December 26, 2010

My Top Ten of 2010

So it is almost the end of the year.

Not sure how that happened but it seems to have really come out of nowhere. It feels like just yesterday I was chumming it up with our customers at Banana Republic about playing Christmas music before Thanksgiving had even hit and now Christmas is over! With 2010 coming to a close I, like may others, am reflecting on the year. There have been many highs and lows, if I were to sum it into one word I think I would call it bipolar. I think that once 2011 hits I'll have to stop telling people I've just graduated from UCLA when they ask me what I'm up to. Just implies recently, like in the past month or so and truthfully it has been over six months now. Oye, that's mildly frightening. I cannot express how thankful I am to be going into the new year with a job lined up and prospects for more on the horizon. I think it is a good omen of a better year to come. Although I'm not sure if that's a fair statement. I don't think 2010 was by any means a bad year, I think it was more than anything a transitional year, and I don't think I was the only person who felt that way.

Although I am more than ready to waive goodbye to this year and give 2011 a good sturdy handshake, first impressions really matter you know, I've compiled a list of the top 10 moments of the year. These are in no particular order and to be honest I am positive I will leave out many magnificent moments only to be added to some other list perhaps in a different post.

Number 1 (This should be quite obvious) : Graduating from college! I have a Bachelor in Theater Arts, Check me out, cause I'm super fancy.

Number 2 : Sweet Charity. Dream role, amazing show with amazing people. I couldn't have asked for a better way to close out my time at UCLA.

Number 3 : Discovering I actually like, who'd-a-thunk, yoga! And I use the term "like" very loosely because I think the more appropriate description may be that I'm completelyandutterlyobsessed.

Number 4 : Landing an agent, and my first job post college assisting at the Goodspeed Opera House in the same week, before even graduating. And attached to that my entire Goodspeed experience. Period.

Number 5 : Having the opportunity to assist a Tony nominated director on How to Succeed and a Tony nominated Broadway Diva on Cabaret simultaneously.

Number 6 : Sloppy Senior Day, my birthday, and cast party debauchery.

Number 7 : Getting the best graduation gift a foodie like myself could ask for...My bright orange kitchen aid mixer. I named him Nemo. He is currently the love of my life. If he had a facebook we'd be in a relationship.

Number 8 : Although it stressed us all out to no end, Senior Project and the fact that we actually pulled it off! That's right we rock.

Number 9 : Gaff-taping my La Duca's to avoid standing out while swinging in Cabaret. The rush of performing in front of a live audience after rehearsing each number only twice on my feet the day of the show was in a word exhilarating.

Number 10 : Sharing another amazing year with so many new and old friends. Couldn't ask to be surrounded by more amazing people.

*Number 11 (for good luck) : Here's to many more good memories for 2011

Cheers and Happy Holidays

December 1, 2010

Autumn Foodie Creations

As promised I am double posting today, only because I have so many amazing recipes to share. Many of these recipes come from Cooking Light Magazine and when possible I have attached the links.

My autumn food adventures began with a small feast a friend and I made in early November. The feast consisted of Rosemary Sweet Mashed Potatoes that were supposed to be topped with caramelized shallots but I ended up mixing them into the sweet potatoes so that every bite had that bit of sweetness to it. I also altered the recipe slightly by adding a few tablespoons of brown sugar to the potatoes and I believe a dash of cinnamon. Truly scrumptous. Also I would suggest caramelizing the shallots last, after boiling the potatoes instead of first as it suggests in the recipe. We did it first and the shallots hardened before the potatoes were ready.

Also on the menu that night was Brussel Sprouts Gratin. The name of the dish is a little deceiving. When I think of a 'gratin' dish I immediately think of thinly sliced potatoes baked with lots of cheesy creamy goodness, but there is no cheese to be found in this dish. The recipe is pretty simple, and I've already made it again since. I used turkey bacon which doesn't give off the same amount of fat or flavor, so if you can spare the calories I suggest using full-fat, pig bacon. Also be sure to really toast your bread crumbs. I got lazy and didn't the second time around and it made what should have been a crispy crust quite soggy. 

As Thanksgiving approached it was time for me to tackle what has become one of my favorite days of the year. A Thanksgiving feast for my closest girlfriends which allows me to make and experiment with a giant turkey for the past 3 years straight. This year my project was brining the turkey. I was inspired by the Food Network's Sunny Anderson and used her Daddy's Game Changing Turkey recipe as a guideline for my brine and gravy. The brine, or as my roommate and I joked, my turkey's over night spa consisted of water, a whole lotta salt, thyme, sage, rosemary, lemon and some peppercorns. After letting it soak in a styrofoam cooler in my kitchen overnight I let it come to room temperature and got to work on the rub. I used lots of thyme, rosemary, parsley, salt and pepper of course, olive oil, and my secret ingredient, honey! Inside the bird I followed Sunny's lead and put some sage, thyme, lemon, onion and garlic, along with onion garlic and broth in the pan to get those gravy drippings going. Here's what it looked like precooking:

And here is what it looked like after a mere 4 hours in the oven. I credit the gorgeous golden brown color to the honey in the rub, the dark pieces are the fresh herbs that couldn't quite take the heat. I think next year I'll use dried herbs in the rub. 

The gravy, although not pictured was Sunny's recipe from the link above and it came out DELICIOUS. It was the first year I made a successful gravy and I think it was because I finally curbed my anti-recipe, I can figure it out on my own, voice and followed tried and true directions. Like i said, I was very proud. 

The stuffing was sort of a no brainer, I cheated a bit here merely because i was too lazy to either buy bread ahead of time and let it get hard or roast a bunch of cut up bread the day of. I use Trader Joe's Cornbread Stuffing as the base but add a few things of my own. I saute LOTS or aromatics, aka about 2 onions and a whole bunch of chopped celery. Add a hefty amount of parsley and let that cook down for about 20 minutes. Just before it's all softened I add salt, pepper and thyme. I toss this mixture with the bread pieces and then proceed to make the seasoning package that comes with the stuffing. I never use all of the seasoning liquid because it makes for mushy stuffing and although mine came out a little drier than I'd like this year, I'd much rather is dry that mushy. Here's the stuffing pre-baking.

Although I could not go home for an actual Thanksgiving holiday I was able to spend it with a dear friend and her family. But since I was barging in last minute to her family's meal I couldn't show up empty handed, also it felt wrong not to be doing something in the kitchen on this festive Thursday in November. So...I made a double batch of Pumpkin Mini Muffins whose recipe also came from Cooking Light to take to Thanksgiving dinner and work the next day. This recipe was insanely easy. I read a few of the comments and altered the recipe just slightly. I substituted 1.5 cups of the all purpose flour for whole wheat flour which added a little more nutrition, I also doubled the amount of cinnamon and added about a teaspoon of pumpkin pie spice to the dry ingredients. Like I said these were super yummy, and if I were looking to make them more decadent I think they would taste heavenly with a dollop of cream cheese frosting. 

