Thursday, December 22, 2011


It is so hard to believe that the holiday season is upon us already. I am truly stunned. Been blissfully buried in the process of rehearsing and performing The Memory of Water by Shelagh Stephenson. I had an intuition that this show was going to be the play of the season here in ABQ. My hunch proved correct by all accounts of theater goers and reviews. Check out Christie Chisholm's review in the ABQ Alibi by clicking here. So proud so proud so proud.

Another highlight of this year has been rekindling my chops as a teacher of acting. Haven't really done it in years but realized that my MFA was sort of curdling from lack of use... so out it came at Sol Acting Academy. I was literally on my way to Target to buy my new uniform... red shirt, khaki pants... to start training as a barrista in their Starbucks when the email came that Laura Mathis was looking for instructors. Whew. That was a close call. As grateful as I am to Target for offering me a job, working in my field is just... well... better.

The classes are amazing. People's talent just bowls me over. Sometimes its that turning point in the process where you see them simply and quietly slip into character without a trace of self consciousness or outside awareness... they just become part of the moment unfolding in the scene... having a real experience right there in front of us... Or the moment of complete mayhem in the midst of an improv when nobody knows what's going on, when suddenly the right lines, actions and behaviors burst forth bringing the whole scene to a hilarious conclusion. In both cases its that present moment awareness that swings the door wide to total immersion in the creative process.

And lucky me... I get to do it all again next year... only more so ...

Wishing you a blessed holiday season!

One of my new head shots from Kyle Zimmerman Photography ~ check out the rest at Pictage!

Sunday, September 4, 2011

Dreams do come true

I first started this blog in March of 2009, while taking steps to reacquaint myself to the craft of acting after a 7 year hiatus. Since then, I have done ten projects. Four plays, two TV shows, and four films. I am beyond happy about this...

Today I am writing to celebrate having booked and filmed my first feature film role to work with a really interesting group of people. For me, it was a dream job, playing a woman of authority with sixteen (16) pages of dialogue in five scenes with the star of the film, the amazing Katia Winter. Five pages is a lot for a person who has only done a handful of day player roles. Sixteen pages of good dialogue is stunning. Its an Elevated Horror Film based in fact... check it out here... The Banshee Chapter.  I hope you like scary films.. this is one mofo of a scary movie. In a good way mind you. ;-)

I've been trying to write about the experience for almost a month, and have found myself in such a contented, non-reflective space that its been hard to find words or actually the inclination. Just been enjoying the ride.

In the first audition, I challenged my self to slow down. Take my time. Do all the things that Basil Hoffman talked about in his workshop. Put into gear the way I would approach a first reading of a theater piece. Connect, focus. etc. so the call back with director/writer Blair Erickson and producer Corey Moosa was a blast, because the note was - step on each others lines. Interrupt. have fun. Them's r notes I know how to take!

Couple of days past and the call from Lynette at O' Agency came while I was in an AA meeting. I had my phone turned off but half way through the meeting I got this warmth in my heart chakra and felt this giggle starting to well up inside. I was sitting with an old friend who was visiting from LA. I thought must be something about hanging out with pals from early sobriety... but it kept happening. I had to stifle it a couple of times. Of course, when I turned on the phone, there was the message. I had the offer from Before the Door Productions and Sunchaser Entertainment to play Olivia Kmiec in Blair Erickson's The Banshee Chapter.

I felt this calm come over me. Like a sort of "ahhhh.... " of satisfaction and happiness. I guess the best word for it is reassurance. Just felt so nice. More about the experience of shooting my scenes in a later post... with pictures too!

Thursday, July 7, 2011

Art and Promotion

Ahh... the ageless balance between art and the marketplace. It plagues me, mostly when I am in Marketeer Mode for Art of the Song, but it does raise its head around my work as actor, teacher and all around "professional trying to make a living doing what I trained to do."

So often, when the subject of marketing and fundraising comes up, someone will roll their eyes and say, "Yes, if we could only just get paid to do what we love to do..." and with a heavy sigh, changes the subject.

