Saturday, October 30, 2010


Lately I've become obsessed with the whole act of how people communicate to each other. As an actor, our job is to tell the story to the audience through our body, words, emotions, actions, and point of view. Sometimes we're really good at it, sometimes we just plain suck. It's not just what we communicate, but how we do and what we intend and accidentally do at the same time.
We get in our own way. Actors don't trust our audiences. We try so hard to show them what they should be hearing and feeling. By doing this, the only thing they feel is "My God, this is bad acting". Because of the training I'm involved in now, I break down communicating and responding to its simplest form. The easiest way to do this is to think about how you communicate to your closest friends and family members. What's the difference between a happy couple and a couple that fights all the time? The ability to understand what the other person is trying to accomplish at any given moment. I see couples fight on campus and it always comes down to two things: either they just can't understand what the other person is trying to communicate to them and they get frustrated or they are receiving the communication and aren't having anything to do with it. That's all anger is. A level of emotion that erupts because you have a feeling inside you that has lost. Anger is a losing product. Once anger is introduced to a situation, no communication will be received from that moment on. We resist listening when someone gets angry and blocking them out. Watch a show or movie, is the actor just yelling at the other one? Boring. Are they trying to get something and using every tactic possible to get the other person to understand? If so, good job.
On the flip side, watch a happy couple. Actions given and received with hardly any effort. It's because the communication is understandable, accepting, and specific. Even if it's not specific, the receiver gets the general idea and knows what to do with it. That's why inside jokes and bits between people work so well. It brings up a comfortableness that tells the other person, hey remember those feelings when......
Holding hands. Just looking in someone's eyes. A hug. Laying down with someone and just cuddling. Million of messages are sent every second when two people understand each other and accept what is given. That's what we want as actors. Instead of working so hard, we should just be able to be neutral vessels that respond honestly and actively at every given second.
Why do people become best friends? The communication between them is at a level where everything is flowing between them and it's accepted unconditionally. As friends, if the communication is not understood, they have the bond that allows them to communicate to the other that their communication is fuzzy and by communicating like adults, it can be resolved.
What are fake friends? People held together by false pretenses will fight because the other person does not genuinely communicate well or are resistant to the other's communication. How many people fight at a bar. Why??? Because the alcohol has inhibited their ability to communicate and think rational. That's all it is. I see people who I know I would hate going out with because every night is going to end in a fight. You know those people! Why? Think about it. They get selfish. Want everything their way. Hate everything that other people do..... in other words.... lose all ability to communicate.
Why is someone a great artist? They have found a way to communicate whatever they are trying to do in a way that the masses understand. In a specific way. In an unusual way. But all of them are able to communicate and thats what makes them so popular. Know those artists who say "no one understands my art!!!" Yeah, because you haven't found the right way to tell me yet. It's still inside. It isn't able to get out.
In studio, we are finding ways to powerfully communicate in simple ways like breath, blinking, a turn of the head, a tension in the wrist, walking tempo, a pitch in the voice, or a certain body posture. Of course those are wonderful things to know about the body, but sometimes communication can come in beautiful mediums that speak volumes like a text that says "hi". A postcard from my mom that says "I hope you're doing better". A hand on your back when you put your head down in disgust. A hug. A shake. A kiss. Stroking someone's hair with the intention of "I'm here for you and everything is going to be fine". A smile. A smirk. Eye contact from across the room that has enough subtext to write a novel. These all work because the giver is in full command of what they are trying to communicate and the receiver has full availability to receive those actions.
So does that make sense? It doesn't? Well I've communicated myself perfectly. You must just suck as a listener!

