Saturday, December 24, 2011

Christmas Eve Shoes

Merry Christmas to all!
My family always does Christmas Eve dinner at their house. At times we've had as many as 30 or more come over for the epic spread. It's potluck-esque with everybody bringing a dish but still a ton of work. It makes me feel very grateful to all my aunts and uncles who are willing to host other holidays. Not only do they do it with pizazz, they also do it with joy. I do it with wine. And then lots of coffee to get me back and up running to go to Mass.
It's been a rainy Christmas in Tejas. The weather has been akin to what it would have been if I had stayed home. Which is pretty crazy. Newark and Houston do not often have matching weather. It's a Christmas miracle.
Went ahead with some haircutting. Short bob. As always, I fret about it and then love it shorter. I'm rocking some old plaid pumps. They don't clash too much with my beloved blue jerssey dress. They were probably my first peep toes. The buttons look pretty dated, but overall not bad for old shoes.
I'm debating rocking them with my beret and my grandmother's wool penguin coat (or as I like to call it, my inheritance. Pics of it to come later. Or just find me wearing it in NY) to mass tonight. Classiness. No matter what I do, I will be way over dressed. Why not also be ecentric? What can I say? I enjoy being fabulous!
The infamous plaid shoes. It's Christmas and I'm Scottish. And yes. My foot is beveled! :-)

Thursday, December 22, 2011

Late Night Laduca Musings

Laduca shoes are the industry standard right now. Softer than Capezios with an option of seude or hard soles, a variety of different strappy designs, and different heel heights (the higher the better!). Chorines, leading ladies, and chorus boys all happily trot around the country with their trusty Laducas. I have two pairs I scrimped and saved for, and after dancing in them for a few years, (prepare for blasphemy) I don't think I will buy new ones (Though they do have a fabulous one day a year sale...)
I love the leather they are made of. Soft, buttery Italian leather encasing your tired tootsies. It's not all that sturdy when it ones to the abuse dancers put their shoes through. (Though it does smell heavenly. The scent of new and fabulous leather just makes you feel expensive and luxurious.) The black shoes can be polished and rebirthed, but the tan ones start to look like pretty ratty. My old Capezio war horses stood up much better. Plus, you could run over those things with a tank.
The heel is funny. It flares too much at the base and somehow manages to feel wobbly. I have mine braced due to my feer of heel snappage. A snapped high heel is serious in this business. These aren't just high heels. It's showgirl war!

A pink pair of Laducas! See what I mean about the heels.
So what does a girl do? For now I'm waiting for their one day sale. Maybe a smaller price tag would endear me more to them. Or if I picked up a really pretty pair in a fun color (once again at the sale). Do I defect back to Bloch? I loved my Blochs. They pointed beautifully and fit my square toes to a tee! Whatever I do, I will still be writing those shoes off as a business expense. Tools of the trade!
Hey Phil. Design me a pair and you might win back my loyalty! Hahahaha.This pair from Contact was pretty glam... :-)

Christmas Oreos!

Best follow up to a dentist visits: Christmas oreos with red fillings (and fun graphics!) and a cup of coffee. I get classy points.
Returning to Houston, I am finding the following to be true:
1. I don't like driving everywhere. Everything is spread out way too much.
2. It's hot.
3. In suburbia, it's OK to wear sweatpants out if they are velour and fitted. I disagree and look way over styled.
4. The skinny jean invasion has not wreaked as much havoc here. (I write as wear mine) This could be due to many woman realizing they are unflattering on their bodies or just due to plain stubborness. Don't take away my boot cut!
My parents huge Christmas junkies, and even through the significant rough seas they've had to deal with recently, they have turned their home into a Christmas winter wonderland. Lights, garlands, bows, and a tree for every room. Christmas is serious business for the Chilton clan. :-)
We had a birthday dinner for my granddad yesterday. He was in much better spirits than I though he would be. I got him to watch White Christmas with me. Red velvet cake and turkey pie for dinner. Yum! Not bad for an 89 year old widowerer. Grandma was there in spirit chastising my arrangement of candles on the cake and making sure everything was perfect for her number one man.
More laustable objects from window shopping with Jeffrey. Ralph Lauren flapper party. Christmas fantasies. I would totaly spill red wine all over this dress that would pay my rent for several months. :-)

Monday, December 19, 2011

Fierce Shoes and Christmas Visits

Christmas is coming the goose is getting fat. Which means New York is overcrowded with tourists looking for "the Tree" and going to see the Adams Family.
It also meant that people are glammed up for holiday parties. And very rarely, does money come with taste. In honor of the tasteless rich women in the tri state area, I now post shoes that I could rock. Instead, I will wear my grandmother's schwanky green satin pumps from the 60's. And possibly her beaver coat too, but since I am going to visit family in Texas, you don't really wear more than a sweater in that heat.
But if I had tons of money to blow, and I wasn't making DIY Christmas gifts (though I made some really good ones), I would totally buy these (on sale for 569 dollars! Hahahaha) and rock them at the five million holiday parties I go to (or work at.) (I could also retitle my blog "have Louboutins. Am Fierce.)

Reality is different. Packing a bag to go to Houston. Clothes for Christmas mass. I am bringing a pair of fierce shoes home to perk up my senile Grandmother. She was a shoe woman in her day, and she can no longer wear them or remember what day it is, but she still appreciates her some fierce shoes.
Especially if they're green.

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

The Sugar Momma/Daddy/Spouse Plan

Life changes as we keep moving along, but some things stay basically the same. I went to an audition today. They only kept ethnic girls for Legally Blonde, Zombie Prom, Tarzan, and Ave Q. Not ethnic shows. We danced Legally Blonde. Well, I guess their sorority girls were very different than the ones I remember. Shorter, white, and on the chunky side is what I remember. Black, Asian, and ethnically ambiguous got kept off a very simple combo. Oh well. The theatre was just in Southern Virginia, and I thought it would be really cool to book a job there and get to visit some family. (My great aunt-ish Miriam sent me a Christmas card from Southern VA that I just got today. Which made me super happy!)
I met up with a couple of friends later on in the afternoon. Jeffrey, I went to college with and I did a show in Houston with Megan. We are all in our 20s, work crappy jobs at odd hours, spend lots of time going to and fro on mass transit, and can't wait for the day we land all of the following: Broadway show, rich spouse, and Park Ave apartment. (I think the sugar daddy/momma/spouse probably has the apartment and we just move in from our artistic hovels in the outer boroughs and Jersey into the Park Ave apartment. At least that is how this works in my fantasy land. Plus, my sugar daddy/loving and very rich spouse looks like Gerard Butler. Fantasies are fun!)
We went up to 81st and then headed down
through Central Park and down Park Ave salivating at store windows. We longed over clothes we couldn't ever afford. And at Tiffany's. Jeffrey's prep school style looked longingly at the very spiffily (spell check insists that is not a word. Boo!) decorated Ralph Lauren store windows, while I lusted after a black velvet pants suit at Max Mara (testament to it's awesomeness, I am normally a dress girl. Short, curvy girl plus pants suit is not always the best idea. But this was beautiful!) If there is one thing that I have learned working expensive benefits: people who have money do not always have taste. So why do we with no money have fabulous taste? The ever popular question of people in their 20s without trust funds.
After deciding its was a no go on seeing theatre (between what we had seen and what we had collectively not seen, it was difficult to find something we all wanted to pay for. And we were hungry.) We grabbed burritos and drinks at Blockheads. Signs we are old. One drink and it is 730 an we are feeling it. We all got second drinks because we planned on sitting there in their lovely heat longer (and they were cheap. And the Mexican bus boy was antsy.). Last ditch attempts at being bright young things on our nights off, decaf coffee. Then we all headed back on our trains. Home long before midnight and ready for bed. No longer in college are we, but it was still a fun day. We may paint the town much differently than we used to, but it is still a good time. We may not have much now, but our possibilities are endless. At least they are once we've made enough to pay the bills that month.
Oh yeah. I worked on Damages yesterday. Short day. Get paid. Get out. No John Goodman or Glenn Close scenes. Bummer. But life moves on. And one can get their free monthly chocolate at Godiva! (Almost as good as a paid for Park Ave apartment!)

