird girl. When I was in high school I had this really outrageous jacket with a fur collar and big rhinestone earrings like 80’s make-up. I was out of style, but I turned into my own style. I got in to the cakewalk stuff and doing my own music collection. I played piano since I was seven. I was a weird girl. I went to college and studied music and everyone in the band studied music. I guess it’s not cool to say that because it’s supposed to be all natural stuff.
What nationality are you?
Swedish and Danish.
You lived close to Area 51. Can you tell me anything about that experience?
I might be an alien, but there’s no evidence of that. I used to think I was adopted and tried to convince my parents of that. My siblings look similar to me so we had seven little aliens.
When you went to BYU and you received a B.A. in Music Media and Sound Engineering, were you a party girl or strictly by-the-book?
Well Victoria Mazze is rewriting history. I don’t think she went to school. She just showed up about a year ago from the planet Zenu and started taking over.
Looking to the future, what did you want to be?
It was never really about a career, more about making some things that were really special and different, and making an impact of sorts. I didn’t know what that would be. I kind of held off on music for awhile. I knew I would really be good at it, and people often try to keep away from things they are good at in case they fail.
What was the biggest advice your Mom and Dad gave you?
Well, my mom always said to be myself. She never let anyone push me around and taught me how to defend myself and stand up for what I believe in. She encouraged me to be different and do anything I wanted to. Three of my grandparents were also musicians so it was kind of a natural thing to do that.
Of film, TV, recording, composing and theater, which was the most difficult and why?
Probably music, because it was the scariest one for me. I knew that was the one I should do so I stayed away from it. I really do love anything that encompasses the arts and ideas and stories.
What was your favorite film growing up?
“Breakfast at Tiffany’s,” I can watch a story and know everything about it. “Breakfast at Tiffany’s” is one of those movies that you think is simple and stupid, and so I wondered why anyone liked this movie. When I got older and moved to L.A. I realized how sound the movie is. That’s the only one that took me by surprise.
Your latest two movies are "Bram Stoker's ‘Dracula's Curse’ " and “Frat House.” Have you signed on to do any other movies at this time?
(Surprised) How do you guys know that, how do you get your information? This is crazy.
I study for hours before an interview and do some major research any way I can. I try to learn your upbringing from birth until the point you are at now.
Well “Frat House,” Victoria Mazze will make an appearance in that. We’re also working on music videos. We have one that is going to come out that is not a performance video- it’s a real story fairytale, like a miniature movie.
Do you get to keep anything from any of the movies that you worked on as a memory?
Yeah, there are some souvenirs I keep around. Lots of the shows we do I have some crazy wardrobes pieces I probably keep around and will use in every single show. So people will start to recognize things.
Do you remember the first time your parents took you to the theater and what show it was?
That’s tricky because I was pretty young. It was more forties movies and classical music because I didn’t get out much. I grew up in a small town. My parents kept us in a small commune and I basically only knew my brothers and sisters. I didn’t have many friends. I did some community theater but I didn’t go to the big theater performances.
Do you remember what the first record you ever bought and the first concert you attended?
That was another thing; I didn’t have money to buy anything. Whatever I got used to be owned by my sisters. So we did have a record player, and my one sister had Simon and Garfunkel and the Carpenters. My other sister had Depeche Mode and the B52’s on tape, so I kind of had their little contraband. That’s where I learned modern music.
Probably - I know you’re going to hate me for this-but I didn’t go to a concert until I was like seventeen. I told you I lived in the boon docks. The concerts I would go to were the little bands’ performances in our little town. I did go to see Jewel and Sara McLachlan: that’s because they were acceptable, although they do have some hidden lyrics and are kind of dark, my parents didn’t realize that.
What female rocker do you admire the most?
Good question. We came in contact with The Birthday Massacre, which is a cool band. I also love Terri Nunn from Berlin; Blondie, who had more heart to them and were a real band; and Fleetwood Mac, because you can tell there were soul mates in those bands.
Were you ever in a garage band before The Divine Madness?
I had my own little band. We didn’t have a drummer, but would loop beats and then play guitar, plus I had another guitarist. We didn’t have a name for the band. I was more into recording and would record all these songs on my own. I was like a one woman show. I had a really cool guitar teacher who also played bass. He taught me a lot about modes and high electrical stuff about songwriting when I was fifteen. In high school I recorded a whole CD just of my own stuff and had it done by the time I graduated. Then I went to school and started scoring songs and student projects. I got together with ensembles of people but never really had a band like this one.
How did you get into modeling?
Just for money’s sake, I mean it’s not anything I want to do because it’s as if they don’t want to know the personality. You just stand there; it’s weird, like an out-of-body experience, because they talk to you like you don’t even speak English. That’s very unimpressive to me. It’s cool because you can get money from it. I met some cool photographer that didn’t see it that way, whom I liked to work with. I always wanted a career that I can do myself, that’s why music is so much cooler than acting.
