Nanos, Auditions and Combat

I have completed another Camp Nanowrimo, although my word counts keep being less than what I need to actually finish the stories. This means I will have to up my target word count and write more come November 😉 I also ended up writing a completely different story than the one I had originally intended to. I might need to work on writing what I need to rather than what I am inspired to. Or perhaps just find a way to reconcile the two.
In addition to a lot of time spent writing, I worked on my demo reel, caught up on shows, got inspired by a multitude of acting videos, podcasts and Comic Con panels, then did a couple of self-tapes for good measure 😉 Hanging out with Carolyne is always an amazing time, especially when it includes acting, Menchies and books!
There were also a few notable or unusual events on my calendar:
Last Monday, I met up with a girl I had done a short film with years ago, for coffee and some actor talk. I have been meaning to invite fellow actors for coffee to pick their brains for probably over a year now, but I keep finding excuses to wait. I not only admire her for following through with the intention, I had a really nice time talking to her 🙂
On Friday, I finished Marci Liroff’s Audition bootcamp, which I have been meaning to take for ages. Marci was actually one of the casting directors who’s panel I went to when I attended Actorfest in LA a few years ago, as well as someone I follow on social media, so I had already heard a lot of her advice. Still, she went into more detail with the videos and the articles. Plus, a lot of the information is stuff that it is good to be reminded of every once in a while. It is also divided up into really short videos, so it would be easy to watch a couple every day if you don’t have a few hours to take the course in one sitting. Definitely something to check out if you are new to auditioning, or if you are in L.A. and might find yourself in front of her 😉
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Friday night, we went out to celebrate my cousin Chelsea’s PhD. It isn’t quite related to the blog through acting or writing, but it is a tremendous and awesome achievement that I believe is worth mentioning. Chelsea has always been my incredibly smart and perfect older cousin (I might be biased, but I don’t think so), the one I looked up to and wanted to be like (and still do). These days, I am no longer trying to match her grades, because she is way beyond me, but watching her celebrate this incredible milestone definitely motivates me to push harder to achieve my own dreams. Congratulations to my smartest and absolutely amazing cousin <3
On Saturday, I had an audition for a feature, with no knowledge of the part or story or…nothing really. When I asked for details, they told me they didn’t want to give an unfair advantage to those who were auditioning later and would thus have more time to prepare. With my new resolve to not get into things that I don’t believe in, I should have turned it down, but I looked at some of their previous work, and decided it was worth meeting them. When I got there, they asked a lot about me, then gave me a scene to do as a cold read. We did it 3 times, since I was too entitled the first time, too soft the second, and hopefully just right for the third. I still don’t have all of the details, but it seems like an interesting project, and I get to play a successful, powerful woman who has worked to earn everything she has. Which is pretty cool, right?
Once the audition was done, I drove to my first Stage Combat class. I literally joined QDF so I could take this class last summer, but it ended up being cancelled because there weren’t enough people who had signed up. This time, it is directly through Shawn, the teacher, which is nice because everyone knows him in some way or other. Although I definitely know him by his awesome reputation for teaching and doing stage combat, I also get to work with him at McGill sometimes.
Like most stage combat classes, we started out with an introduction about what Stage Combat is, followed by the safety rules and some terminology. Once all of that was out of the way, we learnt foot stomps and wrist grabs. It kind of felt like a combination of stage combat and improv, because he was quick to integrate dialogue or vocalizations to feed the ‘fight’ and make it more organic than learning moves and learning words and trying to put them together. It was an awesome first class with a really nice group of people and I can’t wait for Week 2 🙂

“A dream doesn’t become reality through magic; it takes sweat, determination and hard work.”

-Colin Powell

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