In The Pursuit of Happiness…

Memorial-Day-Flag-Website-Banner_edited-1Hello Dear Reader,

Every year at this time, I think of a fellow I did a show with many years ago. I think I may have mentioned Cesar Flores before. His Vietnam stories always made me so sad because I could see the hurt in his face and hear it in his voice. He spoke with such passion about everything. Β I really loved that about him. I know he is somewhere in California, but I don’t know where anymore.

I thank him and all the soldiers this Memorial Day for all the sacrifice that they have made so that America can have the freedoms that have become a way of life. Freedoms that seem to be used to protest for justice and tear us apart for elitism and racism. Just because I don’t agree with some of the propaganda that is going around doesn’t mean it is isn’t an expression, as much as I am loathe to point out.

According to our Declaration of Independence, we all have the right to pursue happiness. Β What happens when that happiness is in jeopardy? I have been paying much more attention to the empty seats, content, quality and types of advertising in the theaters I have been attending as of late. The worry of being a company owner is making sure that you can sustain great shows that bring in a full audience to keep on putting up more great shows and round and round the circle goes.

Can I just say, I don’t understand that when money gets tight the first thing that seems to be cut is live theater. I mean, I sort of get it. Β Tickets are expensive and if you know a lot of people in different shows it can get REALLY pricey. Yet, there is so much intrinsic value in it for a well rounded life. These creative expressions offer us a chance as a society to step back and look at ourselves. Sometimes theatre points the finger and sometimes it doesn’t. Since I want to open my own company in the future, this has really made me shift my thoughts on what the state of theatre in this area will be like in a few months.

My Gentle Reader, I don’t have any worries of the the talent on either side of the table. And when I say “either side of the table,” for those that don’t know, I am referring to the cast/talent and staff/production. We have some great people that are on both sides. Β I worry about the people that we do this for. While it may be fun and a necessity (sometimes) for us, theatre is a mirror of sorts to life. Even if the attendees aren’t going through the particular situation that is on stage, we can still relate to it on an emotional level. You may not agree with some of the things that the play is about, but the hope is that it makes you willing to think about the subject and maybe it will change your heart or strengthen your resolve but hopefully it will make you feel and/or think.

I’ve looked into strategies (and that ain’t even my strong suit! Ask anyone who has played board games with me) in marketing and awareness and community involvement. I see opportunities there, but getting those seats sold is where I feel a bit lost. What if those strategies are great but the seats don’t sell?

Do any of you amazing friends have any thoughts on the state of theatre in the future? What have you seen in regards to attendance? Do you see any way to shrink the number of empty seats?

Dear Reader, I hope you had a wonderful holiday weekend and that you took a moment to reflect on the things that allow us to try to attain the American Dream that our grandparents had before things got so crazy expensive.

And Cesar, where ever you are and whatever show you are working on now, my friend, I salute you and say “Welcome Home!”

Until next time, Gentle Reader…

 

 

Even If A Door Closes And Another Isn’t Around…

Windows-open

Always check the windows!!πŸ˜ƒπŸ˜ƒ

Dearest Reader,

Today, I got that dreaded email that no actor likes to get: the good old “Thanks, but no thanks.” 😟

I promised myself the year off. So really, for me nothing has changed. However, as I have been really unmotivated to work on learning new monologues or audition songs, I have spent most of my time doing research, hanging out with friends and seeing shows. On top of that, I have become a professional napper. 😴 Yes, yes. A NAPPER! Me, the guy who can’t sleep at night because of fears and wants and a whole lot of whatnot.Β  This has put me in a mindset of “I’ll get to it later.” I am beginning to wonder if this time off thing was a bad idea.

So while I may have been given a “T/NT” letter, I still get my year off AND I soon get to announce what my kick off project for 2019 is going to be. πŸ‘πŸ‘πŸ‘(That reminds me, I gotta look into some swing dance classes…)

I also think I lost a bit of my magic at the end of March that involved a high stress situation that we came across. Don’t worry, Good Reader, everything is ok now, but for a hot minute we were a little panicked.

Now, I get to be panicked about other things! Yay and Boo all at the same time. πŸ˜‚πŸ€―πŸ€ͺ Just like getting that letter, but not really having it make a difference. There needs to be a hashtag for that… So while I am disappointed, I need to keep my mind focused on what I set out to do at the very start of all this and get back to it.

I now need to find a way to draw out what I had in me before March happened so I can finish that script! Maybe I need to go back to the source material and play with it. Like make it a game for now. I can record the different characters and listen to it for inspiration? That actually may be what I might do.

Thank you, Dear Reader! I knew you could help!

Until our paths cross again…

Every Moment is A Moment…

Just be glad for the moments that we had…

Dear Gentle Reader,

My weekend high came to a crashing low Monday morning when I heard that a friend had died in a car accident.

Keith had an easy going way about him that made him approachable. He played so many instruments that I was never certain of what he was playing in the orchestra pit whenever our paths crossed. I joked with him during our run of “Boy From Oz” that I was going to start calling him the artist formerly known as Keith. The guy was a crazy talented musician and smart to boot.

When I first heard this news,Β  I was stunned. Then I tried to find pictures from the 6 or 7 shows we did and I could only find one.Β  One lone picture, Dear Reader, of a kind soul whose path I was lucky enough to cross several times.

As I looked through my past, I can see the documentation of my journey, but not enough moments with the people that have created such joy in my life, like Keith.

This knowledge itself brings a sadness because I know I will forget people and experiences. Gentle Reader, as you know I have mentioned a few times that I don’t have the best of memories. I am not really a photogenic person despite my love for being on the stage. I can’t even act like I like being in pictures. That’s how much I don’t care for them.

However, I have to say Thank You to my BFF, Sarah, as well as friends like Tawni, Nique, and Monica for gently pushing me to be in pics just as Keith had. For this lone shot.

Me & Keith

Dear Reader, thank you for taking a moment to read these ramblings of a random fella that has only now realized that stopping to smell the flowers is nice and all, but if you dont recall doing it, have you actually stopped to smell them? Being on the go and working hard is not any fun if you can’t remember it all.

Remember to stop and collect those moments, Gentle Reader. Try to never forget them and have the best time you can during them. And to Keith, my friend, I will see you after the final curtain call… Rest peacefully.