Since 2009, Lourenço Ortigão has lived many lives and played many characters. Over the years, he has played different roles, leaving the young national promise behind to rise to the same level as great actors. At the same time, he developed his old passion for cooking and opened a restaurant and an artisanal ice cream factory. On the verge of becoming a father, he serenely faces this new chapter in his life with an intimate interview filled with good humor to F Luxury.
You’ve played many characters. How do you say goodbye to them to become others?
My job is to play characters; to say goodbye to them, if possible, I go on a trip or do something of the kind that allows me to clear my head and state of mind. If this is not possible, sometimes I change my image and try to experience other situations that help me turn the page. The most difficult thing is when I have two projects at the same time, two characters that are interwoven, and then it’s more complicated.
How do you prepare to play a character?
I study as much as possible everything the character represents, his story, his feelings, what he likes or dislikes, and then I apply Marlon Brando’s technique. This, in a way, is the alignment of the chakras, which I learned at Stella Adler, an academy for actors in the United States, where various acting techniques are taught.
Soap operas have been your territory, but when you face works that are different from this register, are there other challenges?
Yes, but the works that have different registers are the ones that I enjoy the most, they are challenging and there are usually characters that escape my usual register, but that must be built from scratch, they are the ones that I like to represent the most. The roles that made me grow the most as an actor were those that were different from me. Soap operas were an option for my professional career and they gave me many opportunities, but I never say no to different roles, whether in theater or cinema. The biggest challenge is getting inside the characters’ mind, when they have nothing to do with me.
Many actors have been successful abroad. Would you like to pursue an international career?
I have never denied wanting to work in other countries, and I’m always open to participate in foreign projects. But I also never denied that I am very happy in Portugal, and I am very proud of my career as an actor.
Your life is not just acting; it is also cooking. Was this a dream or an opportunity?
I’ve always loved cooking, it’s a great passion. I am self-taught, I learned by myself from a very young age, and Villa Saboia was a dream, I always wanted to have my own restaurant. It’s something I manage to reconcile with my job as an actor, because my career as an actor is irregular in terms of pace, I can work at two hundred percent or be in between filming, and the fact that I have other businesses gives me a greater stability and I can focus on other issues rather than just working as an actor. Above all, more than a business that makes me earn money, it is a learning experience while I run the restaurant; it’s been six years and I hope it continues for many more.
What happens when you take charge of the kitchen and what is the most thing you like to do?
I love to cook. When I prepare a dish, I like to concentrate, to be alone, to have a glass of wine, I don’t mind having someone talking to me, but I don’t like other people to interfere. People have a lot of opinions when we’re cooking, and I don’t like them to interfere, unless I ask for help. I used to be known for making excellent risottos, nowadays I make almost everything except desserts, they are not really my thing.
Your most recent project is an ice cream factory. Is there any reason you believe it’s a good investment?
It’s true, I have an ice cream and dessert factory; It’s a business model that’s a little different from the usual, we work with the Horeca channel, b2b, that is, we sell to restaurants and hotels, we don’t sell directly to the final consumer, except through Villa Saboia. This segment has always thrilled me. There was also a well-known brand of ice cream in the restaurant, but we felt that it was not quite at the level of what we wanted to offer customers and the opportunity arose to buy an artisanal ice cream company. This business is now four years old; I believe we have already supplied forty restaurants, all of them pleased with the quality, and the idea is to continue to grow gradually. I take this opportunity to say that, if you need ice cream or desserts for your restaurants, we’ll be glad to make them for you. This is my entrepreneurship calling showing. (laughs)
You will soon be a father. How are you living this moment?
With a lot of happiness and a lot of serenity at the same time. It’s something I’ve wanted for a long time. But, above all, both Kelly and I want a healthy child and after he/she is born, we’ll think about the rest. We don’t care if we have a boy or a girl; we just want he/she to be healthy. We are very happy.
In terms of future projects, what can we expect from you?
We still don’t know very well what will happen, but I’m not too worried. Kelly and I are living the pregnancy 100%, so my mind is in the house, but if an interesting project comes up, I’ll embrace it. I’ve just finished filming Opto channel’s miniseries Lúcia, a Guardiã do Segredo.
F Luxury is celebrating its anniversary. Would you like to leave a few words of congratulations?
Of course, yes, many congratulations on this special date. It’s a great pleasure to be able to make this cover, which we’ve been planning for a few years now; finally, the opportunity arose. I hope you like the result, that you continue to buy F Luxury and that it lasts for many, many years. And many congratulations to Fátima Magalhães and the whole team.