Sunday, December 11, 2011

For Grandma

This afternoon, I found out that my Grandma Ruth had died. She had a heart attack and went quick. Which is a blessing in it's own way. Not lingering and fading slowly like my other grandma. In her honor tonight, I write this.
I have just watched Babe, listened to some kickass stride piano, ate my stash of truffles, and drunk some Scotch in her honor. May she and her magical jazz fingers always stay with me. She will be sorely missed,but always be with me and the rest of her family. As my boo would say, she was a BAMF.

Weekend Update

I went to a singer's call yesterday morning with a new song. The holding room was empty and they took me right away. I sang my cut. The response. "That was very sweet." I don't expect to hear from them and I don't plan on using that song again. Oh well. Ballads and I just don't seem to get a long. Maybe I just need to find an even goofier one.
I spent the rest of the day wandering about with different groups of people. By the end of the night, Stacey and I ended up with tickets to Lysistrata Jones. Which was fabulous. Go see it. You will laugh really hard. And it has glitter cannons. Cheapest student tickets I've ever had for a musical (25 with all the fees). Plus, we were in box seats. Sweet!
Entertaining calls for background this week include Pan Am stewardess with the following measurements 32A- 24- 35. To put this in perspective, I wear an xs and a 2 or a 4. This woman would make me look fat. Another fun call was for Olivia Wilde's latest project. They are looking for the "hotest" women in New York. And they misspelled it twice in the notice. :o
Work is dry right now. No parties for next week. Not that much filming (and they like to film when I want to hit up an audition). I did really well in November, and I thought December would be even better. Dame fortune is fickle and jealous of my fierce shoes. But I do have cash coming in later in the month for a New Year's Eve party. It'll be tight, but all right. (Yes, I meant to rhyme that. I am a dork)
I'm debating a new hairstyle again. I seem to do this every so often. For a huge chunk of my life, I kept the same long, stick straight, 70s esque hairstyle. Then I got antsy about life and my sweet, nice girl hair in college. As a freshman, I cut my own hair. It could have been worse. Kay fixed it and I wore a medium length, Meg Ryan esque, shaggy cut for a couple of years.
Next change- I added copper highlights. Fun, but I couldn't wear quite as many ridiculous colors and the dye has a mind of its own. It stayed fairly copper (my hair naturally has a lot of red in it), but it would morph to a slightly different tone everyday. Plus, it was expensive to get it dyed. (I watched friends in college do their own hair out of a box. The good, the black that was supposed to be brown, and the partial Rainbow Brite. Whoops. No thank you!)
Enter my junior year of college in which the only role I was cast in was Snow White in Into the Woods. Hurrah. Before I knew that I was getting to take choreo to ACDFA (which rocked), I had a moment of panic. I needed to change something in my life, I had my hair bobbed in Oklahoma. Woo!Ch-ch-ch-changes Mr. Bowie!
That Christmas, I told Kay to do whatever she wanted. I ended up with a shaggy pixie. I'm not sure if it was actually Mom hair, or just my own panic about the possibility of having Mom hair. I went back to the bob where I have stayed ever since.
But I'm antsy again. Do I want to go shorter again? If I do it soon, I have time for it to grow out a little bit over the holidays. Decisions. Decisions.
I love Marcella's short hair here. (She's the one in the middle)She's currently rocking a much longer doo. I like her better with the short hair.

Friday, December 9, 2011

Brilliant Ideas and Little People

Bret and Jermaine need to write a musical. Look who's writing on Broadway right now- pop and rock all over the place. They already have an apt sense of theatre, a unique voice, and an ability to turn the most mundane moment into a funny and momentous catchy song. Bret just wrote the songs for the Muppet Movie (which were brilliant. Who doesn't have me parties?). Plus, you left the theatre singing his songs. There were catchy, funny, and just plain singable. Something missing from a lot of musical comedies being written in this day and age (Catch me If you zzzzz...). There are talks about Flight of the Conchords movie, which would be sweet, but they need to write a musical. They seem a more sane choice to me than Bono or Regina Spektor (though I do love me some Regina). Plus, they would be a younger audience demographic. Love me some Anything Goes, but I saw it while I was on my senior showcase trip. The small crew of enthralled MT's spread out in the sea of blue hairs. It would also be a side option for tourists on dates. You don't have to be drug to Wicked by your girlfriend. (Good luck getting Book of Mormon Seats. And depending on your lady friend's sensibilities, good luck getting any sugar after she is offended by it.) Why not try some Bret and Germaine instead? You're nerdy girlfriend would love it almost as much as the green girl down the street! They don't push the offensive limit to the South Park level (It don't care as long as it's funny, but it bothers some girls.). And you still get good boyfriend points for going to see a musical. My ex and I used to trade who picked the movie on movie night. So that means he watched Victor/Victoria and I watched Withnail and I. The things you do for other people. :)
I lost my train of thought! Choo Choo. Anyways, they should write a musical. It could be really awesome. This has been another brilliant idea brought to you by a little person with absolutely no power. But I do make a mean cup of coffee!

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

More Money Than Sense

Atlantic City is not a spot of glamour and fun. It might have been in it's heyday, but all that remains is the deceptive glitz of the casinos and some really impoverished neighborhoods around it. Not a boardwalk empire anymore.
The gig went all right. Costumes didn't work with the choreo. I lost my big plastic Indonesian hat three times in the fan dance, but all of the diners were eating and not watching us. It was a fairly sedate middle aged crowd with a penchant for kitten heels. (Yuck) For an expensive benefit, most of the ladies shoes would have worn perfectly at my junior high school Valentine's dance. You can have money, but it doesn't mean you have taste. (or sense. They could have hired real Balinese dancers, but they wanted us!)
We were all slightly panicked when we saw at least a third of the guests were real Asians (unlike us), but they all turned to be quite nice and chill. We crashed out in our hotel and headed back home the next morning. Not the worst way to earn some money.
I worked background on Smash yesterday. It's supposed to air after the Superbowl. Between inefficency, poor writing, and casting American Idolers where they ought not be, I don't think the show will have much of a run. (Like the party: more money than sense) Hopefully the prove me wrong. (Craft services and catering were awesome! If only the could share that through the TV.)
It's raining and I need to do laundry. Blegh. I might be rocking some Muppets over my headphones at the laundry mat. It's the only way I'm getting any kind of motivation!