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Ghosts of Christmas Pasts

Through my rough times lately, a lot of people have been sending me quotes that in so many words say this: Forget the past, don't live in the past, don't fret the future, you have no control of the future, live in the now cause it's a that's cute, you can only control where you are right now. On paper, I mean, on computer..who owns paper makes sense, but I have spent many hours thinking about that and why it's so hard.
First, if a man is the sum of his actions, how can we forget the past? I think the reason it's so hard for me to let go of the past is because everything in my past has made me who I am right now. If someone hurts me, I would love to just erase that person from my life, but by erasing that period of time I feel like I'm giving no credit to what I lived through and the choices I made in that period. Like it was a waste of time.
Second, don't fret the future. Ok, but I need money in the future. If I have dreams and goals I want to accomplish, I need to make decisions now that will help those goals come to fruition. So if I don't care about the future,I don't need to care about today, right?
Finally, live for the now. Well what if now fucking sucks?
I guess I can just try to live each moment the best I can, but if I'm not worried about the future, then I can spend all my money today. So I'm going to go buy a rickshaw. Why not? The future will take care of itself no matter what I decide to do. I could die and the days will just keep going on. The past has already happened. And wow, I wish I could get a lot of those times back. The good ones and the bad ones. Am I supposed to forget the bad ones and keep the good ones, well that's pretty prejudice. Shouldn't I learn from my mistakes? Geez, I don't know if there's a text book that's big enough to teach those lessons.
I want to wake up and smile. Well, that's worried about the future. Should I want to smile right now? I'm too tired. I'd rather be sleeping. I hope the Indians are good next season. That's worried about the future, so should I hope they're good now? Well, they're not. They're really really not.
I've decided I'm not going to do my homework, tomorrow will take care of itself. And I maybe got a F on a test yesterday, oh well, maybe my professor won't live in the past.
I'm trying to leave my baggage at the door when I come in, but it's duct taped to my leg and 17 handcuffs are attached to it and me. That's the past. The baggage doesn't have to be opened, but it makes me a little bit heavier and I sometimes have trouble accessorizing it. And the damn thing sometimes makes me owe the airlines extra money when I check in. For those who aren't keeping up, the joke is it's emotional baggage and I'm personifying it!!! Ha ha ha.
I need to sleep now, so tomorrow I don't fall asleep in the middle of a handstand. Tomorrow??????? Not worried about it.

