Dreams. Dreams are the most important thing a person has. Some people dream of owning their own business, raising a family, traveling the world or learning 6 languages! My dream? Well… It’s a pretty big dream; some call it unrealistic. My dream is to have my name known in some way.
Theatre has been the thing in my life that has given me the chance to put myself out there. Someone knows who I am even if it is only for a couple of hours. I’ve never been a lead or supporting lead role, so I was always known as just another face in the ensemble. No one has ever given me the chance to perform as a lead or pushed me outside my comfort zone as an actress. I’ve been working my way up to some semblance of the top of my metaphysical ladder and college has pushed me back to the bottom. Being pushed back to the bottom has made me lose who I am as a performer. I don’t know who I am anymore..
I’ll be honest, I’m at a low, dark place right now trying to figure out who I am as an actress. I’m questioning myself a lot, be it characters I could play, what songs show off my voice the best, what the right repertoire for me is and what my limits are. This plays in with my Type post on this blog; Not knowing what my type is or what goes into finding my type does not help this low. I know theatre is one of the hardest professions to get yourself into- some call it crazy. I’m crazy because I never realized that there is so much more information I need to know about theatre until I came to Fredonia. How was I supposed to know? No one ever told me.
I love being a theatre major more than anything, I wouldn’t change my major for the world. But no one ever told me about all of these doubts and points of realization that come with this major. Or maybe it’s just me… I don’t think other majors feel the same way as theatre majors. A lot of other professions look for a person that’s well-rounded, someone who can get the job done and has the degree to back it up in an interview. Theatre jobs? They don’t care about what degree you have. Your degree doesn’t matter in auditions. If your talent fits the show and/or a certain role, and most importantly your first impression in your audition is good, and you behave professionally throughout the audition process your chances of getting a role are just as good as anyone elses. First impressions are key in this business and if your first impression isn’t the best, that can carry over to another audition/director even if you don’t know it because directors know each other and will/can contact each other about an actor being considered for a show.
Theatre is a cutthroat business and there are 100+ other men/woman fighting for the same role you are auditioning for. It’s important to know who you are in this profession because anything and everything can be thrown back in your face when it comes to things you can’t do. Right now, I’m at the point of trying to find where I belong in this business. When it is time for me to go into an audition for a show/role, I will have gained the confidence to trust myself that what I’m performing is who I am, not random material I think I can sing/act. Am I prepared to be judged the rest of my life? Yes. Am I ready for the rejection to outnumber the success? So far I’ve known nothing else. And am I prepared to go up against some of the best as well as 100 other women just like me for the same role when I go out into the real world? ABSOLUTELY. Bring it on!
Like Mr. Paul always says, “You are a work in progress.”; that’s exactly what I am- I am a work in progress. I like being that way because it shows that I’m not perfect. I have flaws, I’m insecure, I’m vulnerable, I don’t know who I am, and right now, I am okay with that. It might take a semester, a year or the rest of my college experience but I’ll find myself. I will always be a work in progress even after years of experience and growth. We all have our strengths and weaknesses; it’s all about accepting the strengths and improving the weaknesses.
Just because I am at this strange in-between of trying to find the actress I truly am doesn’t mean that this is going to last forever. We all have to hit that low before we can reach our high point. Things always get worse before they get better. I’ve had two of those moments in my personal life and I know there always comes a high after a low. I’ll wait, I’ll search and I might be down, but I will not give up on my dream. I’ve had too many people tell me to give up, choose something else to do with my life, and tell me I will never amount to anything. Well, for those with doubt, I will achieve my dream. I don’t know how and I certainly don’t know when, but I will have my name known in this world known as Theatre.
Everyone has that point of doubt and some people are really good at hiding it. I wrote this post to show that feeling this way doesn’t mean you’re weak. It means you’re strong enough to show that something isn’t right.
“It takes a lot of courage to show your dreams to someone else.” Erma Bombeck