Okay. So. I have let this all live in my body for a total of two days and I am more than ready to talk about it. I was ready to talk about it to anyone but my class on Tuesday. I do not think I could have run out of that class faster. Sometimes I just feel that I am still not understood, that the way I feel is not justifiable to other people. Sometimes I feel like people just do not get it. No matter how many times you may say something and try to explain it, it will never get through. “From the outside looking in you can never understand it, from the inside looking out you can never explain it”. I feel like this is the perfect quote to describe just about everything- anyone on the outside just does not understand. I hated every minute of my expose. And fuck that ‘not being brave’ shit.There are some words and phrases that make my skin crawl when they are said lately and that would be one of them. I said everything I had to say. I think about what I did say and I cannot think of anything I wish I had said. Maybe I could have talked about my family more and how we grew up. Sure. But I am not dwelling on the fact that I did not bring it up. Let me just start at the beginning. My family. When I am at school I miss my family so much. I love them to pieces and I will not lie and say it is so hard to live without them. I knew I would start crying when I talked about my brother. Ever since he went to basic I have grown so much closer to him and I having him leave so quickly after he got home for a tour in Afghanistan is heartbreaking. I guess that because it was so recent that I became close to my brother I am more sensitive to him being gone and there being a chance that he may not come home. My grandmother’s death at the end of my first semester hit hard. I know that I have not moved on and I do not think I will anytime soon. I never got the chance to say goodbye to her and I had the chance and did not take it. I regret that which is why I think I hold on to it so much. When you talked about needing to move on because shit will happen I just wanted to scream. Each person is so different in how they handle situations like this. I for one could not pull myself together. I tried. Bu for me things like that just do not go to the back of my mind easily. Tell me to get over the death of the grandmother I was closest with and loved so much again and I will punch someone. You cannot just tell people to get over things like that. Yes, shit happens. I know. I am well aware. Shit like cracking your cell phone screen you can get over in a minute. You can get over spilling your milk on the table. But having to just get over losing someone is a moment, I can’t. I won’t until I am ready and that is that. My block to accepting what has happened is the vast amount of regret I have for not spending as much time with her as I should have when I was younger and throughout high school and not calling just to catch up when I should have. I thought about calling so many times and just didn’t. And now it’s gone. I can’t. I call that number and no one will pick up. Regret is my block. Next major point. My acting teacher Jill. Okay, so let me get this out there. Little high school Gina would never have imagined my favorite teacher who I was so close to, helped me through everything, the person I am so alike acting wise would allegedly cheat on her husband and beautiful kids to put our department ahead. Lord almighty that was the most frustrating information. Of course I am only going on what I have heard but I am pretty sure it is credible but whatever. I don’t want to get into it. My heart goes out to her two beautiful children who have no idea. Regardless, I have resentment towards her for what she did. And maybe I do not know the exact reason why I do but I do. So there. I felt so attacked and that you were judging everything I said when we were discussing this topic because of your own experience. But I am me and you are you and we will have two very different outlooks on this. After you commented on this I wanted nothing to do with my expose. Nothing. I felt like instead of just hearing what I had to say, it was a judgement session instead. Looking back I do not feel like I was trying to put up a block or not listen to what you were saying but in a way I was. It was just a frustrating moment. The one thing I loved talking about was my fraternity. My fraternity just makes me so happy. It is something that I did for myself. It was not an assignment or given to me by someone else. It was an offer I accepted on my own. My Big Brother is one of the best people I know and I could not be more thankful to have him in my life. As I was talking about my fraternity I felt like still, after all this time, I was not able to get through to my class. I wanted them to finally understand and see why I love it so much. But I guess this quote will always apply…”From the outside looking in, you can never understand it. From the inside looking out, you can never explain it”.
Ohhhhhhh actingggg classss. Well, I quite enjoyed the time I spent on my scales yesterday. I am realizing now that taking the time to slow down the monologues I already know is letting me find new moments in the pieces where the text really should be slower and other moments of where the momentum needs to speed up. It is definitely something I should have thought about before. In the back of my head I have always known that I have had a problem with speaking my text too quickly, specifically my monologues, but have never really taken the time to figure it all out before. No time like the present! I liked the Suzuki statues that we did in class. I found that my focus was so spot on interestingly enough. It really showed me how movement does come directly from the core. I think that I need to get out of my head more though because I would not necessarily plan what I was going to do but I would think of multiple options while I was on the floor and then jump up and do one of the ones I had previously thought if, so I guess that is kind of planning but not really, if you get my gist. A lot of times I carry a softer focus which I get in trouble for a lot because people think that I am not looking at them or listening when they are talking but in actuality, I am really listening to whatever they are saying. I would definitely like to explore more Suzuki training. It is a class I always wish was offered in our program. I think it would be a particularly helpful class for me because at most times I feel like I need to ground myself more in more work and I feel like I would be able to get more of a grounded sense from that work. The Laban work I also really liked. I have worked with the Laban movements before when I was a sophomore in high school so I do not think that I grasped the full concept of them and what to actually use them for. More or less when I was younger I would only let them influence my movement instead of also letting it inform my text and vocal work as well. I would love to do more work with them now that I understand them more. (Just have to memorize them!) When I was working with my monologue and using the movements I found it was easier to just jump into something, anything and try something new rather than just jumping in without any type of prompt to make changes to my monologue. I will definitely be exploring them more and implementing them in my monologue work. I have also had an actors block for a very long time with labeling my beats with verbs and I think that this will be a great method to shaking things up with my text work.