Monday, October 25, 2010

Why Improv is Everything

I started acting when I was 11 years old. For years I learned how to walk on the stage, not run into scenery, how to memorize lines, sing, learn the difference between stage left and stage right, house left and house right, back stage, front of house, and how to bow. The problem with all of this was that for the next 11 years, I was forming muscle memories in my body that was doing a lot of it wrong. I moved to NY and walked into auditions, classes, and rehearsals just doing the same thing I had done the previous 11 years, and it only got me so far. I wasn't having fun on stage anymore. I wasn't being pushed. There were times in class and in performance that everything seemed to be going right and I was having fun, and looking back on those times, I realize I was doing just one thing....... following my instincts and making it up on the spot.
Improv. I couldn't name it at that time. I didn't even know the longer form of the word: improvisation. There are many different definitions of improv and venues for this miraculous art form. You can't even look up the word in a dictionary without it using some form of improv in the definition. Improvisation: The art of performing improv. No shit. To me it's this definition- Improv: The art of performing that makes other forms of performing seem boring. I then found the Atlantic Theater Company which in so many words is performing a script through improvisational techniques. Then I found Upright Citizen's Brigade which would change my life forever.
I think I get easily bored in life. I like stimulation. I don't think I have ADD, I just love new exciting things. If I was in a show for over 300 times and I had to give the exact same performance every night, I would shoot myself. I know scripts have a structure and we stay true to them, but if I had to channel my talents to one thing, it would be not knowing what was going to happen and live confidently in that. Improv.
I have friends who say the scariest thing they could ever do is get on stage with nothing but a suggestion and then make up a show for the next 40 minutes. I could masturbate to the thought of that. My God, what a rush! Why? Because life is tough and shouldn't be taken seriously and artists, directors, and actors get so in their head that they want everything to be perfect. Why perfect? Life is sloppy. Sex is sloppy. Money is sloppy. Relationships are sloppy. So why wouldn't an art form that cherished the unpredictability and chaos of the world be golden?
And nothing gets me off more than extremely talented and intelligent improvisers making unbelievable, crafty choices every second that leaves the audience laughing and shocked. It's how I see the world. Everyone is so careful and doesn't care about the other person anymore. Improv is the exact opposite of careful and the best way to do it is when all of your attention is on the other person........ Oh wait.......... that is sort of like acting.
That's why I hated doing theater for awhile. It was too safe. It wasn't creative. Actors just wanted to get in any show, no matter how bad it was, make safe choices, not care about the other actors and creative process, and try to get involved with the gossip and drama of backstage. I hated it. I got in this business to have fun, and everything about improv was fun. There are rules in improv but at the same time, there are no limits. You can get the same feeling in a scripted show when you enter stag with no preconceived decisions. And it's all based on trust. Trust in yourself and trust in the other actor. Why would I want to be part of a career that you walk on like a robot and do the same thing every night......unless you're a robot from outer space who has to drink Dairy Queen milkshakes every night. Well that would just be awesome.
I love a scenario where the possibilities are endless. That's where the excitement comes from. We live life way too safe! Actors have problems with human interaction. Improvisers need to explore every moment of every second with every person they meet. Improvisers are actors, playwrights, directors, and reactors all at the same time. Mostly reactors to what is happening at any given moment, which is the main ingredient I have taken from my UCB training and put into my craft.
When I watch an acting scene, I can sometimes watch the entire scene without checking in. It's impossible for me to watch an improv scene without listening to every single line and watching every single movement. Because it is the thing every actor wants to achieve. To be in the moment at every given second, and that's what improv is, especially good improv. That's what's exciting. Even when the script is written out, some actors can't find truthful moments, but if I put you in front of 100 people and you're fighting for your life in front of them to be creative and funny, you'll find moments. You'll create moments. You'll follow moments. You'll listen to everything listening for clues. You'll become vulnerable just by walking. You'll create relationships just by looking at someone. That's what I was missing in theater. That's what I have brought to theater. I want the world to improvise. I'm sure I'm going to write more about this soon. My head is spinning right now.

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Quotes I've Been Living By Lately

A lot has happened in the past few months and sometimes what people say and quotes they give you help get through the day a little bit easier. Here are a few of them:

"Don't do the same thing over and over again expecting different results" -Albert Einstein (yeah, he sent me this via text message)

"Every choice you make will either bring you closer to your goal or further away from it" -Jason Nettle (smart guy)

"It is necessary to let go of something in order to receive something in its place. It is about letting go of the old energy and allowing a new paradigm and energy to enter into your reality, into your way of being, into your way of responding to life. In this way do you realize that all experience is opportunity for growth, for expansion of awareness and coming to know what this physical game is really all about..."

"Life is hard. It's more than hard-it's a bitch. I suppose that's why I like the person who spends more time working than on facebook, the person who gets out there and lives his life rather than blogging about it or staring in the mirror wondering about anything so damn inconsequential as looks or hair or yesterday. ...The future is now. It's time to grow up and be strong. Tomorrow may well be too late." Neil Labute (thank you Kayla) (usually Neil is saying mean stuff, so this is nice)

"We're all going to die someday" - David Lee

" Do you wake up every day surrounded by someone or people who make you the happiest you can be? That challenge you to be the best person you can be? If not, Why?" - Jason Nettle

"Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate.
Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure.
It is our light, not our darkness, that most frightens us.
We ask ourselves, who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, and fabulous?
Actually, who are you not to be?
You are a child of God.
Your playing small doesn't serve the world.
There's nothing enlightened about shrinking so
that other people won't feel insecure around you.
We are all meant to shine, as children do.
We are born to make manifest the glory of God that is within us.
It's not just in some of us, it's in everyone.
And as we let our own light shine,
we unconsciously give other
people permission to do the same. " - Marianne Williamson