Friday, December 2, 2011

Eclectic, Crooked, and Accompanied by John Denver and the Muppets

I got in at 2 in the morning from Houston Tuesday and still haven't quite got my steam back. I can just feel my body trying to get sick. Not now please!
It's been a busy week. Auditions, rehearsals, and the ever present gig hunt. I turned down a gig with the puppet troupe that would be an insane amount of work for very little money and keep me from visiting the family during Christmas. It was a question of some money or some big Irish family time. As a workaholic, I have to remember to give myself breaks and playtime. Even if that playtime is Muppet Christmas sing a longs with John Denver and my family. (You can just guess who sounds better)
I got together with an old friend yesterday. It had been five years since I had last seen Brian. We're both older in body not spirit and still finding ways to deal with and get around life. And drinking too much coffee. If that is possible.
A combination of weather, tired, and just post Thanksgiving blues have hit me this week. Which is weird. In college, post Thanksgiving blues did not occur. It was the push to the finish. Which generally meant getting a show up, auditions, choreography showings, and finals. Not enough time to be blue. Barely enough time to sleep and put up my tiny Christmas tree. (But still enough time for lots of wine mulling. It can accompany everything. At least Leta, Alex, and I thought so!)
But now my Christmas tree is up. My landlord left it, and it's bigger than the one I had in college. By a lot. It's eclectic and crooked but somehow it is making my apartment feel warmer, cozier, and cheerier. I have a job this weekend. I have one on Monday (background props crew on Smash. College revisited if they give me a paintbrush.) and the possibility of another on Wed that would be really cool. (I'm not saying what it is cause I don't want to jinx it.) John Denver and the Muppets are playing in the background and I am going to bed early. Put the blues away and get down to working.
Tom, I head to Atlantic City with Chezzam and pretend to be a Balinese dancer. Someday, someone will want to hire me in my kilt. Doing the manly Scottish dances I used to rock at Highland Games (when I remembered the steps). When that day comes, I will be ready (and feel like a giant dork), but for now, work what I can get!
(If this doesn't make you happy, you are dead to me.

The Leaning Tower of Christmas!

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Traveling into December!

So another November comes to an end. I paid my bills this month doing nothing but acting/dance odd jobs. I got callbacks. I made a giant ass of myself a few times. And I danced for Jesus and belted my face off on a regular basis. Then I wrapped it all up with Thanksgivings and Christmas tree decoratings. (Yes, I did mean for both of those to be plural.)
Settling into life after college has been interesting. And fun. I had been programmed for the goal of college. 4 sleepless years later, the university kicks you to the curb. "Go conquer the world, and do and use all that stuff we taught you." I was so scared when I crammed my life into my compact car and moved to New Jersey. What was I doing? I never had ambitions to be a star. I just wanted to dance around the room and play let's pretend for the rest of my life. And I still do.
What strikes me is that there is so much out there. Yes, you have to weed through lots of crap, but eventually so thing will sparkle. Just keep putting yourself out there. Sometimes you fall on your face. Get right back up and keep going. There is always another road to take and lots of destinations. Go traveling! (I'm waiting for a delayed flight right now. Travel is on the brain!)
On a less squooshey and inspirational note, my little brother lit himself on fire and missed Thanksgiving dinner (2nd Thanksgiving the one that actually occurred on Thanksgiving.) He is a freshman in the Corps of Cadets at Texas A and M. Shining his shoes, he overmelted the shoe polish, lit it on fire, and then proceeded to spread the fire to his pants, floor, and desk. He wasn't hurt, so it's a funny story to spread. Apparently lighting the wax on fire is a regular Corps whoopsie. Plus he already had a nick name, so he won't spend his collegiate years as "Sparky." He ended up with one doozie of a nickname already. He is big boy. He plays rugby and towers over most his classmates and a lot of the upperclassmen. So they have named him Shamu. I look forward to Shamu themed presents I get to give him over the next few years!
If I make it to New Jersesy tonite (pray to the weather gods for me), I have a full day of auditions slated for tom. Rehearsal on Thurs for a gig in Atlantic City. Then I get to work at Ceasar's Palace this weekend. Hello December!

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Being A Crazy Person....

I've been super busy of late. Which is awesome.
Saturday night I worked a benefit for St. Francis Hospital. Note to self, next time I work a Catholic hospital benefit, look for a priest's collar before I start flirtily hawking my candy cigarettes. Or a Bishop's miter. Whoops.
Sunday night I worked my first overnight for a big feature film called Fiona's Tale. (Google it.) I signed a non disclosure agreement for the first time in my life. No movie stars involved, just a bunch of extras, PA's, and some rain. At least it was warm outside!
Now being a crazy person, I proceeded to go home, sleep two hours, and head back to midtown for an audition. Why? Because this dinner theatre in the middle of nowhere had White Christmas on it's roster. Someday, I will book White Christmas! And a Christmas Carol! Just not at the same time.
Tired and wonkey, I sang around three. Super live room, attempted soft belting (hahahaha), and a dance callback at 6. In flats. Which meant they weren't currently looking for White Christmas ladies. Great. Happy Days, Smokey Joe's, and Little Shop. I had showgirl wear and sneakers. Tacky!
Grabbed a skirt on sale at H and M to wear with the leotard and sneaks. Starbucks for dinner (I'm living off gift cards from my parents. Win!) And back to Pearl to get thru it on very little sleep.
Of course it was fast, long, and energetic. It was the dance off scene from Happy Days (a show I should apparently get to know better). I killed it. At least I think I did. Sleep deprivation plus adrenaline doesn't lead to the best perception of events. I danced for Jesus. And hopefully he will answer me with a job (I did see stars after I did the ending layout. A sign from the heavens? Or just my low blood pressure kicking in?)
This theatre only hires a small chunk of people from New York. If they are looking for dancers, I should have a job. But the harsh reality of it is they might just be looking for certain roles. You go in, dance for Jesus, sing for Allah, and then pray to Buddah that you fill their casting holes. Putting yourself in the right place at the right time is a huge part of it. "Luck if you've ever been a lady to being with...."
Being crazy, I caught a flight early Tuesday to Tejas for some Thanksgiving with the family. I have already missed first Thanksgiving, but I will make second and third Thanksgiving. My parents treated me to TexMex and an epic liquor run. (It's the yearly holiday stock up!) I made pumpkin cookies and slept for eleven hours. I've already got one big gig booked with Chezzam the first weekend of December. No need to panic over my life for the next few days. I can relax, sleep, catch up with the big Irish fam, and drink and eat too much. Sounds like a great vacation to me! :-)

Thursday, November 17, 2011

Fun, Sweat, and Cake in a Mug

Yesterday I went to A Spiderman call. It was fun. We were taught the bit with the Green Goblin hallucinating the crazy versions of the students cheering him on. Totally took me back to my Reefer Madness days in college. Good times. They weren't currently hiring, but I worked up a sweat and had a good time.
This morning I went to a Mamma Mia! call. It was tons of fun. It was pretty much a Chezzam event. Ponies, cheezy improv, and dance club music. (Born This Way for my dear friend Lord GaGa. If only he had been there.) I had a great time. I did the bump and shimmied with complete strangers. A successful morning indeed.
I came home early to avoid the Occupy Wall Streeters subway story telling plans. They plan to occupy 16 stops at 3. I don't know what will happen, I just hope there is no violence. "Times is hard" and that can bring out the worst in people. It can also bring out the best. I will hope for that as I clean and eat my cake in a mug out in my Jersey apartment. Yes, Thursday afternoon is a great time to make cake in a mug. Nom nom nom!

