dreams · fear · fun · growth · humility · power · smallness

TURN IT UP!

Normal
0
0
1
505
2880
24
5
3536
11.1287

0

0
0

In my race toward the middle, I have forgotten something: To Have Fun.
I was at my first vocal rehearsal on Sunday, and I did what
I had done at my audition: When I got scared of a note (even one I can sing), I pulled back.
I’m reminded of Brene Brown saying that, If we base our
performance, our work, our art, our selves, on the reception of others, we will
invariably slice off and withhold the most potent layer of our performance, work,
art, self. We cannot give our full selves, our full gift, if we are concerned with how we look about it.
To quote another source: You can’t save your face and your
ass at the same time.
Did you run out of breath, the music director asked me? No,
I just got embarrassed and dropped the note. 
My new voice teacher has told me that she thinks Morticia is
from the Bronx – not for the accent, mind you, but for the attitude. Imagine a
large Bronxian woman yelling down the street at some paisan – Morticia is like that.
The vocal coach told me to speak like I think everyone else is deaf.
Despite dropping out of the “Queen of the Amazons” play,
where I was being called to “Be a Royal,” to act how a queen might act, and I
was curious and a little scared to see what that would be like, I am again being
asked to do the same.
To own my voice.
Be loud. Be big. Be powerful.
The music director said, There is nothing sweet about
Morticia.
This isn’t about sounding sweet or beautiful; it’s about
sounding powerful.
Honestly, two plays in a row where I’m cast as a powerful
woman? I think the Universe is giving me a huge opportunity and challenge here.
And as I said to a friend yesterday, I’m going to have to rise to it.
In the middle of all this, however, in the middle of trying to
stay on note and memorize the phrasing and the breathing and the rests – I can
begin to forget why I came here in the first place.
This is not about perfection; it’s about fun. This is
supposed to be FUN! Come on, man? “Addams Family The Musical”? If that’s not
supposed to be fun, I don’t know what is.
Now, I get that I have a responsibility to myself, to the
cast, to the audience to rehearse, to get as proficient as I can. But I also
have a responsibility to be light and fun about it – it will come through if
I’m terrified, or scared to belt a note, or worried what you’re thinking of me. Worried that I’m being too much, too big, too loud.
Fears I have shackled around myself for a lifetime, I’m being
specifically ordered to discard. Now.
Be more, Molly. Be bigger, be louder.
And, too, within that challenge and order, I am being called
to remember to hold this lightly. That this is meant to be so the most fun that
I’ve ever had.
The bigger I get, the more fun I should remember to have.
It’s the antidote to self-sabotage. And a supporter of humility.
This isn’t really
about me. Sure, it’s about me and my challenge to grow and let go, but it’s
also about what can come through me. And when I close my voice, drop the note,
don’t support myself by not breathing, there is no chance for me to be a
channel of joy and fun.
I said it only two days ago: I need to root my safety within
myself, and stop worrying about what others might think – especially that
they’ll tell me to turn it down. They are literally, actually, verbally telling
me to turn it up!
Rise, Miss Molly, to the challenge. This is one of those moments when you have a choice, when you can see the options clearly marked and have the chance to change: Small or Big, Mol? –
You wouldn’t be here if we didn’t think you could do it. 

Advertisements
acting · community · confidence · fear · learning · smallness · theater · trying

Be a Royal

Normal
0
0
1
460
2625
21
5
3223
11.1287

0

0
0

Yesterday, I auditioned with the weird, avant garde theater
company I saw perform briefly on Saturday. Last week, after telling me I didn’t in fact get a ‘Pride and Prejudice’ role as I’d thought, the producer of the company I’ve
been auditioning with these past few weeks continued, “You must know your
height gets in your way.….
“But, we’re doing this ‘Queen of the Amazons’ play, and I’d
like to introduce you to the director.”
So, I met the director last Saturday. At the weird hippie
commune cult Renaissance patchwork crystal-wearing children-of-the-corn-toting ensemble performance.
I’m hippie, people, but I’m not that hippie. Really.
Nonetheless, I spoke with the director for a little while,
he invited me to stay for the performance, which I could only for a few
minutes, and then the producer called on Wednesday to say the director would like
to audition me. And yesterday he did.
He asked at our initial meeting if I really played bass, as is
listed on my resume, and I said yes. So he asked me to bring it. And I did,
along with my guitar, since I really am only a novice at bass, and can’t really
improvise how some might.
We met. He showed me binders and binders of photos from his
previous performances. Despite being achingly weird, some of them, they were
interesting. Achingly weird. He said American theater bores him – he’s Italian.
And then I played two songs I’d written on the guitar, and
sang. And it was strange, just us two, but so nice to be back behind an
instrument again. My throat is sore from it, from being out of practice – just
another muscle, you can’t just decide to
run a marathon without training.
And then he had me read some of the scene. The main role,
the Queen of the Amazons.
It was challenging. I’m not that experienced, you know, and
it was great to have his feedback on what I was doing, like a private acting
lesson. “Be more open, more proud, you’re a queen.” Smile, melt us with your smile, make us love you even when you’re
angry. Speak from down here, not up here. Crouch, get physical, you’re an
AMAZON.
Ha.
It was weird, and fun, and hard, and intimate, and
vulnerable. And it’s still unclear to me if I’m “in,” and because of my “too-soon” (my brain can’t find the word I mean – need more coffee) — PREMATURE!! — that’s it — premature declaration the other week about landing a role, I’m
cautious to do that here. But. It seems very positive. And even if not, I got
some great notes.
It’s clear to me that I have some education to continue
around acting. That it would be worth it for me to look up classes or lessons
again. If I do get this role, it’s
intense, starring, physical, musical, and (word for pushing & challenging I
can’t think of). It may be more than I can chew, but I’ll face that if I get
the role.
The piece that stands out to me about the audition yesterday
was the director inviting me to be more queenly, assertive, confident. To allow what he saw as I played my instruments and sang. To let that person out. To not
be a queen through me and my mishegas (not his word!), but to be a queen as she would be.
I drove from the audition to a very long, but good meeting
at work, and on the ride asked myself aloud, “What does it feel like to be a queen?”
Role or no role, it’s my job to find out.