Sunday, October 17, 2010

A Typical Week

I can't believe we're at midterms. My training is split into 4 semesters and I'm half way done with one of them. It feels like I've been here for 2 years already. The first month was dedicated to learning the psyche of a pedophilia and figuring out where the student union was.... 2 things that didn't have any relation to each other. I'm now into more a daily groove and I've gotten a lot of emails asking how school is going. So let me see if I can give you a general overview.
Monday: Wake up before 7 am to finish any homework that I didn't get done with over the weekend, which keep reading and you'll see why. I'm pretty tired at this point because I woke up about 7 times throughout the night. One main reason is because I sleep with the fan on and the windows open because by turning the central air off, I save enough money a month to be able to eat. But then I think if I sweat enough, I'll lose weight as if it's a sauna so I can save money on my gym membership. Also, I live next to the dumpster so maybe I can snack out of that and turn the air on and sleep comfortably. So many options. My fellow MFA partner, Kelly lives in my complex with her husband, comes over at 7:45 and we ride together in the morning. We are comfortable enough now that we give each other a forced smile and a grunt upon seeing each other to say good morning. We drive mostly in silence past the Vampire baby orthodontics sign and go pick up Lauren. We drive to campus, passing the mother pushing her daughter who is WAY to big for the stroller, turn the corner, wave to Lauren's crossing guard boyfriend and get to campus. 8:30 is our first class. Movement. The goal of this class is to bring ourselves to a completely neutral place. Many factors play into the tension we hold everyday, the muscular habits we are not aware of, and the fact that we are only using 20% of our breath with purpose. For an hour we do core work, headstands, breathing exercises, release tension that I didn't know I was carrying for 34 years, group ensemble exercises, postural manipulation, and of course, front rolls and dives. In future postings, I'll go into detail what each of these things do and how I am growing because of them, but this is just for the overview. Second is Voice and Diction class at 9:30. It is physical day which means we'll get our body into a completely tension free state, release all holding on, and let sound and emotions vibrate through our bodies while listening to beautiful music and finding what it's like to not censor or judge anything that arises from our deepest soul. We are doing this while the construction workers are putting the finishing touches on the building. They might bleed from the skin, but we bleed from the soul. I like to call this class "dealing with my breakup class". We get a quick break and all head up to the grad office and eat whatever lunch or snack we have. We have purchased a microwave and Be has put her masters degree certificate in the office, so it really feels like a college setting. At 11, we go to acting and because what happens in that room stays in that room, I can't go any further into that. That's where we make our leaps. We tear apart our weaknesses. We tear apart our strengths. It's the class that is the escalator to becoming the next Kevin Kline or Meryl Streep. We have already done Closer and Death and the Maiden in class and now Josh and I start tackling The Pillowman this week. At 1 pm, we have another 30 minute break and sometimes I run to the student union and get Chic Fil A because I sweat that money out of my system the night before. If not, I'll stop by the sperm bank on the way there, which will just make me hungrier. At 1:30, we head to Research and Methods class in the music building, because that is way too much heady stuff for a theater building. It is in this class that my ulcer flares up and I involuntarily sweat all over my papers. We are learning the scholarly approach to writing, studying, and getting our thesis projects in motion. This is the class that my GRE vocabulary is needed. And what is MLA? Did I ever use that? I am now! This is the stereotypical college discussion class that we discuss art, the future of art, our lives in art, and the state of our world. It's usually never much of a positive outcome. 3pm. 30 minute break. I am a TA for the junior directing class with David Lee and usually I leave that class at 5:30 inspired, disgruntled, and wanting more. David has his students do more in this class than I did in 4 years of undergrad. His passion for life, theater, creativity, and education touches every one of his students and his old TA that sits next to him. My question is, do these kids know this, or is it nice hearing someone close to my age talking to me about something I have lived inside for years? I don't know. Day is done. For a month I used to take a nap in the grad office or go to the gym before rehearsal, but tonight, I'll work on my Book Review that is due in Research and Methods in 2 weeks.
Tuesday: Light day. 7:45. We grunt. Drive. "Hello vampire girl" . "Hello way too big girl" and "Hello Lauren's boyfriend"! We get to school, put all the mats together, and depending on your day, you stretch, warmup, or try to get 10 minutes of sleep. Front rolls, front dives, core work. Done. Voice and Diction. Today is Diction day. Kate explains to us how to use our lips and tongue and breath. You think you know it, but you don't. We say words correctly for the first time in years. Her energy is contagious. Her examples make me strive harder to be a better speaker and performer. Vowels, consonants, and words and we're done at 10:30. Personal rehearsal time and what ever else you can fill your time for the rest of the day. I TA a sophomore acting class at 2:30 and by just listening, Mark teaches me things I have either forgotten or never knew.
Wednesday: Grunt grunt. Too many grunts because then I feel awkward around her husband. She's in rehearsals for Dracula so her nights are busy just like mine were last month. Kelly and I discuss doing a 2 person play together if we don't get cast next semester. Movement, Voice, Acting, and Research and Methods keep our day filled till 3 pm. At the end of each day, our MFA class usually have made 3-4 more inside jokes which is tough because we forget all the ones from last week.
Thursday: All the MFA's get to the parking lot and pile into my car, all 8 of us. Why? who cares. We only live once. Only Movement and Voice today. I have to stick around after because I TA the acting class at 2:30, so I always have to find something to keep me busy which is never hard to do. Homework, homework, reading, writing, homework, script work, memorization, singing, gym, homework, network, read, eat, research, homework, stretch, more script work, memorize something else, grunt, eat, homework, and then uh, eat. When I say eat, I really mean, walking behind someone who is eating and scrambling for the crumbs.
Friday: TGIF!!! Hello vampire girl, big girl, and crossing's Friday!!! We park, throw grapes at Josh's car, and move and then speak. And done! EXCEPT....I have to TA at 3:30 so I have to keep myself busy until then. I might go look at Be's diploma as motivation. She probably doesn't know it, but it actually is.
Here is my philosophy that I have learned. If I want to succeed in all of my goals that I placed before I got here, I should never feel like I have nothing to do. There is ALWAYS something to do. Read , read, read. When was the last time you met an actor who knew everything there was to know to make them the most successful they could possibly be? If I have an hour break, I read a new script. I write. Some might call it distracting myself from dealing with things in life, but if that's the case, so what. By June of 2013, I want to be one of the most informed actors in the country. I live for the future. Every day. Every single thing I do makes me a better person, actor, and student. I take nothing for granted. Who knows, one day I might write a movie about Vampire orthodontist girl.
Saturday & Sunday: Cook, clean, vacuum, OSU football, read, write, laundry, dishwasher, homework, gym, sweat, throw out the rotten stuff in the fridge, and try to sleep.