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Irish In The Best Way Possible

So yesterday for lack of something better to do, I went to a Wiz call. Nothing else was going on. So why not?
The production team was all black with a concept for the show. (Anyone with a college theatre degree hears the word concept and groans. I def did.) It was post Katrina New Orleans and all about being black. Needless to say, they cut me. I'm used to being the whitest girl in the room, just not by that much. Free class and a side of awkwardness.
Rock of Ages non union tour this morning. They started off by telling us they weren't actually hiring. And that they wouldn't consider anyone who was dressed. Though they did keep people who were covered. Hmmmm. Well. I went in a bra, bootie shorts, and fishnets. No job, but kudos to myself to working it out amongst the skinny minnies.
Kiling time before I go sing for another audition. Titanic. I'm great with period white people shows. Irish steerage passengers? Wait, that was my family.
The Starbucks at 54th and B'way is my favorite in the city. The staff is always awesome. The music is usually jamming. And you're still close enough to Times Square that people watching can be really funny. Tourists make my day. (The old lady at the payphone in a polka dot cardigan and black canvas Indiana Jones-esque hat is quickly becoming my new hero.)
This week is pretty hopping, which is good. I'm just trying to make as many calls as I can. I'm working at a hospital benefit on Sunday. I'm a cigarette girl at a speakeasy, and we are getting raided by the Keystone copes. Cheesey? Yes. I would like some Velveeta with my cheese whiz. Then it's back to Houston where I will hit up three different family Thanksgivings. My family likes to party. Especially if there is food and booze involved. We are Irish in the best way possible. :)

Sunday, November 13, 2011

Mazel Tov! Or Making Money

I drove into midtown yesterday. There is a reason no one drives into midtown. It sucks.
I started off with construction in Jersey. Led to backup in Manhattan. Batman filming made getting over the bridge to Queens hellish. I had the company choreographer in the car along with several other dancers. The guys are both superchill. They took being stuck in traffic the only way you can around here- with weary resignation. It is what it is.
The odd mix of aggressive and passive driving actually makes sense in the city. It's almost a collaborative effort in driving. Certainly less frustrating than rush hour in downtown Houston. The driving is aggressive, but in a give and take sort of way. New York City would be much more frightening to drive thru if they all drove like Texans. Of course, Texans would not jaywalk as much as New Yorkers. But if you go by stereptypes, they would also have guns. Traffic violence Tejas style.
Even though the driving to and from was not an easy gig, the gig itself was very easy. The Bar Mitzvah boy had mild asbergers that he had channeled into instruments. He did some pretty impressive guitar, drums, and piano playing with the band. Which was also awesome because the dance floor became a concert floor. With everybody watching and not dancing, less work for us!
The moms were having a great time and dancing up a storm, which made our job so much easier. Our boss even cut our number because the dance floor was going strong and she didn't want to stop it. We flashmobbed it instead.
One long roundabout drive home, after inching thru the Holland Tunnel and taking detours (I would rather have paid the toll and gotten home earlier. Or really, I would rather Chezzam had paid the toll), I finally made it home around 230 am. I had been gone for 12 hours. I made it in and out of midtown twice, made some money, and scared a bunch of young Jewish boys by asking them to dance. Not a bad day at all. :)

Friday, November 11, 2011

A Day of Wow...

Deadly Sins was all I hoped it would be. Cheesy sides and a constrant stream of dark haired women in their 20s. I did my best at being myself on camera. That is all I can do.
Afterwards, I went and grabbed Spiderman-Turn Off That Hot Tranny Mess rush tickets for Jeffrey and I.
Time killing in Manhattan with Jeffrey means lots of walking. I've been wearing myself to the bone lately, and I was thankful for the moments those long legs of his would stand still!
And then on to Spiderpig.
It was better than I thought it would be, but ultimately, it never felt like it had a mutli million dollar price tag. It felt more like an amusement park stunt show. The little boys behind me loved it, but it never really operated on an adult level.
Design wise, it felt confused. It started off fairly abstract. Lots of forced perspective and sketched out 2d items (which made both Jeffrey and I think of Reefer Madness!). The costumes weaved in and out of reality and several different comic book styles. I will never understand the impetus to put pretty, young things in unflattering costumes. Whether it is for style or God know what reason. Musical Theatre is not reality. There were also some heinous wigs. Yes, it is a comic book, but it was up to the design team to make it look like a real world, even if it was stylized. They ultimately failed. No one world ever really materialized in any of the designs. Costumes were super Halloween costumey and sets were often too flimsy for use. (And the costumes for the Sinister Six were super bad. They looked like bad team mascots. As a graduate of the University of Tulsa I know all about bad team mascots...Just google Captain Cane.)
Reeve Carney as Peter Parker: he was better after he became Spidey tastic and could rock it out. His acting and his singing were weak as nerdy Peter Parker. He did much better when he could emo kid rock it out in his angsty little skinny jeans.
Rebecca Faulkenberry was on her first night as Mary Jane, and you could tell. Her acting was better than Carney's (not hard to do) but she was slow catching her stride. Just about every song was pitchy in the beginning (Unlike the chorus, who was pitchy throughout.) Once she got her stride, she rocked out. She just had to trip a few times first. (Shame on whoever dressed her constantly in unflattering pink things. What were they thinking?)
I'm not sure why TV Carpio's character was even kept in the show. Probably just to use the wires more. She did a decent job. All she had to was sing and hang. Vocally she was good, but half the time you didn't even see her face. Really, Arachne needs to be played by Bijork. Weird hanging Spidey lady guiding emo little Pete- definitely Bijork territory.
Patrick Page was the saving grace of the show. As Dr. Osbourne and the Green Goblin, he surpassed everyone else on stage. Though his comedic green "Splat" death was anti-climactic, he was fabulous. With some fabulous acting chops and a super awesome low rumbly voice, he even managed to command the stage during the most ludicrous plot points. He really needs to play Sweeney Todd. Swing that razor high, Patrick!
The choreo was a mix of modern and music video but it was never really that exciting. nir was the flying. Or the music. (Sorry Bono. I didn't come singing Spiderman. I was still singing Pal Joey from the night before.)
It could have been cool. It was sadly safe and unaffective. The entire show could have benefitted from staying away from some of the tricks and actually focusing on a plot. And cutting out the sinister six college mascots. Swiss Miss, Swarm, the Lizard, Electro, Kraven, and Carnage are just laughable. All in all, I would rather have been next door seeing Frank Langella in Man and Boy. Or quite a few other things.