AND to round out this very long, food filled entry --I imagine you are becoming quite hungry by now, I made a huge pot of chicken soup day before last because I am flirting with a cold that I really wish would go away. The recipe is really simple, and essentially reminds me of my mom like no other. After the soup had been simmering on my stove for about an hour I stuck my nose into the pot, took a big whiff and was immediately transported to my house in El Cerrito eating soup with what we called 'dot noodles' on a rainy day with my mom and dad. But isn't that what food and cooking is all about? Bringing us together, making fond memories, and full tummies?

Nothing like a bowl of mom's chicken soup. Ask me nicely and maybe I'll give you the recipe. Unlike all the above foods this one has no link except that it comes from my home with love. 

Stay tuned to the next foodie entry, for tomorrow, in the spirit of Chanukah I will attempt to make potato latkes from scratch with my good friend Steve! 

Frida Libre!

Okay once again I've waited entirely too long to update my blog. I have many recipes to share and even more exciting news about my big girl life. Try not to judge me as I am sure to write far too much in this entry, if not add a second entry just for all the food I've been making over the past month.

I'm still working at Banana Republic which has managed to fill up my daily schedule quite a bit. I've been yoga-ing less, unfortunately, and feeling a need for the yogi strength and wisdom. But standing for essentially 4-6 hours straight can wear a girl down!  I finally got myself to a late night yoga class day before last and it was quite possibly the best thing I could have done for myself. I have been over eating a tinge since Thanksgiving (but then again who hasn't) and feeling the need to mentally and physically detox. During the class I found myself in a twisting reverse warrior pose, and while exhaling through it I literally felt like I was wringing the gunk out of my internal organs. This may sound strange, but I felt like all the sugar and junk I had been eating was finally being processed out of my system. Dear yoga, I never thought I'd say this; but you are my soulmate. Love Cami

In other news, I landed my very first professional theater job!! The show is called Frida Libre. It is a new children's musical being produced in conjunction with the La Jolla Playhouse in San Diego that will tour San Diego county schools. I start rehearsals in San Diego January 11th 2011 (can you believe 2010 is almost over?!) and will be performing from February through early April! I got the news while I was driving up Hwy 5 to visit my fam in Northern California. My caller ID was blinking my agent's number and I just was praying they were going to tell me I had gotten the job, and I did! As soon as I hung up the phone, still driving, I literally began to weep. I have never been so overcome with emotion so instantly. Since graduation I cannot begin to count how many times I have sat down and thought to myself "what the hell are you doing?! You can't do this, this isn't real." But finally landing a job gave mt the validation I needed to remind myself that I'm actually good at what I do, and I love it enough to keep trying no matter what. Holy crap it was a good feeling.

I cannot begin to explain how proud I am of the successes my peers have been fortunate enough to have in these short six months since graduation. I was talking to the amazing Angelica Richie, whose blog can be accessed here, about this today and it truly is fantastic. To think that so many of my friends are working in New York, Los Angeles and all over the county is ridiculous. (To tune into the UCLA c/o 2010 progress click here.) The life we have all chosen to lead is by no means an easy one. We have given ourselves over to the theater and entertainment gods in hopes of finding just a tiny bit of gold at the end of our long and difficult rainbow. Scary thought right? And yet, as idealistic or perhaps egotistical as it may sound I feel that we all belong here. I feel that through the hard work, blood, sweat and many, many tears that we all put in everything will work out in the just the way it is meant to. There were many jobs I was not have been cast in that caused me a lot of heartbreak, but all of those previous jobs would have made me ineligible for Frida. And from what I understand, this is going to be an opportunity to create a title character role in a new musical that will be performed for kids, which we all know are my favorite people! I hate to say that everyone was right when they said the right projects will come along, but in this case I think they were.

I've got lots of recipes to share since it is officially that gluttonous time of year and I've already started cooking and baking up a storm, but I am choosing to put them in a separate post merely for the sake of brevity (and my tummy is rumbling for dinner so I need to take a quick typing break to feed my appetite.)

More fun to come!

October 28, 2010

Mommy Wow! I'm a Big Girl Now

Hello Friends!

Although it has been quite a while since I've posted I thought it was about time to catch up on some of the grown-up things I've been up to lately.

I have finally managed to wrangle a big girl, day job. Starting Saturday I will be working as a cashier at Banana Republic! Try not to get too jealous, I know it's a deeply coveted and highly prestigious position that only us chosen few can have, but apparently I had what they were looking for. It shouldn't be too hard to figure out, I've worked for the company twice before and when looking for extra holiday employees experience reigns supreme. And I like to think I gave a stunning interview in my chic, well thought out, Banana Republic outfit. As part of my holiday employment I have been told I will essentially get very few days off in the months of November and December. I won't be going home for Thanksgiving for the first time EVER. If that's not a sign of growing up then I don't know what is. The company apparently has "blackout dates" where any request for time off will not be taken, these dates are essentially from November 26th through New Years. I'm really hoping I can manage to get home for more than a few days during Christmas time, but I'll have to get a feel for the managers and all that before I know for sure.

Another fun milestone in my road to adulthood was filling out my absentee ballot for the election next week. I was assuming I wouldn't be voting since I am still registered in Richmond, but apparently I thought ahead and registered for an absentee ballot which my mom brought to me during her visit this past weekend. For the first time I sat down and researched all the propositions on the ballot, the main races, and the measures on the ballot specific to Richmond. It took a solid 2 hours, but I did it and was so happy I did. I dropped my ballot in the mail this afternoon and have officially submitted my vote for this election. 'Mommy wow! I'm a big girl now!'

In other news I've OF COURSE been cooking a lot. I just got the November issue of Cooking Light Magazine and I must say I have dog-eared WAY too many recipes for my tummy to hold. I'm currently taking applications to be my human vacuum cleaner and taste tester so that I will not turn into an obese cat lady making epic meals for 7 and eating them by myself.

Here's a lil dish I created on my own that I've literally made 10 times in the past 2 weeks. It's easy and super delicious. The base of the bowl is just brown rice with boiled broccoli and asparagus. The kicker though, is the tomatoes on top. I saute red onions in olive oil, throw in sesame oil and halved baby tomatoes (mine are from the farmers market. Literally as sweet as candy). Let those get warm and puffy, then just add some 'soyaki' sauce from Trader Joes, a ton of fresh garlic and basil and viola! I pour the whole mixture on top of the rice, broccoli, and asparagus and it's AMAZING!

These bad boys were something I whipped up while I was bored last week. I hadn't used my kitchen aid mixer for a while and he was feeling lonely. They are sugar cookie sandwiches that I thankfully was able to pawn off on some friends because eating more than one of these would produce insane sugar highs and perhaps give someone diabetes. Seriously, they're all sugar. I used a basic sugar cookie recipe, rolled each cookie ball in sugar sprinkles, and once cooled I added the filling which is a butter frosting made of confectioner's sugar, butter, milk, and vanilla extract. If that's not enough to make you drool and want to hop on a treadmill simultaneously, then I don't know what will. How many times can I say 'sugar' while describing one dessert? Here it's six. Holy sugar rush!

