Thursday, December 30, 2010

"I don't believe in God, I believe in Al Pacino"


That's what Spanish actor Javier Bardem said.  Provocative, yes, and he made a brilliant point.  He also talked about committing to roles 100% and putting yourself aside to ensure the character you're portraying is completely expressed.  Check out the interview.  The man is a true artist.

Monday, December 27, 2010

Keep Your Eyes Open


It's important to have representation.   This article on Tamara Tunie's allegedly being ripped off (to the tune of over a million dollars!) is a reminder that no matter who you hire, you have to keep your eyes open.  This actress has been working steadily for decades (As The World Turns, Law & Order SVU), she's made the career we'd all kill for and stayed in NYC (the best city on the planet!) doing it, winning praise all along the way.  She did everything right....  And still she's been victimized.  We, artists, love to get lost in the world of creativity and ignore boring/labyrinthian finance matters, so long as the bills are getting paid and we've got fun money.  That doesn't work.  Like Snoop, you've got to keep your mind on money and your money on your mind...

Thursday, December 16, 2010

What was I saying about mentors....? Exhibit A:

Anthony Mackie photographed for Interview Magazine
I love Anthony Mackie's success story: the power of good mentorship, trusting your talent in the face of challengers, and picking smart projects. Read or listen here for free. It's great to see him rising and it's awesome to see a different kind of Black story told on film. Go see "Night Catches Us"!

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Stage Managing in Between Gigs


A few weeks ago, I wasn't able to make it to an audition, but something told me that I should offer my services behind the scenes, just to stay involved and keep busy.  Sure enough, the Director was happy for the extra help and I am now working as Stage Manager on Harlem on My Mind produced by Xoregos Performing Company.  This could be a great strategic move for actors between jobs.  I'm staying connected, working on an interesting project, networking, and learning new skills (graphic design for a postcards, for example)...  This was definitely a good gamble, whether I get cast in their future productions or not!

Monday, December 13, 2010

How to ruin a good thing

I freaked out.  I like the guy, he likes me, but it's new so we're not exclusive.  And that started to get to me.  I should have let that go, but I couldn't.  I began to imagine him going out with other women and it made me so angry/hurt that I stood him up for our last date.  Which, of course, is self-sabotage.  Now, I've jeopardized the whole thing.  Great.  And for nothing!  He's a sweet man and nothing else mattered this early in the game.
I need a smack.

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Mentors - Get One!

Mentor c/o Rediff

Whew.  Been a minute since I've posted.  All I can say is that I've fallen in love with an incredible man* and the giddiness has distracted me!  

Now, I'm back and I want to talk about what it means to have a mentor.  As actors, we live and practice our profession in little bubbles of self-centeredness interrupted by the odd class and/or gig.  That internal focus is important to our development and understanding of others, it also serves the inner shyness many of us have.  I recently learned the power of reaching out to another actor for career guidance.  I needed new monologues and rather than doing my usual internet troll, I decided to ask an actor friend who I greatly admire to give me a couple of recommendations.  And, boy, did he come through!  Yeah, that seems like a simple thing, but we actors actually don't reach out to each other enough.  Too often we toil alone and only come out to compete.  This was my lesson.  Having a trusted guide in the trenches with you is a great confidence booster.  Now, it's my turn to pay it forward.  Community spirit!

*Guess what?  It's the guy who I thought had rejected me back in October!  ...life always surprises...
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