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Hey! Where'd You Get Those Beautiful Blue Eyes?

At least I was done early today. Royal Caribbean was looking for dancers for their ship that does Chicago. Last time I auditioned for one of their musical ships, it was for Hairspray. I found out while there, that you also must dance the second show on the ship. Which was Cirque de cheesey. One of the tricks pulled me out of the running before I hit the third combination (which just happened to be the musical theatre combination). I was also the shortest girl in the room at that point. By a lot.
Long and the short of it, the girls didn't have to sing. They mouth the words on the ship. So what I thought would give me a leg up didn't, and they hired more all American looking, but still fairly typical cruise line dancers.
Chicago- they have to sing right. This will be different. I didn't make it past the typing combo. Woo! I know it wasn't technique or dancing. It was things like height and look. So, I got a latte and hopped on a train home. On my way back to Penn Station (all of like four blocks), I had two different big, blue collar guys tell me I had beautiful eyes. Not bad. The one even fought a little bit with his friends over telling me I was pretty. I might not always appeal to the sparkly musical theatre gays, but the straight men like me.
I loafed and did office work from home. It was nice to be a bum. And I got a call for an audition tom. It is an awesomely ridiculous job. It's for one of those hokey true crime shows. "Deadly Sins." Awesome!
A fellow set of blue eyes. I watched Pal Joey today for the five millionth time, so he was on my mind. And I like to add pictures to my posts. :)

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

I'm Not Model-y

Open call for Jersey boys. They were totally looking for girls who were model/music video-esque. I worked it, but knew I was getting cut. Oh well. It could always be worse.
I have to mind myself when they keep nothing but giraffey girls that there are jobs when they are out and I am in. We all have our time and season. And we make do until it comes along.
As a friend of mine said recently "You dance at bar mitzvahs....I play at bar mitzvah services." I worked with her years ago in Houston when I did Big River. She pulled me in for a few auditions in Houston, and she is super chill and awesome to work with. She is back in New York and working on the recording of a new musical. She asked to come sing for it. So of course, I said yes. It won't be a lot of money, but that is fine. It is work that I want to be doing. And she was so much fun to work with. Silver lining to my not a model cloud. Goodbye tall girls. Rockin the average height. And working it out.

Monday, November 7, 2011

Norma Jean Baker and Another Indie

The last few days have been nutz. I was last minute background on a bad indie film. I was cocerned about my early morning with Chezzam and wasn't going to take, but the casting directir said she could send me on the morning portion of the shoot instead of the evening one. We were supposed to be college kids, and the three early morning pickups looked like college kids. Which meant the director liked us. He had been having problems getting bacground he liked. Ge said that bacground for one scene that was wpsupposed to be collegiate looked "like an AA meeting." So h wanted to keep us for the second shift. At very little overtime. On Stanten Island. Blegh. (The casting director did strike again with an evening group of what the hells. It was supposed to be a frat party. It looked more a community college in Williamsburg. Hipsters.)
The short of a long day is that I ended up back home around 2am. I was driving for Chezzam and I had nothing prepared. My bag wasn't packed. My tax forms were not filled out. I crashed out and got up at 630 to get ready and go!
The party was huge and went well. I spent two hrs as Marilyn standing over a grate with air flowing up my skirts. While guests making jokes about how it was breezy (really clever guys), I was more concerned about loosing feeling to my feet.
After a whole lot of dancing, some quick cleaning of faces and dressing rooms, and an attack on the leftover gelato, I drove the Jersey contigent back. Not a bad way to make some money. I have a rehearsal for a Bar Mitzvah today. Possibilites of background work in the next few days. I'm working! It might not be Chekhov, but who cares! (or even likes Chekhov)

Friday, November 4, 2011

I Aways Thought I was More of a Jane

On Sunday I'm working with a company that does party entertainment. And somehow, I have ended up as theur Marilyn Monroe for their Hollywwod review. I always thought that I was more akin to Jane Russell in Gentlemen Prefer Blondes, but it's fun to get a brief chance at being blonde. And diamons are a girl's best friend. :)
I really love Gentlemen Prefer Blondes. It's like Christmas, but better. Sparkles, tap dancing (it's my Christmas after all), and plenty of gorgeous dresses and shoes. Who's cooling it with Coolidge? This crazy lady!
I'm killing time between our six hour rehearsal and an audition for some short Christmas plays. I haven't cold read in a while. We shall see how this goes. I'm hoping I get to read from the script with a trampy Martha Crachitt. Cause that whole idea makes me giggle.
Yesterday I went to the Chicago ECC. After a long wait they typed the shorties out. It was a mandatory union call, not actually hiring call. Boo. But I feel less crabby about after doing ridiculous dances all day long today. I can't wait to go home and crash out. I'm sleeping good tonight.

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

How SAG Helped Me Pay For A Haircut

Last night it was cold in Williamsburg. 30 something degrees. Not exactly good t-shirt weather. The Indie French feature I was doing background for was set in the summery- spring. Or something along those lines. Somewhere much warmer than the busy street corner we were standing on dressed as hipsters in the summer looking enviously at the real hipsters parkas and big sweaters. (One girl had a cape. It brought about more cape lust. As a kid, I wore my mom's cape from the 70s until it died. I now see capes and want one.)
The holding room (2 blocks aways) wasn't any better. It was gutted and unheated. Crafty was also fairly far (in the other direction) though there was good coffee. It was just hard to sneak off to. S0, we were COLD.
Luckily, one of the extras had the good common sense to call the union. Union rep arrives, we spent the rest of the shoot in a heated van with wonderful hand warmers. Real hipsters were already all over those shots of frozen young French people. Plus, we got a 50 dollar bump in our pay!
So today, I went and got my hair cut with my 50 dollar bump. The back of my bob is stacked quite nicely again and the edges are crisp and clean. It is once again too short to put in a pony tail. This means that for my long dance rehearsal with Chezzam on Friday, there is going to be some pigtail action! What every rehearsal needs. :)

Monday, October 31, 2011

Snowstorms, "Parties," and Vouchers

Happy Halloween (and first snow) to all!
This weekend has been weird. First, it snowed five inches on Saturday. In October. Weird. It being around Halloween created for odd parties and plans. Only the brave ventured out Sat, dressed to the nines. I certainly didn't. Power outages ran afoul of the roomie's fellow grad students attempts at a party, and before we knew it, we had half a dozen museum studies grad students in costumes with booze at our house. Let's just say, they might have considered it a party-party, but it in no way did it hit upon some of the crazier bashes I went to in college. Pizza, light boozing, and a movie. At one point, there was even some youtube clip watching. More college dorm messing around than Pike frat house. And it could not even get close to the annual theatre Halloween party. Now that was karazy.
Anyways, I spent today playing on casting networks, backstage, and actors access, submitting myself to anything that would stand still. Apparently several things stood still. I don't know if it is a combination of Halloween and weather (New Yorkers want out, film crews want to catch up), but I ended up with multiple offers to work background tom. Not bad. One was two day (which is sweet) , but I had already accepted the other that is supposed to come with an almighty SAG voucher. Sweeter! I can just imagine being those poor casting directors right now. Praying that they can find actors with the right look and availability that aren't off playing dress up at their favorite bar or club. As if we don't already play dress up all the time.
For those of mi familia who don't know, SAG is the Screen Actor's Guild. Actor's Equity is the stage Union. To join Equity, you get Equity membership candidate points. To join SAG, you get vouchers for your work. If you are a member of one for a year, you can join the other. It's a complicated muddle of fees, points, vouchers, and weirdness that is really hard to decipher, but it is better than nothing!
So, tom might be a long day of awkward hipster-dom (which hopefully means my sneaks are fine!), but hopefully I will have a lovely voucher and be that much closer to being union!