I've made some other fun dishes but failed to take pictures so I'll have to divulge those recipes at a later date.

More soon!

October 10, 2010

Kashi Adventures

"Kashi cereal has as much protein as an egg!"

This was the phrase of the day as I broke the seal of my LA, post school, acting career and shot my very first commercial! The initial audition was last week, one of the five I went on during my week of insanity, and the call back was this last Tuesday. I got the final word that I had been cast on Wednesday, and now here I am on Sunday night with a sunburned face and my first commercial under my belt. The whole experience was very different than I had imagined but still tons of fun. And I'm not gunna lie, getting paid to stand outside in beautiful weather by the water, cheer on marathon runners and talk about Kashi cereal...not too bad. Sure I had to pee for about 3 hours before we got a break, I was in a long sleeve shirt in 75 or 80 degree weather and I walked away with a tomato red face but I'm gunna venture to say there are way worse ways I could have spent my Sunday.

We made the trip up to San Luis Obispo where we would be shooting Saturday afternoon, checked into our hotel and had then entire evening to roam the town. I instantly clicked with a few people and we found ourselves at the Central Coast Brewery sampling their 5 beers for 5 dollars. A perfectly wonderful way to spend a Saturday evening with some new people in a new place. After the brewery we made our way farther into town for dinner. I've never been to San Luis Obispo, but it reminded me a lot of Berkeley or Westwood only cleaner and with a little more of a small town feel. Westwood is always bustling but SLO had an easier, calmer feel to it. After being sufficiently stuffed by 1000 pounds of sushi we headed back to our rooms to hang for a while and eventually tried to crash early because our call time was 5:30 AM this morning!

When I woke up not only did it feel like I hadn't really gone to sleep, the TV still on and playing infomercials for things like the shake weight, total home gym, and any other awkward product endorsed by Chuck Norris. I dragged myself into the shower and met the rest of my dazed and sleepy Kashi friends for our craft services breakfast which was being served essentially in total darkness because it was 5:30 in the morning and apparently no one thought to bring some lights to help us out.

This upcoming week promises to be one with a little more free time, although whenever I say that I end up eating my words. Tomorrow I'll be hitting up the Laugh Factory to see my friend's Comedy/Improv/Music group perform as part of an MTV event. I wish I knew more about it but I helped choreograph a small segment in one of the videos they will be playing and felt it appropriate I go out and support. The group is called The Waitist and their videos are pretty funny so if you haven't seen them I'd suggest giving them a gander, I choreographed their Slumdog Millionaire spoof and was so pumped they asked me to come back and choreograph another.

Essentially it has been a crazy couple of weeks. I will write more soon, but for now I am off to dreamland because I am absolutely POOPED!

September 30, 2010

More Rain Dancing

In recent years I have become very well acclimated with this phrase:

"When it rains it pours."

Literally that should be my mantra, or at least the working title of the made for TV movie about my life. It seems that I am so rarely in any kind of in-between place. I go back and forth from feeling complacent, and tired, and useless to over worked, over booked and frantic in a matter of seconds. When I am feeling overwhelmed it is never a slight itch of a feeling. It is one of those moods when you think the world is going to end, the tears will not stop flowing, and nothing you do is right. When I am feeling great I want to shout it from the rooftops, start a dance party and have everyone join in. Maybe I'm bipolar, or maybe this is a part of getting older? Maybe having so much alone time suddenly forces you to discover the multidimensional, and slightly psychotic person you've always been? Who knows. Two weeks ago I was averaging one or two auditions per week. I was spending a lot of time reading and watching netflix, going to yoga, of course searching for a day job and cooking with all my fresh farmer's market finds. At that point it was pouring normalcy all over my big girl life. I had time to kill during the day which until recently was a complete rarity in my life.
This week however I have been on 5 auditions spanning from mainstream commercials to reality shows, to theater and student films. Suddenly it's raining cats and dogs all over my potentially professional performer life. I have another audition tomorrow, my dad's coming into town AND I have a concert to perform in on Saturday night. Oye! Did I mention there's a female chorus piece from Verdi's Macbeth in the concert sung entirely in ITALIAN? Yah, that's real and not easy. Also I am singing the soprano part which unfortunately for my neighbors sounds like a strangled cat when I am trying to learn it off of my old school tape recorder in the middle of the day. For my wonderfully grumpy neighbor who yelled at me to shut up; I'll stop singing at 2 in the afternoon when you stop yelling and laughing with your roommate as loud as possible at 2am. Thanks.
In other news, UCLA started school last week. I was surprised when I made the personal realization that I am so beyond happy NOT to be in school. I thought that come September I would be sad and nostalgic about everyone else starting their classes, and my friends and the comfort of knowing what I would be doing just about every hour of every day. But, I've realized quite the opposite is true. Sure, not knowing what I'll be doing day to day can be terrifying. Not having a day job stresses me out, and of course as a 20-something, single female, I'm looking for a boy. But when it comes down to it I know I am so lucky to be where I am. So this week was crazy, next week may be the opposite, but at least I can find solace in things like yoga and cooking to pass the time between these days of panic and madness. I really can't even believe this is the life I live.
I am beyond excited for my dad to come down this weekend. Although I feel bad for dragging him to all my obligations this weekend it will be nice to have a driving buddy, not to mention some one to make me mickey mouse pancakes in the morning. I thought I had more to write but I guess this is it for now.

As always there will be more soon and hopefully fun stories to follow.

September 17, 2010

Panic Be Gone!

Okay been a while since I've written on this piece. Fail.

The last week has been quite a whirlwind. I can't believe it's already Friday again. Living life on a day to day schedule that never looks the same makes the days flow remarkably fast. Since last writing I've gone from feeling incredibly high, to insanely low and back up to my happy balanced self.

I've pulled myself out of the production of Pippin. (Cue gasps of shock here). In school we're constantly taught that we should take every opportunity to perform no matter what it is. Experience is experience...right? After spending a lot of hours stressing over the decision I woke up yesterday with some sort of clarity, thank you to whoever sent that my way, and realized I could not commit the time and money to the project that it warranted. Although I didn't get the dance teaching job (sad face) I feel that there are more things in store for me, not to mention even without that job I'm still working in Malibu once and week, Playa Del Rey 1-2 days a week, and auditioning all over town. It adds up to A LOT of gas, time, and money therefore I decided I couldn't afford to be driving an hour EVERY NIGHT to rehearsals out in the Valley. It's just too much.

I couldn't help but feel an insane amount of relief after officially sending the email about having to depart from the production. By nature I worry a lot about every one else and how my actions will make them feel and often forget to take my own well being, sanity, or feelings. For the first time I made a decision based on what I felt I really needed, without being selfish, and it felt damn good. Not to mention this weekend without being tied to those rehearsals still brings me a full load of commitments.