I really am looking forward to doing my expose on Tuesday. I am pretty open about with what I tell people so I do not think that anything will come as a surprise to the class regarding the things that have happened in my life but I do think that how I feel about certain things, people, situations and about myself may come as a shock to them. I try my best to project my sunny side all the time. I hate being the one who has a ‘bad day’, the one who is moping around and bringing down the spirit of whatever class I am in. I have realized lately that I have learned to not accept my feelings, that I push them aside and do not take the time to go through them rather I bottle them up inside. Every year I always have one or two major breakdowns per semester. They just happen, sometimes out of the blue. I think that if I started owning how I feel I can alleviate that. And who knows, maybe that will actually help me get through some of my emotional actor blocks sometime. Like when I feel things and need to come up with a verb but cannot find the words to express them. If I start with myself, I can move on to how other people feel in a better fashion. Sometimes, there is just so much going on. This year has felt too easy to me. I am not sure if it is because it just is or that I am doing what I love so it feels easy or that I am completely missing something. Things have been falling into place is most ways and way out of line in others but it has never been things that I cannot manage. I mean, I talk about my problems right when they happen more this year than I did last and I think that may be helping. If only my feelings out-poured like that as well. I feel like there is a lot to find this year, to discover. The worst part is the waiting, the anticipation of the waiting and of what I may find within myself may be the scariest part.
Well hello again journal. I feel like it has been far too long since I have written. I guess I will just dive right in and see what comes up today. Yesterdays class was great. For my scales I decided that since rushing my text work is something that has always been a downfall for me and has come up a lot considering the recent auditions, I sat down with a monologue I knew well and focused on slowing down my words. If at any point I felt myself rushing, I would stop. This was a pretty good method for me because a lot of times I get caught up in the physical and how awkward I am and whether or not I should move my feet or my arms and it is a mess. I want to find something more productive to do for scales or something that makes me feel like I used my time wisely and to its full advantage but I have not been able to find something that I would like to do that is effective for me yet. Until I find that though, I will continue working on the monologues I know and slowing down my speech throughout them so that I can easily apply it to any new monologues that I choose to work on. It has been pointed out to me recently just how much I bring myself down through my journal entries. I guess that until now I had not really noticed it because it was so normal for me to write those things. To me a journal has always been the place to write those things but little did I see just how bad they sound when they are read by someone else. I also see that it is not helping me with the way I think about myself on an overall. If I continue to bring myself down through the things I write in my journal entries, I will never be able to have the confidence that I want to have. I have always thought that I was confident in myself. Everyone always tells me that they see confidence in me in the things I do and in the way I act. When I started competing in pageants last year, (yes, I am a pageant girl) people always said that the reason that I was able to do so well after being thrown into my first pageant the day of was because I was confident. Looking back at it I think that when I do pageants I have a different kind of confidence. It is a little bit harder to describe what the difference is but to me pageants are effortless. I do not have to think about anything I do onstage. Interviews have always been easy for me no matter what they are for. I talk about myself and things that I am passionate about, there is nothing easier than that! Then there is talent which is easy considering I sing an effortless musical theatre song that I know inside and out. Swimsuit is a different story because I am not comfortable with the way that I look but I am slowly but surely working on that. I just fake it till I make it in that portion and I get by just fine. And evening gown is perfect, walk around in a dress and smile. Perfect. So overall, it is thoughtless actions that make me happy and make me smile. I guess that because I do not have to think about anything I am doing on stage and I am not doing it to impress anyone, I do it for myself is why I am able to just go for it and work it. I mean, now after hashing all of that out I clearly see what I need to do. Thank you journal for your insight. I need to not give a fuck and remember that I am doing this for myself. I have been so used to people watching my every move throughout high school and last year with critical eyes always catching the one thing that I never want them to see. I know it has been talked about before that we need to drop the impressing other people fact and I need to. I need to do it. I am hoping that a lot of it comes with doing my expose. At first I thought it was going to be a performance piece which of course I was excited for but this is so much better. It seems like a freeing thing to do and I am ready to take that on. Well, now that we have that figured out… I have to say that I was impressed with the amount of information that John shared with us about his life. I was shocked by his home life. His personality and who he is as a person does not reflect that, in fact, it is almost the complete opposite. Well, I think that is all for now. My ducks are almost all in a row concerning my thinking. Bueno.