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Long Days and Pumpkin Ale

Yesterday was more akin to what I had expected from Pan Am. Plus it was non union on the background. Which meant we had to stand up for ourselves at times. It was an over 21 hour day by the time I got home. Living dead or vampires or just extras heading home from CT?
I seem to have a secret gift for being used towards the end of a shoot. I have to stand less and still get paid the same amount. Sweet. I was there being made up and dressed at 9 am. I wasn't used until 4 pm. Not so sweet. Ensue time wasting with books, talking, eating the assortment of unhealthy food in craftee, and drinking some of the worst coffee I've ever tasted.
The heat of the coffeee was phenomenal. And it was sooooooo cold in the club that we were filming in that we all drank it despite the awful taste. Chattering teeth or crappy coffee? I will always choose coffee.
I was even colder than most cause I was the only extra in a short dress. My other extra super power is being given a wardrobe that sticks out amongst the hordes of background. This time I was in a groovy orange and gold sheath dress with bracelet sleeves. Of course I had bracelet, huge clip on earring with orange sparkly flowers, and bizzare yellow shoes. Everyone else was in floor length gowns with furs. (I borrowed a fur to help not freeze, but did not have one to wear on set)
I was also the only short haired one. They had mod-ed me up for all I was worth. Twiggy eyes, lashes, cheeks, and hair. It was drastically different than my Pan Am look. It was also drastically different than the rest of the extras.
It's a short film that is meant to be part of a grindhouse trio. If you see the Morning After late at night as a triple feature, look for the sparkly gold mod. Really, I'll probably just be a blur, but I think my fake eyelashes could have taken over the entire film!
Background isn't the most exciting thing I've ever done, but it's a baby step. It's paychecks and meeting people. Finding a comfort zone and a groove in a whole new world. I might be delusional, but maybe I can pay my bills doing background work and party entertainment. It sure beats working in an office!
On another note, my dad had an overnight in Long Island and met me in Penn Station. We had a super tastey dinner at an Irish pub (pumpkin ale!) and then chatted over cups of tea for a nice long while. I love that I have cool parents. They let me go and fly with my ridiculous dreams. If I fall, they are there to help me up long as I need it. Plus they will always have a liquor cabinet stocked with some awesome whiskey and a wine fridge full of malbec. Love and kisses to both of you! :)

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Legit or Legit?

I woke up this morning still feeling like I had fought the Civil War and lost. Still, I grabbed my massive actress bag, got on the train with the suits, and went to experience my daily dose of professional rejection.
Yesterday had been super long, but everyone auditioning had been so nice. It also helps when it's something you've been looked at for before. Making it thru cuts is encouraging. Today was the singers call for the nonunion tour of Beauty and the Beast. Due to actually having a paid job tom during the dance call, I couldn't make the dance call. I figured it couldn't hurt to just go to the singers call. I don't really have a syrupy, poppy Disney voice, but why not?
It was a zoo. They were tons of wide eyed girls from far away thinking that would get cast on their first New York audition. News flash: all brunette girls have been told by their mothers that they would make a good Belle. (I was told by my father I would make a good tavern wench. But I'm a special case.) They looked so wide eyed and hopeful with their high school photos and improperly sized and unstapled resumes. They were blessed with a super sweet and super tiny monitor who kindly showed them where the paper cutter and stapler were.
Amongst this mess, I was number 237 after showing up a little after 9 for a 10 start. But then there was a two list problem, and 60 more people went in front of me.
They wanted 8 bars. Which is about the time it would take to go in the room, moon the auditors, and exit. Being hopefull it would go quickly, I stayed. I should gone and run errands. Or just drunk coffee to pretentiously jazzy selections of music at any of the five hundred nearby coffeeshops. (I like jazz, but it is whiskey drinking music. When will coffee be accompanies by the Clash or other such upbeat musicians? Rock that cappucino!)
So, I sang a little before 3. The protein bar diet was not working for me, and 8 bars was probably a good thing. I sang my standard uptempo quirky belt song. Big belt off your face fun.
The notice had said legitmate theatre, which can have two different conotations: non pop or head voice. Last time I was asked for legitimate musical theatre, I head voiced. "Well, we really just wanted to hear you belt." Ensue debacle with switching from singing very high to hardcore chesting everything. Amazingly, they still wanted to see me dance and then sing again afterwards, and I was able to redeem my belt. They hired Rockette height girls instead of 5'4" little me anyways, but I felt redeemed.
Today's legit was supposed to be head voice. Whoops. The girls in front of me floated on pretty little songs. I Ethel Mermaned that shit. (Apologies to my grandma for the swearing)
The auditor's faces were pretty funny. I am not sure if it was horror or just being awakened after so many hours of sweet Susie sopranos. Either way, they will remember me. Even if they never let me near Beauty and the Beast again. If I am going to make a mistake or fall on my rather large bottom, I would rather they be great big ones than little ones. Today was a big one.
I am not going to let it phase me. I will be up before dawn tom riding public transit with the construction workers (6am is the witching hour for manly workboots in the subway). Once I finally reach CT, I will put in a hard days work as a 60's background vampire, and thank God I don't work in an office. For as Sean Connery knows "you only live twice." Or so they say. :)

Monday, October 24, 2011

A Jersey Carol

I went to another Christmas Carol call. All ballet companies all do the nutcracker. Theatres are trying to come up with an equivalent. So you have the musical version of A Christmas Carol, White Christmas, the Grinch, A Christmas Story, and God know what else that can make money off the Christmas cheer.
This production is out in Princeton New Jersey. (The dance call was in the city. Thank God.) And they do the same production every year. They had a huge turn out, and no idea how to handle. They were very sweet, but it was a really long call. I was there from 9 to 7. Yeah. They kept me the entire time. Literally the entire time. I was the last person to sing. Going out with a bang!
How I feel after such a long day? See this clip. My hair was actually similar to hers today. :)
I came home to a fun little gift. I got a little check from my Pan Am fitting. It's not a lot, but right now, any check is welcome. I get a huge amount of satisfaction from my acting checks. Getting paid!