I think I've said this before but I think I am the busiest unemployed person ever. I guess technically I'm teaching my dance classes and working at Pepperdine, but still, those don't quite add up to a full day job. Tomorrow I will be driving down to Vista (near San Diego) to audition to assist in choreography for the Miss California USA pageant. I'm actually super stoked. I already made up my minute of super girlie, 'stancer' choreography to Katy Perry's California Girls (their song choice not mine, but quite fitting for the project). Then on Sunday I'll be heading back to UCLA to help put some numbers from Cabaret back together with whoever is in town to be presented at Orientation on Monday morning. Talk about insta-choreo. Hopefully I still have everyone's spacing written down in my original binder from the show, we shall see. After that rehearsal I head all the way down to Fullerton for a vocal rehearsal for a concert I've been cast in. I'm excited for the rehearsal but I just downloaded all the group songs they wanted us to learn and it's A LOT. Gotta find time to learn those before Sunday afternoon.

Phew, I'm tired just thinking about the next few days. But I'm approaching it with an open mind and with a smile. I've learned from yoga that no matter how difficult things get physically, if you keep your mind light and a slight smile on your face, everything just gets easier. Something my yoga teacher often says at the end of class is "no matter how difficult warrior 3, or the crow pose can be, it's a thousand times easier that what you'll encounter in your day to day life." But if we keep breathing and releasing eventually things will get easier. I had my share of panic moments this week, but I've learned from the practice that these moments never last long. It's your life, and it's too short to remain in a state of fear, stress, anger, and tension. I guess it's easy for my to say this now that my panic has passed. But I know it will be back sometime trying to pull me into the darkness of self doubt. Force me to ask the questions like "what the hell am I doing with my life?!...who are you kidding, you'll never make call yourself an artist?!" Thankfully I can lay in savasana and push all of those thoughts away from my mind and make room for the universe to fill me with wisdom and guidance.

Good things are coming my way, even if I have to wait for a little while. I'll be here, trying to make the most of this life. Cooking good food, enjoying the company of friends and trying to make sense of this real life I've only begun to enter.

September 6, 2010

Dancing Off Beat and In The Rain

Happy Labor Day Weekend Friends!

I must say mine has been relaxing and fun for the most part. I spent today at my roommates house with her family soaking up some rays and eating delicious bbq. I spent yesterday walking to the farmers market, impulsively buying canvas and paints to play with outdoors in the sunshine, and sharing a delicious meal of eggplant/tomato stir fry over rice (made from scratch by yours truly) with a dear friend. You should be jealous of the scrumptiousness that has entered my tummy over the last 48 hours. Oh yah, and my roommate made homemade banana bread with her mom Saturday which I've been eating for breakfast all weekend. Like I said, be jealous.

Things in general have begun to pick up. Although I am still lacking the official day job I'm hoping to get a hook up at a dance studio from a new friend, I've been cast in some random one day singing concert, I've been cast in what seems to be a low-budget potentially okay production of Pippin (details to follow), I've got a reading at the end of the month and may be choreographing a theatrical dance piece at Pepperdine for a former teacher of mine. Oh yah, plus random auditions, yoga with my favorite teacher whenever possible, and teaching ballet at a high school once or twice a week starting relatively soon. Now this is the schedule I'm used to juggling!

Speaking of auditions though I have some truly wonderful stories to share from my auditions over the last week or so. The best story comes from my Pippin dance call, so once I become friends with people in the cast (or the creative team) I may have to delete this portion of my post but here it goes for now:
Anyone who knows ANYTHING about Pippin will have to agree with me that it has little to nothing in common with Andrew Lippa's Wild Party, specifically the song "Raise The Roof," which is what our dance call was choreographed to. But "why?" you may ask...the answer? I have no idea. Although I'm sure Bob Fosse loved himself some samba steps I can state with confidence that he did not include it in his original Pippin choreography, just a hunch. SO I'm at the dance call which is not being taught by the choreographer (she was not present) but instead by the associate producer who not only couldn't count the music, but managed to demonstrate a chasse frankenstein-style using the same arm as leg. Oh yes, at this very official (sarcasm) dance call he gave us two chasse's on no particular count using the same arm as leg. It was fantastic. What really put the cherry on the sundae that was this dance combo was that he also decided to belt out Queenie's lyrics while we danced over the track, it helped us dance and hear the non-existent counts better, duh!
There ended up being another dance call back with the actual choreographer who was a girl no older than me which was also not to a song from the show and also started with a Samba step. Again, not sure where the logic was on that one. BUT I apparently had what they were looking for and got cast! Rehearsals start tomorrow. I'm mildly terrified but also just excited to be working on a show again, regardless of the production value.
Another fun story comes from an audition out in Hollywood for a tiny theater I had never really known existed. The play had to do with the major sins and would feature vignettes about each one. By the time the owner and director of the theater had finished describing the theater and the show I knew it wasn't something I had any desire to do, but the guy had my headshot already and I felt it bad juju to just bail. SO the audition went as such. Lots of awkward people in a holding room waiting to go in 3 at a time. When it's our turn to audition here are our instructions: You will come through the door and see a box, the lights will be blue and you will be drawn to the box. You're not sure what it is but you're intrigued by it. You can do this however you want, as yourself, as Indiana Jones, doesn't matter. Then when the lights turn red (here's the best part) you have suddenly become possessed by whatever evil you have chosen is in the box. Now GO!
Dear director man, I am not going to go crazy and turn into the chick from the exorcism for you. And what's best? The whole thing lasted less than 20 seconds. Oye it was awful. Note to self, be more wary of what you submit yourself for, specifically small scale theater in Hollywood, it's scary.
All this aside though I have been having a lot of fun over the past week. I made a new friend at the Pippin dance call who is fantastic, and like I said have felt things picking up speed. It's exciting. I had mentioned to my mom that August might have been the calm before the storm, and if things keep progressing as they have been the past few days I may have been right. We shall see. I'm excited to get my creative juices flowing. I was literally thinking on my drive home today that I really wanted an outlet for my choreography and only a few hours later I got a offer to come choreograph at Pepperdine. Ask and you shall receieve? I think so. Thank you for that universe.

Since this post has become much longer than intended I will leave you with another nugget that stuck with me from my yoga teacher last week. He said "wouldn't it be great if instead of learning to just weather the storm we learned to dance in the rain?" I'm dancin all right and I hope to keep dancing straight through the storm and to the rainbow on the other side.

More soon.

September 2, 2010


I read an article recently about the current twenty-something age group. This collection of young people that I am a part of that are in the limbo phase between adulthood and adolescence; or perhaps the phase of diving head first into the real world while still longing for our parents to make us Mickey Mouse pancakes on Saturday mornings. It's a strange place to live in. This particular article argued that my generation is putting off growing up, so to speak, or rather just taking their sweet time in doing so. People are moving back in with their parents, getting married later in life, living in multiple apartments with multiple roommates before ever thinking about buying a house.