I am so afraid. I am afraid of this year. Afraid of myself. Afraid that I will not be able to accomplish all I need to do. I am not talking about succeeding at them, just getting them all done. I feel like I am not ready for this. I feel that the little things in life will take over. The petty things I worry about like how to fulfill my musical organization obligation with my fraternity and if I will have enough money in my account to pay for school or London for that matter. I worry every day if my brother will make it through his tour in Afghanistan and come home safely. I fear that all of the little things I think about during the day will distract me and make me put my focus elsewhere instead of on my acting where it needs to be. And until our first class with you, I was always one to have a backup plan. Always. I do not want to be a failure in my career. I want to succeed, I want to perform, I want to teach, I want to watch other succeed and help them get there. I do not want to grow up to be a nobody. I had planned on double majoring in Theatre Studies with a focus in Theatre Management just to have a backup plan, but you are totally right. If you have a backup plan it will become THE plan. I do not want that. I want my backup to stay a backup and not become the reality. I am just so fucking self conscious I guess. I doubt myself so much, which I know I should not do in the first place, but I constantly compare myself to others and find everything wrong with myself and that I am the lesser of the two. It is either that I am not old enough or not thin or fit enough or something that makes me separate myself from others. No matter what I am talking about or who I am talking to I am always beating myself up for something and it is something that needs to stop and I know it. It is so beyond frustrating. I know that this class is going to change me. I want to change. Not only as a person but also as an actor. I want to believe in myself. Today in class when we were talking about auditions, mine just ran through my head and all of the feelings I had were just boiling in my stomach. I was not prepared at all for my audition. I knew my monologues, but not really. I pretty much took a few hours the day of to prepare them and they were not good and I know it. But I walked into that room with an I DO NOT GIVE A FUCK attitude. For multiple reasons did I do this... I knew I was not ready but I knew in order to do my best I could not care what the outcome would be because I would not be as nervous knowing that. As I explained my complicated marching band story, the selfish part of me did not want to be cast in two shows so that I could march part of the season. Not giving a fuck about my pieces in my mind told me that my chances of being double cast would lessen for some reason. (The whole marching band thing is something I am struggling with right now. It is a long complicated emotional story that I will not dive into now, but please know that I am so dedicated to this major with all my heart and soul). I just went in there to do my best and walked out feeling neutral about my work. I did not fuck the whole thing up and I was pretty sure I did not impress anyone either. When I saw the callbacks like I legitimately thought my name was not there at first. Someone else had to point out that I got called back for Juliet because I had not bothered to check that list because I knew it would not be me. I thought it was a joke. I have no idea when the hell they would call me back for that role besides the fact that I look the youngest in the audition pool and I know it. I have a baby face and have played the young girls all the time. I know that is why I got the callback. I walked out of callbacks feeling awful. I knew I was not confident with the material and I consistently felt throughout the night that the other girls had so much on me. They had training and I could not get that out my head. Like everyone knew I did not have training, why did you call me back? Because I look young? Okay, that is a fanfuckingtastic reason. Awesome. The whole experience left me with a sour taste in my mouth. Something I do not want to experience again. I wish I had gone into those callbacks with a fuck it attitude like I did the first time. Oh well. And the fact that we have to show something to the department at the end of the semester pisses me off. I knew that every class has to but I figured we would get out of it and I was so excited. I want that time to fail and make mistakes and tear myself apart and dig for who I am and what I need as an actor. Some of the faculty here make me feel uncomfortable and rub me the wrong way and I knew that even if I do not think about it all semester when that day comes, I will strive to please them. Because that is who I am, a people pleaser. If I was able to talk to Dale about it I would but I know he will not listen to me and take my opinions to heart about this. I think that is all I have to say for now. Thank you for coming here. I think that this will be a big year for me in so many ways. So, thank you.
Words cannot explain the feelings I walked away with after class yesterday. For once I feel like this year will be my year to grow but most of all, to fail. Never have I been more afraid to fail in life than in acting. Never have I been more excited to fail in acting than I am now. I am so afraid to be wrong and to let things just happen and fall into place. I look forward to being able to break that habit and release those tensions.