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Tarts and Widows or My Continuing and Bizzare Relationship with "Big River"

I love open calls on Sundays. They are generally not that busy. And they are always entertaining. Today I went out for a non-union production of Big River.
The show performs in Feb at a theatre in Westchester. This theatre, brags about doing the most union shows of any theatre in New York. So, once or twice a year, they do a non-union show through another company. That way they can say they are purely equity. So, while "some pay" is always frightening to see on an audition notice, it is always much more comforting when it could lead to shows with Equity contracts. I wasn't doing anything else today, so of course I went!
Years ago, I did a production of "Big River." It was the least time I did a show at a community theatre. I had done shows there before, but I had been accustomed to dance captaining for them and getting paid. So when I got a desperate call from one of the directors, searching for one more young female that wouldn't be completely intolerable for their production of the show, I said yes. I wasn't doing anything else. (Which is apparently how all my stories about this show go.)
I had fun. I was the alto sister and then had a grand old time playing some crazy character roles in the chorus. My personal favorite, was the awkward, unintelligent tart from Arkansas. So much fun to play! And definitely not getting me any dates. Despite the high kicks. :)
So auditioning today, I figured I was good for the chorus. Woo! I like being in choruses. It's fun. A job is a job after all.
They started with the first few groups singing, reading, and dancing. There were only 70 something of us, but they only had the studio for four hours. So they couldn't keep taking as much time as they had been. I was 64, and they were running out of time. So they typed us in groups and sang us as quickly as possible. I was not in the Mary Jane group. I was not surprised. But I was in the widow Douglas group. Which was surprising. And they had me read after I sang a comedically bawdy little ditty. Apparently, they are playing the widow young. I would be a little bit more of a young, gold digging widow. Less churchey. Especially after the song that I sang.
I wouldn't mind doing the show again. While it is a little slow, the characters are super fun to play. Mark Twain wrote some crazies. I am a good crazy. And it would be a job!
The world is a weird place in a wonderful sort of way. Another entertaining Sunday! :)

Friday, October 21, 2011


I am working again this Wed. Hurrah! Finally have a date and travel plans from the Vampire film. And once again, it's time to catch the 5am Wed train out of South Orange. Woo. Can you tell you who excited I am?
My sleep is all kinds of off from this Wed, so I need to try extra hard to get it back on track for next Wed. As in, lots of early bed times. No more sleeping in on audition free days. And be up and there really early for the Beauty and the Beast call on Tues. :)
Not so long ago, I was a college student who very rarely got up before 9 am. Now I am up before the sun to job hunt on a regular basis. The roomie, who still keeps college-esque hours, stays up til about 2 in the morning on a regular basis and gets up around 9 or ten. Her days don't technically start until 1 in the afternoon. We are have very few hours where we are both at home and awake. Quite often, it feels like I live alone. Which is really weird.
I spend a ton of time trying to get jobs. Very few will pan out. Which really isn't all that different from anyone job hunting. Sometimes I wish I was one of the lucky chosen few with parents who got them a nice, cushy job. But at the same time, each job I have worked, whether in Houston, Tulsa, New York, New Jersey, or Conneticut, is one that I have gotten myself. I went after it. I sold myself. I was successful on my own. Which is an awesome feeling.
Yes. I did not get the most practical college degree, but it is something that I love that I can be successful in. The work I do is for myself. What I earn, I have earned by myself. I can and will stand on my own. Boo yah! Take that world!
And just because it's awesome... Kate Winslet on "Extras "

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Pan Am And Organized Meandering

The Pan Am shoot I was booked was today. I found out at 930 last night where my call time and place were. 630 AM in BROOKLYN. (My face upon this news)
I packed my bag, set my alarm for 430 AM, took a shower, and went to bed. It still hurt to get up that early. I caught the 507 train which was both late and slow. I messed up and took the express A instead of the C and had turn around and go three stops back towards Manhattan. And I was about five or ten minutes late and panicking. In the dark. In the subway. In Brooklyn. Yeah.
Turned out I wasn't the last one there and had to wait in a huge line for my voucher. There was no prompt check in or roll call, so hopefully my suck-y use of public transit didn't hurt my possibility of future jobs with them. Traded my voucher for my costume-the famous sexy plaid pants!- got dressed and headed to hair and makeup. Luckily, a hairdresser with little curlers nabbed me out of the line. Her name was Elaina, and my little hair was just what she wanted. So I didn't have to wait in line as much. Got my makeup and the hair finished. I was still among the end of the lines, so I wasn't involved in the shots from the first angle.
Didn't bother me too much. There was coffee, and they were still paying me the same, even if I was taking goofy pictures of my hair in the holding room. Score!
It was a massive operation. More than a hundred of us went thru hair, makeup, and wardrobe in a little over three hours. And there was some intense hair on the ladies! My Peggy Olsen flip was eclipsed by some truly stupendous beehives. But those girls didn't have plaid pants! It's time for the turn around, so up to the set I go. (I had a hard time getting a good picture on my tablet. Forgive the awkward face and instead concentrate on the plaid pants and loafers. They are even more awkward in the best way possible!)

We were shooting  at 1 Hanson Place. It's a beautiful old bank building that largely gets used for shooting bus and train station scenes in and around NYC. Penn and Grand Central stop for no film crew! The architecture of the building is a fabulous hodgepodge. When bored, the building gave you plenty to look at.  I started off in line for tickets. Then I was coupled with Wayne. We came in from the back and bought tickets multiple times as we planned our elopement to niagra falls, wandered around, and checked out the maps. Which were purple. And of Michigan. I should have nabbed one as I was leaving. Then I was pulled by one of the crowd control people to be a part of another couple. If any of the takes make the cut, I am the crazy one behind the really pretty black lead actor (I think the character 's name was Joe) as he buys his ticket to Mississippi. My partner in this couple was a guy named Chris. He's 23 and from Houston. Small world. He was also wearing a paisley button up and mustard sweater combo that was almost as stylin' as my pants and loafers. :-)  More crowd meandering after that. One last shot meandering with Chris, and it was time to wrap. We were done at 330. It was painless and just the right amount of time. Checked everything back in, got my voucher, and headed back home. With my 60s hair. Trying to brush it out would just make it Ka-razy, so I decided to just work the hair. All in all, not a bad days work. I had a good time. I got paid to have my hair and makeup done and then walk back and forth. Sweet! :-) 

Sunday, October 16, 2011


This past summer I did one last show in Houston, Jesus Christ Superstar with a new company in Houston. It was their second show, and they had a lot to learn. Not my best experience in theatre. Nor my most professional.
I blocked it from my mind until the saga of my paycheck began. They were to wait three weeks to pay us. I got my check six weeks later. My email of inquiry about the yet to appear check at five weks was never answered. As soon as I got it, I sent it right back to my military brat bank. I found out today that it bounced and I was charged fees.
I wasn't the only one to have my check bounce. I prepared my email with help from legal aid's website and sent it off. I kept it professional and to the point.
I had hoped I would never have to deal with bounced checks. Actors have notice boards all across the web about the dreaded bounced check. It's an extra slap after being paid poorly for good work to have a check bounce.
Now I have a template email for any future bounced checks. We are all take jobs just to be working at times, whether we are actors, tax accountants, or delivery guys. But there is a certain amount of respect we all deserve that we won't always get. It's a delicate balance between our pride and our survival. So as much as I would like to be able to work for peanuts and still live reasonably well, I know I can't. If I sign a contract, I stick to it. And an employer should do the same. If you can't do it, don't include it in the contract you wrote.
I might be small and cute, but I am learning more and more to stand up for myself. I am not a carpet to be walked on by anyone. If I don't respect and look out for myself, who else will? R-E-S-P-E-C-T!

