Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Actress FAIL.

Writing things down helps me to process them.  I journal privately and I blog.  When I drove home from class today, I knew I needed to write.  When I got home, I decided to post here because, just as I share my triumphs, I think it's only fair to share my failures as well.  And I am failing right now.

As I've mentioned several times, I am in class right now.  I'm studying with an awesome teacher by the name of Martin Barter at The Meisner Center.  I studied with him for two years in the conservatory  program (2002 - 2004), and then again later in the Masters' program.  So he knows my work, and I know what he requires of me.  I have always been able to meet every challenge head-on, but this time I am crashing and burning miserably.  I was given a 6-page scene a week and a half ago, and had a week to learn my lines.  Today, for the third time, onstage - I could not complete the scene.  I KNOW the lines, but when it's time to work onstage, the words just fly out of my head, and there is no possible way to do this work without knowing the lines first.  Martin told me that he had never seen me work this way and asked me what was wrong.  I know what's wrong:  I'm friggin' tired.  Yes, I know everybody is tired (which he pointed out), and yes, I know everybody needs more hours in the day, and maybe that's okay for everybody, but it's not okay for me.  It's not okay with me.  I have to work an hour a day with a partner from class, and yesterday I fell asleep while talking to him.  I've been falling asleep in class for the past week.  My brain needs a reprieve.  If I could, I would clear my schedule right now, but I can't short-change my partner (even though that's what I'm doing by not being able to complete the scene).  I hate to quit, and I hate to fail.

Yet, here I am.  Failing.  I'm not beating up on myself by saying that, I'm just calling it what it is.  I know I won't stay in this place, but it's where I am right now.  My teacher believes that, in the two days we have left, this problem will resolve itself.  I'm not so sure because I really don't know how to fix this one.  What can I do other than study the lines and work with my partner even more?  He also believes that there is a deeper issue with my not being able to get the scene done.  Having taught for 25 years, he sees a lot of things that we (students) don't catch right away, but honestly, it's as simple as "I'm just tired."  I have about five auditions a week, have to work on the scripts for those as well, go to class for 3 hours a day, meet with a partner at leas an hour everyday, make sure I am clothed properly and have all of my supplies for everything.  I'm also still in the "creative accounting" mode of bill-paying right now, finding time to get into the gym and eat properly, sleep, and speak to my friends and loved-ones periodically.  Ugh.  The "balance" theme rears its head again.  Just when I think I've found it...

So that's where I am right now.  I'm okay and I'm not beating myself up or saying I'm a horrible person or I'm destined to be an abject failure for the rest of my life, or anything that dramatic.  I'm just unhappy with my current predicament and need a reset.  This work takes so much energy.  In order serve the material properly and honestly, actors have to have the energy to go as deep (emotionally) as is required.  We have to go there willingly over and over again.  I just ain't got enough to go around right now.

 I did have a good commercial audition (for Walgreens) today.  Usually I don't do too well at the interview-type auditions.  Some people are very quick on their feet and able to think of the perfect witticism at the perfect time.  Not me, lol.  I'm the one who takes (what one of my friends calls) "the pause" to touch base with myself and gather my thoughts lest some offhand, inappropriate comment betray me at an inopportune time.  I've been asked "What are you doing this weekend?" and "What do you love most about your hometown." Not rocket-science, but if I answered them honestly, both questions could be answered in under 3 words.  I know that's not what they want - they want to see my personality, AND sometimes they ask follow-up questions.  Today, however, they asked me my favorite designer.  HA!  I'm having a love affair with Michael Kors right now (he has no idea), so I was able to talk about it with real excitement.

I also had a wardrobe fitting for my upcoming "Sons of Tucson" shoot.  I'm playing an animal shelter employee, and will be wearing a uniform, so the fitting was pretty short.

Alright, gonna give my brain a rest, and watch ANTM, eat something, then get to bed early.  Tomorrow's a new day.

XXOO.

--Nicole

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