I guess that after last year I thought I knew my class pretty well. I had taken time to get to know each person, had one on one conversations, had dinner with them, partied with them, but when I think about it, I know only the surface items and not the real them deep inside. I look forward to learning about them through exposes and through dinner with friends.
I have done two other solo pieces like the exposes where I could pick whatever I wanted to talk about and I am so excited for this project because for once I am not able to run away from the idea of talking about the itty bitty details of my life. In a way, I always wish that people knew more about me and the things that make me tick inside but I am forever afraid to share them. It is things like how I cry almost everyday because I miss my brother who was just deployed to Afghanistan last week. I wish that people knew that because when I have a bad day, it is most likely because I miss him. I wish that they could realize the amount of love I have for my fraternity. Next to acting, my fraternity holds the most passion in me. It is people I cannot live without, the people that have taught me the more in one semester than I have learned in such a long time. They truly gave me space to be me and I cannot thank them enough for that. In the acting program, I constantly feel like I am being judged all the time. I try to be myself around everyone but I know that there are things that I am holding back. I know it. When you said that you were going to try your best to make it so no one would see our work this year I could not have been happier. I think I need a year off from people’s evil eyes looking for the things I am doing wrong and not telling me what I am doing right in this department. How am I to ever learn if you do not tell me the good things I am accomplishing? I look at myself and my work and am never happy with anything. I can never stop judging myself to the point where I am tearing myself apart for the work I had just presented. That is one of the most frustrating things I think that I consistently do. Doubt runs along the same river as this. I doubt myself more than I think I should but I do not know how to stop it. For example, I completely doubted myself after my audition Sunday thinking that I was not good enough and that I had completely ruined my audition. Nothing went wrong but I knew my material was not where it should be. I then got called back for Juliet. What the fuck. I literally could not believe it. I was beyond excited to see my name on that list because it showed that for once I had maybe done something right. But I immediately was questioning it. I was up against some very talented girls for the role. I knew that I was not on their level. All I had over them was a baby face. I cannot even think that there was another reason I got called back besides that I look so young.
I am so looking forward to this year. I want to break out of my little girl shell and gain more experience in other areas. I want my little self to be accessible to me at anytime but I want to be castable because I can play so many different parts and not because I look so many different races or look especially young for once. I want to fail, I want to be brave, be prepared, and be active in achieving my goals. I want to fall on my face and cry. I want things to get so hard that I do not see a way out but somehow I will get out. I want to be better at verbalizing what I feel and what I want as my character.
I do not want to doubt myself, I want to believe in myself. And I guess that is where I will start. I will start to believe in myself.
so, this year i am going to try to make this blog the home to my thoughts about my acting experiences this year. i have to send them to my acting teacher anyway and rewriting all of them in my journal would be a pain. so here they will live. let’s all see how far i come in a year.
In two weeks it will be the one year anniversary of Jordan’s death. Jordan’s passing was the inspiration for the piece that I started this blog for. I did the piece in his memory and I cannot believe it has been a year already.
Although I had only met Jordan once, that meeting made an impact on me. The stories I heard about him from his best friend Megan have created a perfect image of Jordan in my mind. Not a day has gone by where I don’t think about how I wish I had met Jordan and gotten to know the wonderful person I always heard about.
I hope that someone out there reads this and realizes that suicide is preventable. Asking for help is the first step. Reaching out to people may be frightening, but it can be so rewarding in the end. There are always reasons to live, they may not be staring you in the face, but they are there and sometimes we just have to look a little harder to find them.
Jordan, we miss you and we love. You will never be forgotten.
today was an incredible day. i was completely nervous to perform my solo command piece. i thought that it was short and did not transition well from one thing to another. i thought that the text work was not incredible and that i was not going to be connected at all and i would not remember anything. the whole piece went so well. my peers enjoyed it and jill was crying at the end. when david gave me my notes he had tears coming down, red in the face. he said that my piece was beautiful and that was all i could ever ask for. i knew i had achieved what i had set out to do. i did not know what the overall thought of my piece was but there is something there. i feel like i have regained what i had lost; knowing where i was going and my passion for what i was doing. i realize now that i am finally doing something right and this all isn’t a waste of time anymore. it’s meaningful, creative, and just the thing i need.
its all for jordan. i did it all because of you, i did it all for you.
i have sat on my butt for all of april vacation. of course i could have worked on my SCP but i have no idea where it’s going or what i am doing anymore. i am trying to figure out what to do to make the piece work but anything i think of just doesnt work. i feel like i am hitting another wall again. i dont know how to get out of it. once i am stuck in my rut i find it so much harder to find the joy in my work that i normally find. i’m not sure if it is due to the amount of academy work, lack of motivation, lack of inspiration or what but i need help at this point. i’m lost in my own work and i don’t want to be there.