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Uh oh

It's one of those days where I shake my head, put my hands in my pocket, shuffle my sneakers across the rocks, and giggle just enough to make my upper back convulse a bit. I'm an artist. Damn it. An artist. Someone should only be an artist if they would die if they didn't do it. Crap. I don't know what else I would do. I have many hobbies, but damn it. An Artist.
The negative connotation to that is I have accepted that life will never be easy for me and that is getting out of my comfort zone and that kills me inside. Artists don't retire, they just die. Am I cursed with this? Am I lucky? As my friends kiss their wives and husbands goodbye, kiss their kids goodbye, get in their car, pull out of the garage of their house, drive to work where they'll make more this year than I will in 5 years, put money in their retirement fund, look at all the great places they're going to vacation to this summer, I sit in a classroom, a practice room, a studio, a movie set, a stage......... and try to make some sense out of this chaos of the world. I do exercises in class that would make 98% of humans feel stupid, with the objective of becoming a neutral, free spirit that can communicate depths of human feelings and emotions that they can't witness at their job that they make 5 times more than I do.
Why? I was born this way. Nature or nurture? I don't know. I was put on this earth to make life better for other people. I try to take the negativity in the world and turn it to make a positive. I strive to make my friends and strangers better people and live up to the potential that every single one of us possess.
That's what separates the artists from the actors. Actors like curtain calls, award shows, and reality shows. Artists want to show a vision of the human spirit without glorifying the dumbing down of a nation that we so easily do.
Americans don't like to feel. We don't like to fail. We don't like to succeed. We get scared of success. We get scared of being judged. We get hate being invincible. We hate being third class. We never let anyone see us cry. We don't like the loud person on the train. We'd rather watch Jersey Shore than read Dickens. If we forget our phone, we have failed for the day.
We like to stay neutral and average, because then we're safe.
I hate feeling

