After the recent move to the wilds of Brooklyn, I thought I was done with moving for a while. But, no. On Monday, I made the move back to 151 Bank Street.
New York City: Year 2, Day 14
Did you catch that? That’s me trying to make light of the fact that I’ll be living at The New School for Drama from now until May. I say trying because, after one week, it’s already not terribly funny. 32 credit hours (that’s 10 classes) on top of rehearsals for Scene Study, rehearsals for Directing projects, rehearsals for Co-Lab, rehearsals for the main stage shows, and (oh, yeah) homework means that I’ll be wandering back to Greenpoint near the wee hours of the morning to sneak in a few hours of sleep before making the trek back to the West Village the next morning.
These days will be long, but I am prepared. My locker is now home to two boxes of oatmeal, two boxes of green tea, a bowl, a spoon, a mug, six notebooks, many textbooks, my tennis shoes, some aspirin, a box of tissues, a spare toothbrush, a change of clothes, a box of granola bars, an extra sweater, and a card from the Poet to make me smile.
Long days and all, it’s good to be back. I love my classes. I can tell that my Friday classes are going to be especially good to me. I start the day at 8:30 with Stage Combat, then it’s off to Theatrical Clown, both of which I am endlessly excited about. Sadly, we don’t get to start working with our noses for another two weeks— I’m an impatient little clown. On Friday afternoons, I have Co-Lab. For the first project, I’m working on a beautiful play by the wonderful Daniel Pearle called Three Women Against the Sea, which is a contemporary retelling of the story of Ruth and Naomi in the Old Testament.
It’s wonderful to be back in class, but the majority of my week was consumed by auditions.
At The New School for Drama, the 2nd Year Acting students audition at the beginning of the year for two main stage productions— one in the fall, one in the spring. (Am I repeating myself. I think I might be. Whatever.) In the fall, we’re doing Elmer Rice’s The Adding Machine directed by Lou Jacobs. In the spring, we take on The Chekhov Project, adapted by Robert Hoyt and directed by Casey Biggs. Initial auditions were on Wednesday night up in the theatre. Though the nervous energy throughout the halls made me want to vomit, I felt good about the work I brought in. On Thursday, my classmates and I nervously hovered around the call-board waiting for the Call-Back list to be posted. That night, I read for Judy in The Adding Machine with my pal Mackenzie (who is attached to my hip this semester— we have every single one of our classes together and happen to be cast in the same Co-Lab project) and last night, I read for Irina, the youngest of the famed Three Sisters for The Chekhov Project. I felt good about my Judy— the promiscuous little thing who enjoys late-night jaunts to graveyards. I was also happy with how my Chekhov call-back went. My sobs produced lots of laughter thanks to the twisted Chekhovian humor.
In any case, it’s all done with. Now the waiting game begins. Cast lists should go up Tuesday, though people are already buzzing about who’s playing what part and who heard what in the hallways about casting.
But none of that really matters, does it? Here I am, typing away, and I’d already forgotten about the feeling I came home on Wednesday night with. Shame on me.
I’d been feeling unsettled for the past few weeks. Something didn’t feel right. I was feeling restless and lost and stuck and all of those other nasty and cliché things. I also haven’t been onstage since early May. I hadn’t put together that perhaps I was feeling out of sorts because I’m an actor who wasn’t acting. As soon as a walked out of the theatre on Wednesday night, I knew that’s what had been wrong. My audition on the main stage lasted maybe four minutes, if that. But for just a few minutes, I was connecting with someone. Really connecting. I was doing work I could be proud of and making tiny statements about things that are very important to me, things that are close to my heart. One of my acting teachers nodded and smiled at me as I left the theatre and, as soon as I stepped into the lobby, I started to cry. It’s what had been missing. The entire walk home, I couldn’t stop thinking about how incredibly lucky I am to get to study what I love in this place with these people.
As the days at school get longer and I start running on less and less sleep, I need to hang on to that feeling. When I start whining about being exhausted and hungry and drained, someone remind me. Please?
This seems like the only appropriate thing to post in an update about auditioning. The original cast of A Chorus Line doing “I Hope I Get It”. Also appropriate since I auditioned for Bob LuPone on Wednesday– the head of The New School for Drama, yes, but also the fellow playing Zach in this here video, teaching dance combinations and making cuts and decisions. And so it continues…
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