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Random Things that Happened this Week

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Can’t help it, gotta link the whole screenshot, thanks Mike from Chicago! 🙂 So exciting! I also like the fact that after I posted on The Guild website about the iTunes upload, we got a lot of five dollar donations from people who downloaded for free but wanted to contribute. The Guild fans are fantastic 🙂

It’s been a crazy week for me, I did some ADR for “Prairie Fever” (Where you go to a studio and re-record lines from a movie that aren’t useable from the original production sound. Basically watching your face speaking a word and re-recording the word to fit your lips, weird stuff!) I had a bunch of commercial auditions (Thank goodness for commercials) and I had tons of Guild stuff. After being featured on YouTube, the correspondence flooded in and it falls on me to deal with it. I don’t mind most of it, but it’s the weird racist and offensive comments that I have to remove from the videos that really make me chuckle. I chuckle only because it’s the only thing I can do. I have a laughing reflex that is really inconvenient. It’s like when I hear a horrible story where someone’s falling off a roof or getting hit by a car (not fatally of course), It’s my “go-to” for uncomfortable situations. Awkward.

Back to the YouTube comments though. Some of the things people post…why in the world would this stuff ever occur to someone?! What’s the motivation? And I hate to generalize, but when I click on their profiles…a lot of them are 20-somethings from Norway. SERIOUS! Is flaming people a Norwegian thing or is it some joke that people do when they create a profile to flame videos? Who knows. Suffice it to say, most the day of the feature I was refreshing and removing. We got a lot of hits though! 🙂

I’m kind of sad this week because my improv theatre, The Empty Stage is shutting down due to rent increases. It’s been my “funny” home for 8 years, it was the first place I ever though “gee, I like comedy!” Also the place where Vork and Zaboo (Jeff and Sandeep) and I met. There are so many talented people there, and the atmosphere is so unlike LA; Very supportive and non-competitive. I really found my joy there. Hopefully the theatre will open somewhere else later this year, but for the interum, after the theatre closes at the end of Feb, the improv group I’m in “Being Humans” is going to try to find another place to perform. I’ll let everyone know!

I think everyone should study improv. No matter what your career, what your goals, learning to trust yourself and free your subconscious in a “playground” atmosphere is the greatest gift you can give yourself. A lot of you have expressed interest in hearing from me about acting as a profession, as an art form, as a lifestyle in Hollywood, etc. I can honestly say that I found my love of acting through improv. Before that, I was locked into what I was “supposed to do” with a line, completely in my head about what I was planning. Studying improv gave me the freedom to explore the “WHY” of the lines, and gave my subconscious a say in what I was doing; it lets me become spontaneous and helps me “own” the material.

There is nothing more wonderful than relaxing enough that you surprise yourself in improv. Something comes out of your mouth that takes YOU by surprise, and everyone around you laughs. Like last night, we created a whole scenario around something I said about “mouth-babies.” You had to be there, but it was really funny, and just a total random thing that came out of my mouth. And my fellow improvisers took it and ran with it, made it into something hysterical. It’s an incredible feeling, when you’re working right, focusing off yourself, and onto your partner. Improv teaches you on many levels to trust yourself and others. Tell me a career that wouldn’t come in handy!

And you don’t have to be funny to do it (or think you’re funny). It’s what we did as children, there’s no reason we can’t keep doing it now. 🙂 I urge you, if you ever had the impulse to act, to go check it out one of your local improv theaters. Or check out my favorite group anywhere, Improv Everywhere where they do spontaneous improv “stunts” like freeze in place for 5 minutes in the middle of Grand Central Station. Makes me wish I lived in NYC!

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