I am fortunate that I trained a lot to do what I love well. As did all the scientists at Sandia Labs, and Intel. The difference is in the application that I have chosen. I did not go the academic route with my Masters degree, or into management. I trained to perform. What I am wrestling with is that the life plan for a management position or an academic is quite different than that of an indie performer/producer. So how does one create a model that becomes sustainable?

Three things come to mind:
  • Honor that my creative work has an important role in the world, people's lives and my own
  • Show up for the work as one would a nine - five job in the marketplace (it just may be 12 midnight to 3 am and another shift from 11 am - 6 pm)!
  • Create a strategic plan, and an operating plan, and let them be as creative an expression as the writing or the performing.
okay actually six things:
  • Rewards - my friend Deonne used to give herself french toast when she finished a particularly hideous, non creative job in service to her favorite is Annapurna Chai... 
  • Meditate & workout -  it really helps
  • Gratitude list - again, a life saver. I have this low grade grumble that occurs in the back of my conscious thought that soaks up good memory like those pesky apps that launch and use up all the RAM on your desktop, slowing down your computer... Gratitude eliminates them pretty fast... 
So today, I am in full on markeeter mode, finishing our Not for Profit application, promoting our Indie Go Go campaign and by and large showing up in everyone's mailbox like that penny... but I choose to believe that its a penny you can save, spend and enjoy!

Saturday, July 2, 2011

First Rehearsal

It's such a great thing. That first table read. A bit terrifying as we all do the getting to know you thing. Finding each other in this new space. Building this new world. But then, the scripts come out and the words start to flow. The characters begin to emerge as the rhythms and senses start to kick in to gear.

I am honored to be joining Camino Real Productions production of Rancho Pancho under the direction of Diane Malone. The play is a beautiful insight into the life of Tennessee Williams as seen through the eyes of his long time companion Pancho Rodriguez. Carson McCullers pays a steamy visit, and Margo Jones appears as well. Tennessee is played by Santiago Candelaria, Pancho by Benny Briseno, Carson is played by Tina Puglisi and I have the great pleasure of portraying Margo Jones.

Margo was the brains and much of the time the brawn behind the early development of regional theater as we know it today. What a thrill to dig into her life and thought process. There's a great video about her if you are interested, dear reader, called Sweet Tornado. I can't wait to see it.

Her directing credits included Summer and Smoke premier, Inherit the Wind's premier and the unveiling of Dark at the Top of the Stairs. What an ear for really good scripts. I hope some of her abilities rub off on me!

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Audio Blog

Wonder of wonders... last week I was in Santa Fe for the first of four weeks of training as a facilitator of monologue work based on the work of my friend Tanya Taylor Rubenstein. I am really really really excited about the process and the opportunities. It is the perfect marriage (I know, I already have one...) between my life as a performing artist and the nagging feeling that I would also like to be doing more in the world.

Julia Cameron brought the 12 steps to those who had no 12 step program to turn to but needed one with her Artists Way. I am viewing this adventure as a means to bring all the meaning and value of actor training to those who only want to visit that particular ledge for a short time, rather than taking up residence there.

Here is an audio link to an essay that I did a while ago, talking about my entry into this path. Give it a listen and let me know what you think. Its less than five minutes long.

Click here for my Audio Essay about my Struggle with the Art vs Therapy question

Happy listening...

Thursday, June 16, 2011

swear to god...

I will get better at posting regularly. It seems that every post starts that way. But now I am determined.

Since starting this blog a few years ago, I have been extremely lucky to find that the acting career I love is reciprocating ... a lot.

I am now 53 and the labyrinth has been filled with new adventures, amazing new colleagues and opportunities. I am continually amazed at how the universe responds when you surrender to your heart path and follow its lead.

2011 is providing two plays, a web series (Cyphers - awesome), and now adding teaching to the list.
Its been 7 years since I was in studio leading a class. And this is my first with teens, so its taking a bit of stretching the old brain cells into a more flexible and inspired place but the kids are incredible talents. The adult class is amazing, too. Such courage and grace!

In the coming weeks I'll be checking in with updates about the solo workshop I am taking with Tanya Taylor Rubenstein, as well as our rehearsals for Rancho Pancho (for which I am now a red head) about Tennessee Williams in ABQ.

Look for me here... I swear to god...