Monday, January 17, 2011

I Was Asked a Question that Threw Me for a Loop

Hi Everyone,

For the past week and a half my life has been pretty hectic, with work, auditions, visiting friends and life in general.  For the first time in my acting career I had 5 auditions in one week and I was so excited.  I was excited that someone called me in!  I was excited for the opportunity to be put on camera!  I was excited that if I booked 3 or these jobs I would get paid!  Not much, but it was something.  As I went to the on camera auditions I had to remember what I learned in conservatory and also remind myself to take control of my audition.  During the first one, I forgot to take control.  During the second one I took control and I had a blast.  I was very proud of that audition.  The third audition is all about my look so I put on my makeup and dressed nicely like I normally would, except I wore boots instead of sneakers.

Then I had my theatre auditions.  One of the auditions is for the company I am member of and I am disappointed to say that I didn't bring my A-game to that sucker and I should have.  It is funny now, because I don't feel comfortable on the stage anymore like I do in front of a camera.  I lose my energy and become stiff with anxiety over cold readings on stage.  It baffles me, because I was inspired to be an actor from being on stage.  I got a rush whenever I would get a laugh or applause and now I feel stiff and unsure which is very foreign to me and I am trying to wrap my head around it.

Last night, Jen and I went to see Twelfth Night at The Knightsbridge Theatre.  I wanted to see the production and cheer on a fellow company member.  It was a wonderful production and I got a kick out of the actors that played Toby and Feste.  On the ride home, Jen asked me, "Who was your favorite  performance?" and I told her.  She then asked, "Do they inspire you?" and I got emotional when I said, "No" and realized that I have only been inspired a handful of times while here in L.A. and four of those were because of nature and the world around me, not because of a performance.   Jen then asked, "Don't you get inspired in class?" and again I replied, "No, because it is all technical.  There is only one person in my class that consistently works her ass off to give a good performance and when I watch her, I say to myself "I'm going to be better than you".  That is my inspiration.  But it isn't.  It's jealousy and competitiveness.  Which then made me realize that all classes in L.A. are technical.  How to act on camera, how to break down a scene, how to audition, how to be still and show emotional vulnerability in a closeup, but there are no classes that deal with the art of acting.  The methods of acting.  The soul of working off another and being open to what comes.

My acting has suffered.  I have to commit myself to morning exercises in meditation and character work, but all I long for is the repetition exercise from Meisner.  I miss my class in NYC and being inspired by them to be an actor.  I never felt jealous or competitive in the sense I had to be better than them.  I trusted them and I knew that if we worked hard and let ourselves be, we would be the best.  I was inspired to write, paint and create because of performances I saw in class.  When I went to a show in NYC whether it be Broadway or Off Broadway I knew it was going to be magical!  There has only been one show I have seen in Los Angeles that excited me and felt like magic!  That makes me sad.  It makes me sad, because I love NYC for reasons I didn't count on.  I miss certain aspects of it and if I go back it won't be the same.  I am sad, that Jen's question opened my eyes to what has been eating at me lately.  Sometimes it feels better to live in denial.  I love L.A. for it's own reasons too, but I am going to be 35 this year and I feel as if I need to make decisions in my life that lay down the latticework of my future and I keep going back and forth on what I want.  When will I have peace?  Why can't I be an successful actor and a woman with a husband and kids?  When I dreamt of being an actor this wasn't it.  I have never been so poor in my life.  Why is money and the lack thereof always a problem for me?  And all my life questions played in my head from Jen asking, "Do they inspire you?"