Saturday, December 31, 2016

Your Badass Self

I've been reminded twice this December to bring out my Badass self. 

For my husband's birthday, some friends and I went in on The Bad-Ass Bitches Museum Tour at The Met, designed by the folks at Museum Hack.

My husband had gone on a corporate tour and raved about how much he wanted to go with our friends, so we made it happen! I even designed the poster (above).

It was a BLAST! Our tour guides were two fabulously funny women who were passionate about art, Lily and Bex:

The tour focused on female artists. One of my new favorites is Rosa Bonheur, who's the portrait in the above left pic with Lily. She painted herself into her masterpiece, The Horse Fair (below). She's the "lad" in blue with the cap (center), facing the audience. She petitioned for and won a permit in 19th century Paris to wear pants since it was against the law for women to be in anything but dresses.

I also was riveted by Artemisia Gentileschi's paintings. She had been raped, and in her work she showed women like Judith, taking back their power:

She turned a tragedy into a triumph.

So what do I want to take into the New Year?

As Bonnie Gillespie tweeted, 

"There's a future version of me out there who’s a badass at this. I don’t get to meet her if I stop showing up.”

For me, that means keeping strong with acting classes and practicing on-camera work. I also want to write. I see so much of this world cinematically, and I have stories to tell.

Matt Newton gave us homework to write a scene this summer, and he liked my piece so much, he said I should send it to ABC/NBC's diversity contest next year. Well, that's tomorrow, so here I go! 

Last night, I worked on my business plan from Bonnie's free program called "Get In Gear for the New Year. The program is AWESOME! Seriously, every actor should check it out because it will change your life! The homework cultivates a sense of self-awareness and community, as you're sharing your tools and knowledge with other actors in #SMFANinjas.
So I've got daily tasks to do to help me create momentum.

My badass self is strong, fearlessly funny and focused, so it's time to bring that to the table.

Hope you all have a kickass New Year!

Monday, December 12, 2016


I was already thinking about this year in review when Bonnie Gillespie inspired me with the idea of "firsts."

This year, I booked my first role in an independent feature film. I played a Suze Orman-type motivational speaker in 39 and a half.

The director, Kara Herold, asked if I could improvise mid-way through, so I started playing with the audience, asking them questions about what motivated them and then riffing off of their answers. Kara said, "I think we have type-casting here!"

I got my first tweet as the "facebook celebrity" of the day by PPI Recording Studio. I've been fortunate to do a lot of delicious recordings there for new musicals.

This year was my first exposure to the musical, "Do Re Mi," which ran on Broadway in 1960. I played Kay in the Off Broadway revival by Musicals Tonight, and re-teamed with my Sasquatched director Donald Brenner and co-star Patrick John Moran.

Marc Miller of NY Theatre Guide wrote, "One doubts even the great (Nancy) Walker, for whom the part was written, could have done much better... (Laura) Daniel, expertly mixing the affection and skepticism in Kay also has a huge Act Two Number, 'Adventure.' She belts it out of the park!"

I was photographed at the New Filmmakers Festival. Even though I won the Craft Award for Sincerely Yours and had been to a film fest for Laundry, it was my first time being photographed, which was fun! 

                                                        At the screening of  "Tick Tock."

I played my first few "ladies of indeterminate age" or strange wise women. One was a Minnesotan cat lady in Pageant Princess the Musical. And the other was the narrator in Joe Gulla's play, "Sleeping with the Fish."

It's also the first year I became politically active. I never knew I had it in me, but there have been such disturbing events this year, we have to take a stand and help each other out. 

Here's hoping 2017 allows us all to bloom and grow beautifully. As Shonda Rhimes said, it can be the "Year of YES!