In our teen years we are aching to be free of our parents control. But now, post college, having my mom visit brightens up my week and brings some much needed order to my chaotic and unscheduled new life. It is officially September and for the first time since I was 5 I am not going out to buy the newest and coolest back pack, pencil box, or school gadget. WEIRD. This can' be real. Going through what needs to get accomplished in the next few days I have no homework, no summer reading to catch up on, in reality very few things with any kind of due date other than a short bio for a concert I will be singing in next month. I have traded in papers and textbooks to write emails to various people regarding job opportunities, rehearsal conflicts, auditions and headshots. I have to schedule in my yoga and dance classes, run basic errands such as grocery shopping and CVS trips because I am out of shampoo and running low on my favorite cereal. And while all this sounds easy and mundane I am somehow busy and mildly overwhelmed by the newness of it all.

In school the priorities are clear, black and white. 'I cannot go to that audition because I have class and if I miss class I get in trouble'. Simple, annoying at times, but nonetheless easy to understand and abide by. Now it is not so easy. I must make up the rules on my own. It's all of a sudden not so clear as to what projects, jobs, etc are the wisest choices. Priorities and scheduling changes at the drop of a hat and I have to be ready to do anything at anytime. Talk about living in the present and taking it one day and one breath at a time!

My yoga teacher at the beginning of this week said something which has stuck with me. He was talking about the practice of yoga and how, although it is a physical workout, it is also a spiritual and mental process. Learning to calm the mind, focus on breathing and leave everything that may be causing stress or worry outside while committing to the practice for however long it is. He said that finding a calmness in your daily life is essential; citing that in a natural disaster it is often those who are able to stay calm that survive. And this particular phrase has survived with me all week: "Sometimes life can feel like a natural disaster, but if we can stay calm and breathe through it, we will be okay."

Pretty groovy if you ask me. I'm becoming a more of a yogi everyday. :-)

August 30, 2010

Small World

Okay so it's been a while. I would like to say I've been busy but I think the better word is overwhelmed. Still getting used to this lack of schedule life. Weird!

I've spent the past few weeks auditioning, baking, getting totally hooked on yoga, and realizing more and more how small the world really is. I cannot count how many times I've been meeting someone new and found out that we have at least a handful of friends in common. I think the most outrageous though was finding out that the guy interviewing me last week grew up performing in the same theater company as I did. In fact, his dad was one of our main producers of the company! I couldn't even believe it. We're talking kids theater in Walnut
Creek, he is the chair of performing arts at a prep school, and I found the job opening on Backstage Online. Seriously, what are the odds?

On top of that I've been spending a lot of time with my good friend Steve, a graduate of USC (sorry bruin friends) and I'm constantly in awe of how many people we both know or the connections made while I've been introduced to friends of his.
Whether it be people I grew up with or UCLA people or something else, I'm realizing that we are all totally connected without even realizing it. Isn't it bizarre to think that the random people we see in the grocery stores, or the gas station are probably only separated from us by 2 or 3 degrees? Trips me out. hah

I've put Nemo, my kitchen aid, to good use in recent days as well. Last week I made sinful Buttermilk Cupcakes with buttermilk frosting which I dyed red and green to go with a mexican theme dinner party. It's sort of hard to tell, but I cut out some of the center of the cupcake and filled it with red while and green to replicate the flag of my mexi people. I also made carrot cake cupcakes for a birthday party, but I didn't take a picture. They were actually a lot more work than I anticipated, but very worth it. The cream cheese frosting was truly to die for.

Here's a picture of the amazing salad Bill made for our entirely vegan (save for my cupcakes) fiesta. He gave me his left over cilantro dressing and I made my own version of the salad later in the week. It was DELICIOUS and managed to feed me for about 3 days straight!

I think that's about all for now. My mom's coming to town tomorrow and hopefully I'll finally get my room finished. I think I've even talked her into coming to yoga with m and Melissa while she's here. Should be fun.

More soon!

August 15, 2010

Lazy Sunday

Hellloooo lazy Sunday!

At the moment it is 12:35pm. I am still in bed, still in my pajamas, drinking my coffee and enjoying 'dolce far niente'. The sweetness of doing nothing. My week has finally started to slow down a bit and now I am allowing it to come to a screeching but peaceful halt. This weekend has been pretty jam packed with exciting events. I broke in my new kitchen aid mixer AND antique oven (pictures to follow) by baking a huge Almond Strawberry coffee cake and chocolate chip cookies. I saw Eat Pray Love which was amazing and inspiring. I forgot how much the book had touched me and the movie had the same, if not more, of an emotional affect. My day of lovely art was continued when I went to see the dance theater piece NeverWonderland produced and created by friends of mine and included performances by my amazingly talented Cabaret diva Rachel Hirshee. The show was soooo fantastic. It was inventive, and detailed and danced so beautifully by the whole cast. I could not believe how much choreography there was! And how intricate most of it was, the movement was so married to the perfectly chosen music, truly a stunning performance.

In other news, the job hunt is not quite going as well as hoped. I think I just need to start another wave of applying. I interviewed and taught a sample class at a studio in Manhattan Beach, so perhaps that will work out. Just sending good vibes into the universe and hoping I get some back in return. Seeing all this great theater, and movies and such has made me ache to be working on a project again. It's weird not being involved in anything. I'm taking lots of dance classes which is great and I plan to get my ass back to my usual Edge classes starting this week, but I miss the daily grind of rehearsals and creating something. Working together to mold a piece of text or music to what we believe to be its best form. Although I am enjoying my days of relaxing, there are only so many I can enjoy before I start acting like my cat when he's not allowed to go outside. Jumping on all the furniture he knows he's supposed to avoid, scratching at the windows and doors, clawing the carpets, and whining insufferably to be let out.

Okay so maybe that's a bit of a dramatic way to say I just get stir crazy when I wake up and realize I don't have a thousand things to do. But it's true. I don't believe I am meant to be a static or still person. I just gotta get out and MOVE!

Here's the pictures of my orange mixer dutifully named Nemo....

My delicious coffee cake. Topped with a layer of whipped strawberry jam, and a thick layer of almond crumble. Your mouth should be watering.
And lastly, my signature chocolate chippers which I gave to the cast of NeverWonderland and other friends.