With your extensive past career being successful, is breaking into the music business with The Divine Madness a priority now?
Definitely!!! No question about it. The guys I work with are musical geniuses. I never work with people that I could never learn from. But with these guys, it’s perfect. I think it’s going to be an epic career, at least an album a year. Chris and I are completely dedicated to the whole idea and Cano is a cool guy and is very particular about his friends. He’s also like me and doesn’t jump into things. He has only been one other band that was moderately successful (The Mansions). Now he’s full speed ahead. Our fans are crazy and very supportive and totally believe in us.
Your latest EP “Precious” is excellent. Were there others recorded before this?
No, “Closer” was the first song we ever recorded together and people love it. Now we have 25 we are finishing up.
Do you have a permanent guitarist now?
Pretty permanent, but he is also in another band so we are still looking around and got some good offers. But the guy we have his solo work something we never seen. Some guitarists are about their solos not about the songs. I think it’s going to stay the three of us, and we’ll add additional guest guitarists for different shows.
In the video for “Closer,” you’re seen as a beautiful, sexual woman and show another side of yourself during the video. Which side are you more like, the wild child or the innocent?
What do you think?
I like both. I like the sensitive side in the beginning of the video where you are innocent, then you turn into one hot woman, and at the end turn back to the shy type.
(Laughing) So do I. I think more people see me as the bad girl, but my real friends see me the opposite way. That is why I put both sides of me in the video, because people rarely understand me. I like the good and evil in the video and you will see that in the Alice in Wonderland and the Queen of Hearts characters. They’re enemies but still the same person. Closer video
Were their other names that were considered for the band?
Not really, we’ve gone through some other things but nothing was set in stone. The whole band was set on that name.
You have a new CD coming out called “Secrets”. You have 20 tracks ready to go- will it be a double CD?
It might be more than 20, a double album and we are going to have some cool artwork on it. We are thinking about one side being more rock and the other side being more pretty and beautiful songs. So whatever mood you’re in, you go for that side.
A lot of bands are adding a DVD to their release. Will you be doing that?
Will you tour and play New York/New Jersey?
Of course, I think New York is going to be great. My two favorites to hit are New York and Germany.
Do you consider your music more alternative or gothic?
I would say Gothic mixed with 80’s new wave. Than again, there some other songs that will surprise you. We have a song called “Gentle” which will be another single and that one is pretty crazy and I think you will like it. We had some people test us and see if we can be hard core rockers, so we are going to give them what they want, but I always want to keep all of the pretty songs that we have also. There are a lot of rock bands out there but they don’t know how to write decent songs.
You’re going to release a double CD independently?
Yeah, we have some labels looking at us but yeah I want to release it by ourselves because I want to do it our way first. We don’t want a label to slow us down and change the idea of the band.
What is your feeling towards the other two members of the band?
Oh no, my feelings towards them. One of them is good and one is evil and naughty so you get both.
If you had to donate a million dollars to a charity, what would it be and why?
That’s a cool question. Well it would definitely not for save the animals, Sorry. Peta, I mean is not top of my priority. We like to eat rabbit (laughing)-I’m going to get in trouble for that. I think we might do our charity because then you can direct the money to the people who are really supposed to get it, like AIDS and cancer research. I would really like to give the money to human resources to all the countries that need it, but with all the corruption it would never to get to the right people. I think technology is the way to do it. We can modernize the system to get around those kinds of people.
When will the CD be out?
I really don’t know. I would say in about a month and a half.
Victoria this was an interview I never really had one like. I thank you very much. Would you like to say anything in conclusion?
The sky’s not the limit, hey thanks Brian
Victoria Mazze aka Eliza Swenson
Sagittarius; Eyes: Blue; Hair: Auburn; Height: 5'7"
The 9/11 Commission Report
King of the Lost World Lead
The Beast of Bray Road
King of Bourbon Street
The Bruthers Story
No More Dreams
Monster Magnet Video
Better with Every Drink Lead dir: Tim Larson
The Trailer Girls Co-Host/Comedian Absolute Productions
Hard Hats Co-Host Hard Hat Productions
Crimes of the Heart
Barefoot in the Park
The Philadelphia Story
Much Ado About Nothing
Scott Tyler scene study
Scott Sedita half hour comedy
Lance Williams’s contemporary scene study
R.Q. Frederickson voice and speech
Bachelor of Fine Arts from Brigham Young University (99-03)
Acting lessons for 4 years at BYU (intense scene and character study)
Voice (soprano: operatic, jazz, contemporary), Dance (swing, jazz, modern, ballet), Modeling (fitness, fashion, print), Recording artist, Guitarist (classical, electric, folk), flute, oboe, songwriter, rockclimber.