Mariana Klaveno Describes Her Journey from Farm Girl to True Blood Star

February 10, 2010 by  

Only months ago, if you had been eating at a restaurant in L.A., Mariana Klaveno might have been your waitress. Once she felt more secure in her job on a little show called True Blood, she finally quit her side-job. On the HBO series, which is now filming its third season, the actress plays Bill Compton’s maker, Lorena, the vampire who just can’t let go of the one that got away.

Photo from fOTOGLIF

In an interview with AOL Television’s PopEater, Mariana talks about what her experience as an actress has been like and how she views Lorena.

A couple of weeks ago, Mariana attended the Screen Actors Guild Awards along with the rest of the True Blood cast because of their nomination for outstanding drama ensemble. Having grown up on a wheat and barley farm in Washington, she had quite a special night:

“It was pretty surreal being on the [SAG Awards] red carpet and having Meryl Streep walk by; that’s a first. I’d never seen that before. Just being in that room with all these amazing people that I’ve looked up to for years, I suddenly felt like a wide-eyed farm girl again, which I haven’t felt in a while.”

Even though she has this wonderful part on a successful show like True Blood, Mariana doesn’t take anything for granted:

“It is strange, and it’s lovely, and I’m grateful, and I wake up saying thank you every morning — at least I try to, anyway. I think I’m actually appreciative of the years that were tough, because it makes you humble and it makes you realize that this industry is quite ephemeral and six months from now, a year from now, hopefully not…but the chances could go away and the job may be gone. I think it’s always best to keep that in mind so you don’t get too caught up.”

Mariana had that one episode in Season one, “Sparks Fly Out,” and she knew that the role had strong recurring potential. Still, she seems surprised by how much she has been able to do on True Blood. She loves that her character, through flashbacks, serves as this way of seeing what Bill’s early years were like and why he became the vampire he is in the present. In spite of all the horrible things we have seen Lorena do, Mariana thinks she has come to understand her motivation and that she might not be totally evil:

“I love that it is more complex and each vampire, there’s a lot of gray area between what they do to fulfill their needs and how they relate to the humans. I think that’s one of the brilliant things in the show. She is evil, and it’s hard because, as an actor, you can’t judge your character. I just really try to focus on the fact that she’s…I don’t think that she’s evil for no reason. She’s focused on Bill, and, as weird as it sounds, she’s motivated by love, and that’s where it comes from, and it’s obviously a different plane that the one we live in. The way I look at it is that she kind of operates from a different set of rules and, in her world, she wants what she wants and humanity is something that’s not a part of her any more and she does what she needs to get that unrequited love, which kind of makes her a tragic character, which I love. What she wants will never want her back and the reason that he doesn’t want her is what she loves in him and it’s this horrible cycle.”

Most of Lorena’s scenes are pretty dark and involve lots of blood and doing awful things to people, but Mariana insists that the mood on set is always fun and full of laughter. Most of the work she does is with Stephen Moyer, and she says he has a great sense of humor and that he’s “very witty and very smart and very quick, there’s a lot of quips that go on back and forth.” She jokes that she would like to see Lorena go spend a day at Merlotte’s so she could interact with some of the colorful characters there.

As for what Season three holds for her, she is not allowed to divulge much, other than that she is at work and that her scenes are, as you would expect, with Bill. She looks forward to adding some new elements to her character based on something she has recently read in a script:

“The writers have put just a tiny little nugget in an episode that has just been released, which I can’t say, of course…I think in this season, she may surprise you a bit. You’ll see, or you think you may, you think that she’ll do something horribly evil, and she chooses not to, which I really love, and I think it’ll maybe surprise people. Not as monstrous as maybe once perceived.”

Another interesting point that Mariana states about season 3 is that “Sookie and Bill fans are going to have some rough road up ahead.”  She mentions that we are going to see many different sides of Bill that we have not seen yet and that the writers have an interesting arc this season for him.

Mariana seems to have a lot of perspective on her character, and it will be interesting to see what she does with Lorena in the new season, whether it be in flashbacks or in present action!


(Photo credit: Albert L. Ortega / PR Photos via