Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Great Gradations!

gradation - noun - any process or change taking place through a series of stages, by degrees, or in a gradual manner.

I feel like I've graduated in a way, and yet it seems too early to talk about caps and gowns, especially since I have a bunch of classes on the horizon.

This just feels like such an incredible time of great change for me. Yesterday I went to an audition for the play, Speech and Debate by Stephen Karam. Because I am a petite actress, I've often played young adults for what feels like forever. And I'm not knocking this. Hey! I made it to final callbacks for Sally Brown in Snoopy, so obviously, it's a niche! And for this play, I'm probably a "tweener" (in-between the ages of the characters, and could be cast either way), so I decided to embrace my full-grown womanhood and read for The Teacher. It was a bold choice but felt... FULL. And I received great response from the director on my audition, which was wonderfully encouraging.

It was just such a cool feeling, working to my satisfaction, making bold choices for the character in the short amount of time I got to know her (we were cold-reading scenes from the script). I truly felt like I graduated from "student" to "teacher" in that moment. It was so empowering!

And yet this year I have immersed myself in my studies. It started with the Monologue Audition workshop with Karen Kohlhaas at The Atlantic Theatre School. I wanted to take more classes at ATS but our schedules weren't in sync, so I contacted one of Karen's recommendations, Deloss Brown, a former Juilliard teacher, and will be diving into his 7-week Shakespeare workshop. As one of my favorite actors from Slings and Arrows once said (and I'm paraphrasing), "If you can do Shakespeare, you can do anything." His work is timeless, and I love it!

So as I continue to "walk my talk" and put my work out there, learning from each audition, and working on new material, I have this feeling of "lift-off," of incredible growth, and it is indeed worth celebrating.

"You've got to build your foundation and get out there, because no class is going to teach you what auditioning and performing will teach you." - Karen Kohlhaas

4.........3......... 2........ 1...

BLAST OFF!!!!! :)

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