August 10, 2010

Jobs and Goodies

I've been putting off this day for quite a I officially gave into the inevitability that I will need to get a real person job. So job hunting I went! Part of the problem is I don't really know what I would like to do. I have a romanticized idea about working in some hip, organic, or perhaps trendy cafe at night while dancing my ass off at auditions all day. I applied to a cupcake place which may make me nice and plump, but also would feed my food nerd inside me. I'm applying to lululemon and a handful of other places too. Basically whatever looks decent in my cute, new neighborhood.
I have this crazy notion that I am going to love whatever job I find, and I think if I believe it hard enough, the universe might just make my wish come true. Who says your survival job has to be painful or awful? I say down to that and up with working as a real adult doing something I at least like! I've also looked into bartending school which would be a great way to supplement my income while not cutting into audition availability at all. But who know. I'm on this ride and I'm holdin on tight. Just waiting to see where the next few weeks take me.
I've got another audition Thursday which is nice. It's crazy how without school and work-work I'm managing to keep myself busy almost all day long. I think setting up the new apartment really helps that though. Today I was able to finally sleep in a bit, my body is killing me after a Disney, hip-hop, dance call with Tessandra Chavez. I spent the rest of the morning and early afternoon finally unpacking all my kitchen stuff, putting contact paper into our cabinets. A truly domestic morning. It felt good though, getting everything finally organized. I put our table together so we now officially have furniture in our living room. Still working on the TV and couch, but hey, progress is progress! I've even gotten a few things up on my walls; I'm telling you, watch out, I am makin moves over here.
The only downside to this place is we haven't gotten our gas turned on yet. By the time they come Friday I will have been without a stove for 2 WEEKS! I can't believe it. I have managed thanks to my handy dandy George Foreman grill but it's about time to get cooking! Not to mention my brand new Kitchen Aid mixer is sitting in our kitchen just glaring at me, waiting to be used. I have a feeling for the first few weeks with that baby I'm gunna be making all kinds of crazy goodies. I foresee cakes, cookies and maybe even bread!

The possibilities are endless. More Soon

August 8, 2010

Crunching Metal

Since I've been back in LA I've driven past a staggering number of car accidents. Almost daily as I drive the many freeways and busy streets I see people pulled over to the sides with dented fenders exchanging information. I even got love tapped by a car behind me while stopped at a red light. I didn't even realize what had happened until my dad got out of the car to check for damage. There was none and so we went on our merry way. The lil bump caught me so off guard, I couldn't stop laughing! It was the first time I had even been rear-ended!
It makes me wonder though, of all these accidents, how many are caused by distracted drivers? I admit I have texted in my car before, usually while stopped at lights, but dangerous is that?! Especially in a city like LA where people are constantly cutting you off, stopping quickly and driving like maniacs. Taking yours eyes away for a second is just crazy! I mean it's awful enough I have my ipod plugged into my car. I'd venture to say scrolling for music while driving is no less of an offense than texting. Staring at a small screen when we should be staring at the road, no matter what it is, is just a bad idea.

Of all these accidents I've driven past only one happened right in front of me. Yesterday after driving all the way up to Norcal I was stopped at a red light mildly dazing off into space when suddenly two cars collided in the intersection in front of me. For me there are few sounds I hate more than the crunching of car metal in an accident. A woman had decided to go for a left turn at the very end of her yellow light which then turned red, and a man whose light had turned green ran right into her. I could literally feel my heart pounding, my mouth was wide open. I was wondering if I should get out and help. The woman pulled her severely dented car over while the man got out of his car and started cursing and yelling at her. She got out, her airbag had opened and she was bleeding from either her mouth or nose. She seemed completely terrified. The man continued to berate her, yelling things like "Thanks a lot! You've just screwed my whole f***ing family! This is our only transportation!" I'm not sure whose fault the accident was, perhaps a combination of both. Although she maybe shouldn't have gone through the yellow, shouldn't he have seen that she had not yet cleared the intersection? The whole scene really made me realize how lucky I am. Both people involved were probably in for a whole ordeal regarding money, insurance, and maybe having to be without a car for a while. Right now, especially in areas like Richmond where I was, money and work doesn't always come easy. There's a lot of people out there suffering, who can't afford accidents or rising insurance costs.

I wish there was something I could be doing. As I was unpacking my new apartment I realized how much stuff I have. But why?! I mean sure, I need lots of dance shoes and many of my clothes are hand-me-downs from friends. I don't spend insane amounts of money on clothes or anything like that. But what about those people who have nothing? All the homeless people or the people who can't afford food. I mean I'm sitting in my new apartment trying to organize my apparent plethora of stuff and sheet music and again it hit me how fortunate I am to have everything I do. All I can do is thank this universe for blessing me with such gifts.

July 24, 2010

Feeding the soul and the tummy...

So I have a small confession to make. I'm an avid reader of Jason Mraz's blog. A wonderful friend suggested I check it out and I love it. He has such an intelligent and witty way of writing about the world around him. Both the good and the bad. His blog was actually what finally made me start one after debating it for a while.

I've settled back into LA. Well if you can even call it that. I'm in an apartment getting emptier by the day. I constantly have the nagging feeling I should be packing but manage not to get started yet because I still don't know where I'll be moving. The days are ticking down and I'm nervous but also optimistic we will find something we love. The past few days have been spent mostly with myself. The majority of my friends are not in town and up until this morning I had been without internet and am still without a TV. It's interesting how much time those two screens take up in our lives isn't it?

Well to supplement the time I would have spent surfing facebook, checking my email, and potentially writing here I found other, better, ways to entertain myself. And what's better? I ended up creating some amazing meals, reading some great books, and finding the much needed quiet time I had been craving since coming back to LA. For dinner the past two nights I've marinated chicken in balsalmic with onions, salt, parsley, and garlic. Then pan fried the chicken all together with the onions which simultaneously cooked to yummy caramelized perfection. I then cut up my chicken and added it to a giant bed of arugula, tossed in a little fresh basil, squirted half a lemon over the top and viola! The most delicious and easy salad ever. On the side I had boiled broccoli and some mushroom risotto. Talk about delicious. Tonight, in a wonderfully serendipitous search through Netflix I found Julie and Julia and watched the movie while enjoying my quick and healthy home cooked meal.

I'm quite proud of myself to be cooking while my apartment looks the way it does. I know I keep talking about the messy and awful state of this place, but trust me, it's pretty bad. I think most people would have given up and gone to McDonald's by now. But I'm staying strong!

Here's some pictures of my latest creations. Other than the cake they all include arugula. I've just been reintroduced to it and I'm obsessed!

July 19, 2010

Driving Thoughts

So I'm finally back in LA and already it feels like I've never left. My apartment, now in a completely transient state, has almost no furniture in the living room, no dining room chairs, and one less bed than when I was last here. The living room and other common areas have begun to fill up with boxes and bags of stuff to be moved into new places. There's still the same amount of hair-balls, dirt, and overall grime that never seems to leave no matter how much I or anyone else cleans. I think it's the consequence of living in a building where countless other college students have lived, slept, studied, and partied. The walls are not quite white, and the paint job my roommates and I did in my room and the living room is less than perfect.

