Life is to short to live it without a smile...or a mustache

Monday, November 28, 2011

Busting at the seams with news!

So, this once a week thing of updating my blog gets a little tough when all you want to do is sleep when you have free time.  It has been quite a month since my last post.  As I sat down to write this today I was thinking of all the things I wanted to tell you about. Tech week of my first equity show, Halloween, opening night, job opportunities, Chalk fest and the sand castle competition, my 23 birthday, Cheryl...?, Whitworth opportunities, dancing, Thanksgiving, and so many other fun moments.  Talk about a long blog right?  If you are still with me, I will try and make it as fun as possible.  Here goes...

Tech Week:  Talk about working my butt off.  It was a long two weeks without a day off but I made it.  I was successful in helping as a first hand for the light hang, and focus and I learned a ton from the designer that was brought in.  It was no light hang with Jenn Read and the college crew but I had a great time.  Over 200 light later things were in the sky.  I also found out that I have a not hidden...character inside of me.  Johan is a German ladder climber that just kind of came out of me at 11:45pm one night during light hang.  Let me just say, he can really get a crowd going!  Dressing during tech week was a world-wind.  I was told things would go really slow and there would be plenty of time to choreograph the changes in the moment with the actors.  Being that the director of the show is also the Artistic Director and head of FST I was super scared and nervous to show him my skills.  I needed everything to be 100% perfect the first time because then they would see I was no joke.  Let’s just say that the 10 out of 12 Tech day was not how I was told it would be.  Things went back to back with little time to spare and no time to mess up and try things different ways.  That being said, I feel like I rocked the day as a whole.  Everyone was dressed in time for the most part and only two of the million changes had to be worked over in time for perfection.  For having never done this big of a show I was a chip off the old block!

P.S. I told some I had a clip of Johan in action and I would post it...I do but couldnt get the clip to upload. Will work on it so you all can meet him soon

Halloween:  After a long day of light focus the interns dressed up with simple things out of our closets and the costume storage...its good to know the right person right?...and we made our way down to the Main Street Block Party.  The city blocks off the street and sets up a stage for live music and beer stands so people can get their drink on.  Yes, a couple beers were taken in and we even walked to a church to get some pumpkins and smashed them against an alley wall.  A cougar got all up in my biz while a roomie taped the event and laughs were had by all until her BF also dressed like a Ref just like her and I came back to her and found her with the guy that she was dancing with after me.  Did I dodge that bullet or what?!

Opening Night:  All the hype was up and I was nervous.  Being that we had 4 invited runs the evenings before I knew I was ready but it still seemed so foreign to me.  The show was a breeze and the party to follow was great!  There were rich people all over the place, and pictures being taken at every angle.  The highlight of my night was when the leading lady came to find me before she left to give me hug to thank me for making her night smooth and calm.  She also reinforced that when I was ready she wanted to introduce me to her friends in the wardrobe distinct in NYC.  May I remind you this is the women that is on resting leave from her staring role in Mama Mia on Broadway!  She told me that she knew I wanted to act and dance myself, stressing that it is the hardest biz out there, but that she sees something in me.  She told me that she knew what ever I would do with my life I would be a professional at it.  So, I guess I have some thinking to do.  Maybe I will call on her when I am willing and ready.

Job Opportunities:  All I have been doing is thinking about life.  People here are all looking at jobs in other places to try and get the big hit and try and move on.  Some are unhappy with what they are doing but I find myself learning and grateful for the things I am up to.  Yes, I wonder what will happen after this year but I see I still have so mush to learn and see here.  I guess I see it like this; not every situation will be a good one but you can always learn something from it.  I have really seen in this past month that I am seeing the glass as half full always.  Stacia again has pulled me aside time after time and talked to me about my hopes and dreams and how she wants to help.  I don’t know if I am ready for the City but I am seeing it looking exciting that’s for sure.  Her boy friend was also in town recently...he is currently working on the new coming Broadway show, Porgy and Bess...and he also was telling Stacia that she should put me in contact with this person and that person in the Broadway district.  YIKES!!!  She also asked what I was making dressing the show and I told her I had to fight to get the job and that I was making nothing more than my weekly stipend. Shocked she told me not to worry because all the actors would be tipping well at the end of the run and that she would be having a discussion with the Big Cheese about how that was wrong.  I told her I didn’t want the money that the expericance was enough.  I was told to hush and she would work on changing that with the theatre.  Money is not why I do my job; I do it because I love it and because I understand the actor side of a quick change.  The last thing you want to worry about when you come running off the stage is what you are supposed to be taking off and putting on.  Keeping them calm and giving them a stress free moment to get a drink of water and a breath is what I shoot for in a change.

Chalk Fest and the Sand Castle Competition:  Sarasota is hopping with old people these days!  The city is collecting its yearly snow birds and the events are starting to take form each weekend.  The past weekends included a week long Chalk Festival in
Main Street
with artists from all over the world. The Festival included a beginners section for the kids, regular portraits, and even 3D paintings.  The craftsmanship was unbelievable and my camera couldn’t even start to capture the feeling of the streets when we walked around.

The next weekend was equally exciting with the yearly Siesta Key Sand Sculpting Competition.  Sand was collected form the beach and mixed with water and an Elmer’s glue mix and they carved at giant mounds all weekend.  Kayliane and I went the last day and paid out $5 to get a close up look at the amazing finished products.