Monday, October 11, 2010

Goal #1

To read a script every other day until Christmas. Im ashamed of my knowledge of dramatic literature. I know a lot, but it's not even close to where I want to be.
Goal #2 will probably have something to do about every movie that I have been putting off seeing until I have time. Well, I have 2-3 years to get my ass in gear. This shit starts now. The only person who is going to disappoint me now is myself.

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Question #2

Remember on Oct 5th, 2005 when that person asked you, "Where do you want to be in 5 years?" So, how'd that go? It doesn't matter if you reached your goal, because most of us probably didn't, because now I'm going to give you 5 years until i ask the question again. Your challenge is: What have you learned in the last 5 years that will help you reach those goals? What did you fail at? What did you succeed in? How much conflict in your life keeps you from getting there? Who in your life is going to help you get there? Who challenges you? Who makes you a better person? Who hinders you? Who makes you be less of the person you are meant to be? What are you going to do tomorrow to help you get there? Next week? All month?
Who do you want to be in 5 years? Life is full of choices. It's your job to make the right ones and avoid the wrong ones. You will make wrong ones, 29 year old Jason had no clue how many wrong decisions he'd make, but learn from them. Never do them again. Spread your wings and fly to heights no one who knows you knew you were capable of. I'm giving you 5 years. Don't procrastinate. Change the world tomorrow.

Monday, October 4, 2010


If someone posed this question to you, how would you respond? "There are 2000 other actors who are trying to have the same career you are. There is only one spot available. Do you feel like you're doing EVERYTHING you can do to leave no doubt that you will fill that empty slot and leave all 1,999 behind you?" This isn't a trick question. I'm really asking you this. I actually made the number smaller, there are actually 7,000 other actors trying. Have a good day.

