I’ve decided to go “back to school” in a sense… even though I *am* in school (working on my PhD dissertation for EGS)…. I am also going to take some classes at the ‘ol Pasadena City College. It seems I’m on a journey right now, getting back in touch with my love of being an actor/performer. It started with the classed at the iO WEST that I took in preparation for the Road to Oprah tour, where I was going to be filmed a lot and wanted to get as comfortable with myself as possible as soon as possible, and I totally fell in love with improv, the training, the theater, and all these old ideas and dreams about being an actor came back.
When I was in high school, I was OBSESSED with acting. My big dream, since my first play in Kindergarten where I played the Queen of Hearts and got to sit on a throne and wear a cool dress, was to move to New York City and be a STAGE ACTRESS. I got into NYU (Tisch School/Playwrights Horizons Studio), moved to New York, and started directing. I did a couple student films (directed by my then-boyfriend) and cameo roles in plays for friends, and eventually abandoned being the performer completely.
This wasn’t a bad thing. I got really into directing and became really good at it…. good enough to get an MFA at CalArts in directing, do some pieces at the REDCAT & 24th Street Theater and gain the respect and admiration of some awesome collaborators. Pretty good! Directing totally changed my view of the theater. I got real experimental and enjoyed coaxing amazing performances out of other people. It seems I was going through a phase where I simply couldn’t handle the attention/disappointments/pressure/etc of being an actor. It terrified me. Directing was akin to being the great OZ… I could hide behind the curtains, pull levers, flash lights, and blow people’s minds. I love it.
The performance desire was still there, though – suppressed, repressed – and eventually it started kicking its feet and demanding expression. I think that’s where the boxing thing came from, and why I was able to so passionately throw myself into it. And the band… the band was a huge step toward my getting back in front of an audience, facing them, performing *to* them… not just beating the tar out of someone in front of them. Improv was another step. Now PCC is one more step. Step by step… someday… I’m going to be on BROADWAY, dammit! Or something like that…. we’ll see where the passions lead me next.