My 23 Birthday:  Old as dirt I know!!! Some days I crawl out of bed and feel it though.  The day was simple and fun.  Blake, one of my roomies shares the same birthday so it was fun to celebrate together.  We both found our desks decorated by office staff when we got to work and cupcakes were on the office kitchen counter for everyone to eat.  After 5 hours in the office we took our break before having to be back for a show later that evening and we got some dinner and some gelato ice cream.  When I arrived for the show that evening the cast took time out of their warm ups to light the fake cake that is used in the show and wished me a happy birthday with a family picture.  One of the coolest moments I have had since I have arrived here!  The evening ended with a trip to a bar in town.  It wasn’t wild and crazy that was nice.  It was rough to be away from my friends and family, but over all it was great.  It does make a guy realize though that he has the best friends and roomies back home when they call you and let you know they miss you and wish you the best!  Miss you guys!

Cheryl...?:  Long story short, a woman answered her ringing cell phone the other night during the show.  Not only did she answer it she had a conversation on it.  Let me also add that it was at the most important and most heart wrenching part of the show!  The actresses on stage were so set back that they ended up stopping the show standing there waiting for her to finish while that orchastra vamped the music and then stopped as well.  The room was silent and finally one of the girls looked back to the orchestra giving a head nod and they lead her back into the show.  Days later now, the situation is funny and we even made our own little documentation of the event.  Some people right?

Make sure you check out this clip...I am in it too! On this YouTube page you can also watch the weekly posts by Doc Rock if you want to see the type of people I spend my time with.
"Close to Crazy presents CHERYL...?"

Whitworth opportunities:  You are hearing from the soon to be new highlighted Whitworth Theatre Alum for perspective students!  I was contacted and asked to answer a bunch of questions and send pictures of my current work to be put in a brochure booklet and an online document.  I am truly honored and hope I do the department justice.  I wouldn’t be doing what I am today without their hard work on me and the knowledge that they gave me.

Dancing:  A couple weeks I was feeling a bit down and finally figured out that is was because I wasn’t using my body anymore and that I had not stretched or danced...other than at a club...since I had arrived.  I quickly fixed that and I am now going to a FST studio a couple nights a week to stretch and dance for a couple hours.  I already feel better and less stressed.  Diana would also be glad to know that my shoulders are no longer hanging at the bottom of my ears and that my neck has much more movement and flow in it.  On a side note; the tip of my right big toe has been numb for about three weeks now and I was thinking of going to the doctor for it because it was making dancing on it feel funny.  I am happy to report that the other night when I was dancing in the kitchen while I nooking a midnight snack I realized I could feel it all of a sudden!  The little things that make you happy as a dancer.  I am looking into joining the Dance Trance class at the YMCA and I am looking for an Interplay theatre group to try and work with in my free time.  Teaching time; Even if it is a couple simple movements a day that you do, do them, you will feel so much better!

Thanksgiving:  This is the sappy one of the mix.  Thanksgiving was really tough this year but it was great time as well.  The weather made it seem like it wasn’t really even that time of year.  The warm 82 degree weather and blue skies was a far stretch from the snow, coldness, and outdoor freezer that I am use to.  The normal sounds and routines of the day just weren’t there this year even though I made the same chess ball, spinach dip, and pumpkin pies that my family was eating back home.  I put on my shorts and tee and off we went to one of the intern houses for our intern family meal.  Before dinner I called my family at home and talked with everyone there.  They all sounded just has I remembered them and I wished I was there to be a part of my new nephews First Thanksgiving.  After collecting myself from tears when they all told me how proud of me I they were, I made my way inside and ate far too much food.  This Thanksgiving made me even more thankful for the friends and family that I have at home that are supporting my every move and moment.  Words can’t say how thankful I am for that, truly. 


This Thanksgiving week also made me thankful for the way I was brought up.  I was shopping with another intern the day before at "Publics" when a woman knocked on my passenger side window as we backed out of the parking garage.  She told me she was sorry and embraced to be asking but she had locked her keys in her car and had just spent her last cash on the dessert she had just bought.  She needed $17 to pay the roadside help that was in their way.  She was in pink scrubs and said she worked a the hospital down the street and wanted to exchange numbers so she could get the cash back to me in a couple hours after she finished her shift.  I was taught to trust so I believed and went back into the store and bought a pack of gum and got $20 cash.  She gave her number to the other intern as I was in the store and off she went to meet the roadside help.  The other intern didn’t know how I could do that I and I told her I had to trust that she really needed the help because I would want someone to help and trust me if I was in that situation.  Needless to say, the number she gave was not a working number and she ran with the $20.  Could I have used the extra cash, yes but I hope the lady used it and remembers and sees how good some poor young people are.  I always always remember that maybe the homeless guy that stopped me on the way from work days before, or this lady could be Jesus.  Maybe my helping is helping in the long run and saving humanity.  Sure, some people have since joked that Jesus would have had a working cell number, but I feel like I helped.  I have been blessed with special people in my life since I can remember.  People that helped put food and clothes in and on us, people that gave extra cash to my mom during the holidays so that we could have a normal day, and people that helped pay my way though college just because they wanted to see me succeed.  I hope to be able to someday be comfortable enough to do the same. For now though, theses are the little things I can do on my intern stipend.  Maybe it isn’t even the money that is changing the world, maybe it is seeing the moment for others that is doing it.  I felt like the man and lady needed it this week so I gave what I could.  Even if it bought drugs I am thankful for the morals I was given a child.

I guess over all, I have seen myself grow this past month. In years but also as a man.  I have had to do things on my own, celebrate holidays in new and unusual ways, and think about life and the many things that come with it.  Have I figured it out? No.  But, I do see the garment that is turning out from all these years of sewing. Not only is it my hand that has held the needle and thread, but everyone that is a part of my life, big and small.

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