Although I had dreaded coming back to Cali and to this apartment I will miss this place for all the memories shared here. The people, the parties, movie nights, girl nights. Two full years of my life spent sleeping in my tiny twin bed in the corner perpendicular to Klarissa's. Even now as I lie in here, it's a part of a routine. For two years essentially every night before sleeping I would find myself in this very position checking emails, facebook, or cramming in last minute homework. And now in two short weeks I'll be starting completely over again in a new apartment in a new neighborhood. It's exciting but mind blowing. I think I'm starting to realize my time in this college village and everything that came along with it is rapidly coming to a close. I had said goodbye to this world mentally when I hopped on the plane for Connecticut a month ago, but physically it's a lot to take in. Not to mention a whole lotta crap to move out!

Now that I'm out of school my mind keeps getting flooded with all the things I want to accomplish. I want to perform as a dancer, I want to sing, I want to act. I want to choreograph. Learn the guitar, learn languages. I want to write....something. All of a sudden my hunger to do EVERYTHING has come alive. But where to start!? I want to read more, watch TV less. Eat better food. I want to try a million new recipes and share them with friends. I want to find a survival job that I love not one I just deal with. I want to travel. I want to be in love. It's overwhelming. Without the confines of school the possibilities seem endless, and yet oddly out of reach. I guess this is my entry of word vomit, but it's true. Driving down from Northern California to LA my mind was constantly moving from one thing to the next. I had to keep telling myself not to forget things because when left alone with your music and your thoughts for six hours things come and go like water. One minute the ideas are there and the next they're out in the middle of the sea smiling back at you. Taunting you cause you can't catch them and remember why they were important. As much as that drive can be dreadful, I always manage to find a good deal of clarity in the process. With no means of distractions other than the occasional phone call and music you are forced to ponder and think all on your own. No facebook to keep you hypnotized, no mindless clicking through people's pictures and pages to stalk insignificant details they choose to share or overshare about their lives. In the car, alone on the road, it's pretty wonderful actually. Maybe that's where this spurt of dialogue came from.

More soon.

July 17, 2010

Going Going, Back Back to Cali Cali

So I'm back in California. The past 2 weeks have been a whirl-wind. I went from opening a show in CT, to hanging in NYC with new friends, to the overcast Richmond weather. I'm in my mom's house reflecting on the adventure I've just had. A bunch of family is coming over tonight for a bbq, sort of a belated Graduation party mixed with 'I'm never home so lets get together' party. I found some recipes in Cooking Light magazine that I am trying out for the shindig so I am spending some time prepping for that. There's something so methodical about pulling the little thyme leaves off of their stem. I found myself meticulously removing the leaves and day dreaming about everything that's just occurred and what's to come when I finally return to LA in two short days.

I couldn't really sleep the other night because all of a sudden the tasks I had managed to forget about for the last month came creeping back into my brain. I have to get new headshots, I need to get my resume on various casting sites, I need a job, I have to MOVE! And all before August even starts. I guess the time for rest is...never? Not that this is uncommon for me, just daunting. Peggy was right when she told me that returning home from our baby town kind of feels like 'What just happened?'...'Was that real?' All of a sudden it feels like it was a dream or a blur, something far away when really it was only a week ago.

While in NYC I got to see 2 shows. I wanted to see Fela but both times I tried to get tickets the people at the TKTS windows told me the seats sucked. So instead I saw La Cage Au Folles and American Idiot. La Cage was fantastic. It took me a while to warm up to it, but by the end I was totally enthralled, laughing hysterically and in awe of the male chorus who did a thousand jump splits in their Can-Can number. Holy cooter slams! It was insane, I just found myself laughing at the total abandon with which they hurled themselves into the air and then thumped flat onto the ground. American Idiot was...interesting. Overall it felt more like a rock concert than a musical. Everyone in the show was wildly talented, I loved the vocals and the movement quality. I wouldn't call it dance, but the choreography was really inventive and created really awesome pictures onstage. I also liked the music, I bought the cd and have enjoyed listening to it, but I probably wouldn't see it again. What I did find interesting was how much it just reminded me of Berkeley. Green Day is from our area and the show tried out at Berkeley Rep, so it makes sense. One girl was even wearing an "I hella heart Oakland" shirt which made me laugh.

I also managed to take a few dance classes while I was in the city which was a total BLAST. It has been a while since I took an entirely new class, by myself, with a teacher I've never met. My neck is very sore but I loved every second of it. At this point I'm looking for any reason to get back out to the east coast. Over this past month I've realized more and more that it is where I want to be. The community of performers, although huge, is so much tighter- more supportive. And the people I know in the city has now tripled! I love LA but leaving Goodspeed and NY was really tough. I was dreading it. Being home is nice, more relaxing than I had anticipated, but I'm just itching to get back to the East Coast.

If nothing else, I'm hoping to get back to see my show on their closing weekend in September. It truly is a special show and experience. Everyone is the top of the top in their field. One of our leading guys just put in his notice because he got cast in a new Broadway show and starts rehearsing in August. We've got amazing aerialists and dancers and singers, the show is truly spectacular. I am so proud to have been a part of it. The Sunday night show right before I left was tough. At the end of the show the cast sings an a cappella reprise of the song "Love Makes The World Go Round" and one of the guys in our cast sang the whole thing right to me in the mezzanine. I lost it. I had become so close with the cast, I have very rarely felt so compassionate about a cast, but I truly love everyone in that cast. I hope I can work with all of them again if not multiple times.

Anyways I've got to take my cake out of the oven and get started on my pasta salad. More soon.

July 4, 2010

Happy 4th!

Okay so it's been a while... rehearsals have picked up and the cast has been hanging out in the evenings almost every night. Happy 4th of July to everyone. I'm going to give a quick recap of some of the highlights from the past two weeks.

First and foremost the show looks amazing. Everything is set and we move into the theater day after tomorrow. I can't believe it! I'm a little worried about tech, because it's literally going to change EVERYTHING. I'm just praying for patience and understanding from all people involved. In reality we need about twice as much time in the space as we are going to have before an audience sees the show. Not only do we have to set all the technical stuff (lights, scene changes, costumes etc.) we have to set all the aerial work, maneuver people on and off ladders, and make sure none of our dancers kill each other on what may be the smallest stage ever. Should be quite the adventure getting everything put together.

I can't believe I'm leaving my baby town in one short week. I've extended my stay on the east coast so I can spend a few days in the city with the one and only Ms Lizzie Boulger which I am soo excited about. But I'm not looking forward to going back to the west. At least not yet. Something about being here, around all these people, I think I've officially caught the NY/East Coast bug. LA's great and I'm sure I'll love it when I get back, but I'm realizing more and more that for what I want to do, I kind of need to be on this side of the country. (Sorry Mom)

Some fun anecdotes from my stay thus far:
Most of the doors I've encountered while being here, save for my front door, don't have mechanical locks but little manual ones like the kind you find in public restroom stalls. It's cute, but also weird. I feel like they leave them that way on purpose to keep the antiquated feeling of these houses alive.

The liquor store in town is the only store open all year round. It's closed on Sundays, but opens at 9am on Saturdays. They must know that everyone from the theater has Monday off, therefore parties on Sunday night, and needs to stock up on booze on Saturday. I mean with a 9am opening I could stop and get my booze before even going in for rehearsal, how convenient!

