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.

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