Archive | January, 2012

Day Job(s)

30 Jan

A huge part of becoming a working actor is, of course, being a working-something-else in order to survive until we can make money doing what we love. Many opt for the waiting/catering gig, which has flexibility and good money- two very necessary things as an actor. I’ve attempted hosting, but never serving because, well, I just don’t think I’m cut out for restaurants after being around them for so long (my mom, aunt and grandparents all owned restaurants). Instead, I pay the bills by working not one, but THREE day jobs, and I’m slowly adding another to the list, but one that could potentially grow into something perfect.

1. Website Editor/Manager

I oversee about 40-50 (virtual) teen interns on a parenting website and manage the website.

2. Personal/Administrative Assistant

I do the company payroll, weekly schedule, event contracts, and other miscellaneous tasks for a professional international dance company.

3. High School Theater Director

I teach after school theater, direct plays, sub acting classes, and oversee the performance poetry ensemble.

4. Rolly & Matilda ETSY Shop! 

And last but not least, my latest Day Job, is my boyfriend and my vintage clothing Etsy store! We just started it, but are really enjoying the process. It’s great because, it allows us to be creative (in choosing the items, styling the outfits, taking the photos, etc), use similar marketing skills we learn to utilize for our acting careers (creating a brand, spreading the word via social media, consistent promotion, etc) and allows flexibility (we can make our own schedules).

In a perfect world,Rolly & Matilda could be my only day job so that my mind doesn’t explode with all it has going on (juggling 3 jobs, rehearsals, auditions, family, friends… life! Don’t get me wrong, I am grateful to have all these things. It just get’s a little jumbled in my head!) But only one way to find out is to go for it (just like acting!), so there it is. It feels good to have new projects, especially ones that excite me and that I’ve been thinking and talking about for so long. Making more dreams come true….

Starting off on the Right Foot

17 Jan

Like a lot of people during the month of January, I’ve been doing some reflecting, re-evaluating and looking forward.  I started a running list of what I want my 2012 to be about, some directly related to acting, some not, but all under the same goal of honoring Me. Seems a little selfish, but sometimes you have to be. What I mean is, doing things that I want to do not have to do, doing things that make me happy and feed my soul, fulfilling my passions and dreams, enjoying this journey every step of the way– basically, having an overall positive outlook.

A lot of it has to do with language I use: getting rid of  should’s and shouldnt’s and have to’s and replacing them with like to’s, want to’s and choose to’s. More active, less passive. I also think that a more active, there-are-things-in-my-control, perspective will result in a more proactive year. The less you make projects and activities chores, and the more you make them fun then the more likely you will do them! For instance, I kinda hate submitting. I’d think of it as something I have to do if I want to be an actor. But, throw on a little music, imagine the different roles I now have the chance at playing, and it’s kind of fun!

So, going along with the doing things that make me happy and feed my soul, one of the items on my list is to do more theater I love. In other words, not worrying about pay vs no pay, industry audience vs. family and friends, potential connections vs. none at all, or even theater vs. film. Theater was what got me here to begin with. Anyway, I got what I wanted! I am starting off the year with two wonderful shows. The first, in February at Casa 0101, is called Occupy the Heart, a short play festival exploring the Occupy Wall Street movement. The second, in March at the Lyric Hyperion, is a new rendition of the Vagina Monologues, including an original ensemble-created piece. Not to mention both shows are with very cool people I like. I think I’m off to a good start!

The Big Break

9 Jan

No, not the kind that makes you famous over night; the kind that gives you a breather, time to reflect, time to relax. In a similar post last year, I wrote that actors need vacations, too. And it’s true! So much of this career is go-go-go with no real defining markers, like vacation time or company meetings or whatever else marks time. Half the time I don’t even know what day it is.

Anyway, the past two weeks were somewhat of a whirlwind of a break from all that is acting. A little Mexico, Palm Springs and San Francisco to end 2011 and ring in 2012. I found myself taking a lot in, doing little thinking about acting (which felt so nice) and a lot of thinking about other things that are growing in importance for me. It’s important to recognize that I have chosen this career path and everything in between. (I chose to get headshots from a specific photographer, I chose to join a certain theater company, I chose to accept certain projects, etc.) For the past two years, I have been going along like this, going through the motions in my pursuit of this career. And I realized, recently, that not all of it necessarily makes me happy. I do it because I’ve been doing it, letting it take control over me instead of the other way around. I made those decisions and I can just as easily make new ones. It’s kind of like when I was at NYU and miserable, fearing I was going to be stuck there for four years in my misery when I had an “aha” moment, that looking back seems so simple and obvious but wasn’t at all when I was in the thick of my unhappiness. I realized, hey, I can leave! It didn’t mean I was quitting acting, it didn’t mean I was a failure. Afterall, NYU was my dream, I strived for and achieved. But just because I decided to go there didn’t mean I had to stay there. There was nothing wrong with rejecting the traditional four-year college experience if it wasn’t working for me. It’s my life, I can do it however I want.

So I’m kind of realizing that with my life right now. They aren’t fully formed decisions yet, because I’m still processing it all. But this recent break did give me the ability to see a lot of things about my life that I don’t get to see on a day-to-day basis in the throws of acting career stuff. It’s funny, because I always say there is no “right” way to do this. No instruction guide, no ladder to climb. And yet, there are lots of things I’ve been doing because I feel I should, I have to. I need to take my own advice! I can go about this any way I want. Besides, acting is not my one and only passion, though it is the most prominent now. Over the break those other passions and desires started to speak up. It’s what made me realize that I need to change this up this year. Nor sure how or when or where, but I’m sure I’ll figure it out.