I have become obsessed with Catchphrase and Taboo. The games were reintroduced by my new fave people from the Annie Get Your Gun cast and now I am a gaming master. I was lucky enough to be a part of the catchphrase dream team and I think I am making a pretty good name for myself among my cast with Taboo. Watch out though, I get really into the games.

Two nights ago the AGYG cast had a going away shindig next door which included everyone making whatever food they had left over so they could get rid of it before moving out, AND a naked jump in the CT river by a handful of the cast. I saw way more of a lot of people than I ever imagined I would haha. The theater here literally looks out over the river so a bunch of the guys jumped off the dock and took a little midnight swim...literally hysterical. It was a super fun night to say the least. The only hard part was being awake for the 9am yoga warm up yesterday. Yikes.

Anyways I'm off to celebrate with our cast. Volleyball at this little lake we found and then a BBQ at our male lead's place.

More soon!

June 20, 2010

Sea sick!....Ottowa!!...CRABS!!!

Okay here is a quick debrief before I race back to the second half of our rehearsal day.

It is UNBELIEVABLY humid today. I had yet to be in such weather and was wondering what all the fuss was about. Then just as I exited the rehearsal hall for lunch I walked out into a sauna. Literally the air is thick and hazy. Oye its gross!!

Rehearsal is going amazing. We've blocked and choreographed the entire first act with the exception of the puppet section which is getting done on tuesday. How's that for speedy? The ensemble is literally ridiculous. As our choreographer puts it "it's like a candy store...I can choose from sooo many things!" I mean these guys are doing lift after lift with their partners, dancing with capes in music that changes time signatures every 2 bars (you think I'm kidding, but it's not an exaggeration). We literally go from counting in tens to eights to fives to sixes in a matter of moments. Sure is testing my music lit skills from sophmore year!

Last night I saw the current show Annie Get Your Gun which all my housemates are in. It was really a fun show. I was sitting on the very far house left side with some cast mates and I couldn't help but imagine what our show will look like. The stage is TINY! I mean having a full out dancing ensemble of 5 guys and 4 women is going to be very tight. "Like surgery" our choreographer keeps repeating to our dancers. I imagined how thrilling it will be when at the end of our opening number half of the cast has climbed our jungle gym of a set and is eye to eye with the people sitting in the balconies. Or when the cast members are twirling in hoops high in the air. It should make for a really brilliant picture.

After the show last night a bunch of the Annie Get Your Gun cast came to our house for a game of Catchphrase. At first I was worried. I don't know any of them very well but as soon as we started playing I was having a total BLAST! I mean just throwing out words and things like it was my job. The title of this entry is some of my favorite answers from the night. :-) Truly ridiculous fun. I hope they come over again soon.

Anyways I'm off to our stumble through of the first act. WHAT!? It's madness. Then a cast fiesta to celebrate being done with our first week and a day off tomorrow to rest and catch up on the sleep I missed staying up and playing Catchphrase until 1:30 am (oops)

More soon...

June 16, 2010

Hanging From Hoops and straps...just another day on the job

Greetings again from my baby Connecticut town.

Rehearsals have officially begun! Yesterday morning was mostly consumed by meeting everyone, talking about the production, and getting acclimated to how everything works around here. The latter half of the day was spent learning magic! Yes, magic. Our show includes a character "Marco the Magnificent" who performs both small and big tricks; one of which is entitled "spikes of death." Oooooh. Aaaaah. Our magic consultant who could only be with us for one day crammed in all the info he could about how everything works. But don't ask me, I'm sworn to secrecy!

Once again last night I was astounded at how quiet the town is once the sun goes down. I'm used to the craziness of drunken college kids, buses, and sirens all passing my window as I am trying to sleep. But here, it's literally crickets! AND the people who I am sharing the house with have been out of town on their days off. So there's literally no noise. I finally met some of them today, they're all in the cast of the other show which is running right now. The older gent living downstairs asked if I played poker. I sense some light gambling in my future.

Today while most of the cast was going over music the choreographer and I popped our heads into the "aerial studio" where our ensemble members are working aerial tricks on hanging hoops, straps, ropes, and silks! In case there's confusion the show is called Carnival and therefore we are creating a circus onstage. There's puppets, magic, juggling. You name it, essentially we've got it. And today I learned how to hoist myself into one of the hoops. Talk about fun! It is much harder than the pros make it look, but what a rush once you're up in the air spinning around. The best part is that our director is not shy at all about climbing on every apparatus. I swear he's like a little monkey, much more coordinated than one might think.

In the last hours of rehearsal we had a read and sing through of the whole show. I am literally blown away by the amount of talent I am surrounded by. The score is simply GORGEOUS. I cannot believe I hadn't heard it until now. I am astounded by the textures in it. The story itself is darker than one might at first assume, but our lead female brings such optimism and not to mention a killer voice. All I can say is going to work every morning will be no problem.

Anyways I'm off to dinner! More tales to come.

June 14, 2010

Day One

Okay so I guess this is the first post. I've been sucked into blog-land by a few friends who have them and after reading Jason Mraz's blog this afternoon I was hooked. I also figured that while I was in this baby Connecticut town it might be a fun way to pass some time and keep friends and family updated.

I guess with a blog you're supposed to have some sort of mission statement? Or a clear cut idea of what you want to say. But mine is quite the opposite. I always wanted to start a cooking for college blog, following my trials at epic meal making on a budget in a less than ideal kitchen which is often overrun with my roommates dishes, red cups, and empty wine bottles. But alas, I have graduated so I must say c'est la vie to that dream.

Then there's the option of starving actor, trying to make it and dishing about all the auditions and crazy people I meet on my journey to the big bad broadway, but that would be too one note for my taste.

SO... what to write about? This will hopefully be a record of my time as a recent graduate (still passionate about cooking, performing, and so many other things) trying to make it in "the biz". As a dancer, singer, actor, choreographer etc. I hope to travel lots and have many exciting, silly stories to share.

As of late I am in a baby town which is probably a tiny spot on any map about to get cracking on the show Carnival. I am assisting the choreographer and getting to work with what seems to be an amazing cast. We had a mini meet and greet tonight which will continue tomorrow when we start rehearsing. The town here is quiet, I'm in my own room in a house of 5 other people all of whom are in the other show running at the moment. I have yet to meet these elusive people but hope to very soon. Some highlights of my time here include the lush green trees that surround everything, my first official trip to Dunkin Doughnuts, and a run in with a GIANT bionic ant that refused to die when I pushed him into the toilet.

Other than that it has been pretty tame, a far cry from the madness the end of the school year brought me. But it is a much needed hiatus from the craziness of LA and I am so excited to get working. My tasks on this show should include dancing, of course, potential aerial work, and magic! Oh boy, oh boy, never a dull moment.

Much more stories to follow!