Sunday, October 3, 2010

A Letter from Someone Who has Been There

What did you get on your SAT? GRE? What part did you play in that one show in college, you know that one....what was the name of it? What grade did you get on your scene your first semester in your sophomore year? When you auditioned for that Broadway show, how much did the fact that your Junior year voice teacher gave you a B on your speech project affect your audition? I can't answer one of these questions. My point is, as a 34 year old grad student of acting, grades and acceptance don't mean shit when you get out of school. All that you can take with you is your experience.
In the 6 weeks that I have been taking and teaching classes, I have heard more students talk about how things will be graded, what is "the amount" of something to get an A, and they don't want to do something wrong while they perform or upset the teacher because that's not what they want. I have heard countless times a student ask the professor if "it's ok if I do this" when it is in direct correlation with their creativity and exploration. Sometimes I check the front of the building and make sure I didn't accidentally walk into the Math building instead of the Theater building.
How in the hell do you grade creativity, exploration, feelings, vulnerability, expansion of the mind, trusting oneself to fail miserably and know they only benefit from it in the end, strengthening of confusion, breaking of bad habits, breaking of good habits, trying something that you've never tried before, taking a big shit on the stage and wondering where that will lead to, and in the end, going to sleep that night a better artist than you woke up as? This would be the trouble with putting an education/degree stamp on art. The professors have to have a scale to judge and further the student's academic achievement record. They need to submit a letter grade, something from A-F that tells the world what type of student they are in that particular class. Can you see where this bothers me?
I came back to school because I had issues with my acting. I had serious issues with my craft. I had issues with my previous instructors. I had issues with my auditioning. I had issues with my book and repertoire. Sadly, the LAST thing on my mind right now is grades. An unlimited amount of A's will not bring me closer to this goal. Although, by achieving these goals, an "A" will most likely be waiting for me because it shows progress and execution. I've been out in the war. I have fought in battles that ranged from EPA's to Chorus Calls to Agent submissions. I NEED. I NEED. I NEED. I WANT. I WANT. I WANT. I HAVE TO HAVE. I HAVE TO EMBRACE what it takes to become the greatest actor and student of this art in my time here. The only way to do that is to walk in each day and look at the walls as just metaphors of what can suppress you and limit my creativity. Would it bother me more to get an F or get an F because I just didn't get it. If I succeeded in all aspects of what I was trying to accomplish and still received an F, that would suck on a couple different levels. Because I could get kicked out of school? Or get kicked out of school with some knowledge that will propel me into a stratosphere that few other artists have? Or get a safe B+ without challenging myself and pushing my limits? If not, why the fuck am I here?
I watch countless scenes and work by students who make every safe choice known to man. It comes down to they are afraid to fail. They are afraid to disappoint the professor. They are afraid to look bad in front of their peers who just got praise in the scene before. They are afraid to be vulnerable. Than why the fuck be here??! We are artists. Our souls belong on the table for people to crush, spit on, urinate on, make love to , and be held in order to never let any harm come to it. In order to become a true artist, you have to answer the question, "I would not be able to survive if I wasn't able to create and make art for others to experience, whether they love it or hate it". If the answer is yes, you're half the way there. If the answer is no, find out why. It doesn't mean you have to quit, but find that driving force that makes you want to be in a profession with 30,000 other people who are as talented and more talented than you and spend most of your life just wanting. Wanting more. Wanting what you might never have. There is a reason why there are WAY too many actors out there, because it can be safe. If the actors who are "way above average" in their craft stayed in the business, the numbers would decrease to 3,000.
These are the years we explore. These are the years we challenge ourselves. These are the years we fail so badly that it takes a Dairy Queen milkshake to pick up our spirit. If you plan on moving to NY or LA, there is no time for exploring there. You show up and do your job. It's what you've worked years on to get ready. It's like Roger Federer. He spent years just hitting forehands and backhands so that now, at the height of his game, he knows what he's doing. He goes out there, he doesn't think, and he's really freaking good. He has to fine tune things from time to time, but he's out there, floating from moment to moment and his body and mind know what to do. That's what we should strive for. We are learning to hit forehands and backhands, but don't just try to get 8 out 0f 10 in the court because it will get you a good grade, study each shot. How did it feel? What could you have done to make it better? What would happen if you just tried this slight alteration? If you're lost in my comparison between tennis and acting, let's get you back on track.
Every time you step in front of the class, it is not a performance!!! Performance is for paying patrons and you get flowers after. You are with students who are just as scared as you are. If they're judging you, they suck as human beings and they suck as artists. They're not worth your time. It is your responsibility to do the best that you are capable of and learn from every goddamn thing that is said to you by your instructor in order to MAKE YOU BETTER, NOT AS A PUT DOWN!
And most importantly, have fun. If you're not having fun. Get the hell off of my stage and stop wasting everyone's time. If this is agony for you, you might as well go to the medical building and study there because they are in agony, but they're going to make a shit load of money when they're all done. It's fun. We all got in this business for a reason. We're all going to have bad days, but our worst days are other peoples' best days. Love one another. Be good people. Be good friends. Be good boyfriends and girlfriends, wives, husbands, fathers and mothers, and thank your higher being that you have been blessed with what you have.