Friday, October 14, 2011

Plaid Cigarette Pants Are SEXY!!!!!

So I had my fitting for Pan Am today. It was out at the Steiner Studios in Brooklyn, and getting there was an adventure!
We've had days of rain and steaming haze. (Much too hot and much too humid for October!) Often when there is lots of rain, you get power outages. When you get power outages in the right spots, electric trains don't run.
That's what happened this morning.
They re routed us to Hoboken to take the PATH trains. Which I've never taken. I had two options-33rd St bound train which I knew was right next to Penn or the World Trade Center bound train. Ok.
I knew exactly where I would be getting off the 33rd St train, but not only was it round about, it was also comedically full. In addition to the abundance of suits spilling over, there was also an abundance of comic Con-esque dressed young men. Not who I wanted to be squashed in with.
So I took the other train. It ended up being the shorter and less crowded way. I didn't get lost, and I was there 25 minutes early! Boo yah New Jersey Transit! I was taking care of business.
My fitting went well. I din't have much in my own closet that fit what they were looking for, so I am only wearing my litle black cardi and gold button earrings. From their awesome stock of clothes, I am wearing a white sleeveless turtleneckish sweater, brown flats, brown purse, and the peice de resistance-navy blue and yellow plaid, wool, high waisted, cigarette pants. I was a little bit worried at first, but the pants grew on me. They're really awesome in a crazy 60's sort of way. I can't wait to wear them again!
There are twenty odd shows filming in New York right now. Which is a whole lot compared to the recent past. Walking to the rooms for Pan Am, I passed the stages, work rooms, offices, and cast rooms for Boardwalk Empire and Damages. I felt like such a sad litle fan girl, in awe of so much awesomeness. Boardwalk Empire.....sigh.
I then met my mom's bud Patty and her daughter for lunch in Manhattan. Small world, their other lunch guest was a girl I had danced with in high school. Crazy!
I left with a big "care package" from my mom. Lots of coffee and other important goodies (halloween candy!) were in the bag. I treked it all back home before the constant haze of the past few days became rain again. The roomie is making cheesecake spice cupcakes and watching Bones obsessively. I am quite content. Happy fall to all! :)

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Prather, Chezzam, and Pan Am: A Most Eventful Day!

Prather went really well. They called back more singers than dancers, so I felt like a shark! The combo was fun. I partied it out, and they asked me to come back at 530 for 9 to 5. I had no earthly idea what they would want me to do, but I had time to kill. I called one of my college girlfriends Stacey, and we met up to get lunch.
She wanted Thai coffee. We had no earthly idea where a Thai place would be, but we were in New York. One of the wonderful things about NYC is if you walk half dozen blocks, you can usually find what you were hankering for. And we did!
We ate at this little Thai place on the corner of 23rd and 7th Ave. It was super tastey and decently priced. We had an awesome time stuffing our faces and chatting. Panang curry! My kryptonite! YUM! Then I headed back to Prather.
They had us read several sides with the guys. It went all right. I feel like I have a decent chance of getting an ensemble job with them. Lord only knows when I will hear from them. They were looking for spring shows and had over five hundred auditionees. And they danced about three hundred of them. We shall see!
I got several awesome emails today. One was from the event company I auditioned for the other day. (Chezzam-where you get paid to dance with Granny at bar mitzvahs!) I'm on their roster and possibly have a gig on Nov 6.
The other email was AWESOME! I have kept submitting myself to be an extra on Pan Am. I finally booked it! I'm a bus station passenger. Fittings are Fri. The shoot is Tues. I am so excited!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! (I read the email on my train home and totally Singing in the Rained several lamp posts walking home. And it's not raining anymore.)
Hopefully I can keep getting extra and corporate work. Much better than waiting tables. (Which I can't get. College degrees do not matter when trying to get a waitressing job!)
PAN AM!!!!!!!!!! I am so excited! I am going to be a part of the cheese!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! :)

Tuesday, October 11, 2011


Cattle call auditions have a tendency to occur on Mondays. I don't know why. For the non theatrical, cattle calls may seem like one of the more inhumane bits of the industry. Theatres host these open calls for multiple shows with a huge lack of specifications. So most everybody comes. Male, female, fat, skinny, short, tall, or green. You name it, there is probably someone there like it. Hundreds of people crammed into a holding room waiting for their thirty seconds of glory.
There were two open cattle calls yesterday- Cohoes Music Hall in Rochester (It's A Wonderful Life and Pirates) and Prather Entertainment who run a dinner theatre circuit (an insane variety of shows). There was no way you could sell yourself for their entire call in 16 bars without looking like a psychopath. So you sing something that shows both your strong suits and your personality. Sell yourself- artist are prostitutes or whatever some famous schmuck said.
I wanted to make both calls. The more I audition, the better I will get and the easier it will be. (hahaha) Luckily, both were on the same floor in the same studio.
I didn't get up as early as planned (the warmish weather and my lack of AC weren't helping me sleep), so I got there at 10 when both calls were supposed to begin. At Cohoes, I was number 195. At Prather, I was 284. Hahaha. Don't you love Mondays?
I stuck around. Hopped from room to room. Made new friends. And recurled the right side of my hair every few hours. It had decided it was anti curly, and I was determined to get it to match the perfect pin curls on the other side of my head. The heels and dress came on about 1, and I settled down to wait for the post lunch calls for Cohoes and made some awesome new holding room friends.
We were the audition clothes police. It is amazing to me, that in such an image conscious industry, how horribly and inappropriately people can dress. Simple things, like flattering your silhouette or your coloring, just don't always happen. Don't dress like a hooker for It's a Wonderful Life and Pirates. Last time I checked, neither of these classic, you-should-really-know-it show involved prostitutes. So don't wear something that would have place in a Sweet Charity audition! I also learned all about where there are Targets in the city (New York City is never referred to by name. It is just "the city".) I live in Jersey. Not a problem I have. And how to use food stamps. Also, not a problem I have. (Fingers crossed).
Anyways, the laughter and fun with my new pals lead me to be super loose in the room. I didn't really feel like I fit what they wanted (except for the loud bit. They don't mike. They asked for loud, and I can be loud. Just ask my mother.), but I went in and had a blast. Against the wall (it was a small studio. Standing three feet further back did not tell them how loud I could or couldn't be), belting my face off, and having a good time. I consider that a success!
Back across the hall to Prather to wait another 2 hours. Once again, new holding room friends. They were less chill (nervous more than anything), but still quite nice. I didn't rock it out as much as I had next door, but I got a dance callback for Wed. Once again, I will call that a success.
Cattle calls are pretty much an exercise in futility. They saw over 500 people in 2 days at both auditions. We have maybe 30 seconds to intrigue several tired, and usually gay, men who have been sitting behind a table in a small studio for hours. I am amazed by how friendly so many if these people can be after watching the human cow-valcade all day. But still, I feel worse not booking a job I was on a select list for. Not booking something or not even getting a callback at a cattle call is no biggie. As long as I am friendly and personable, I could be on the short list next time they roll around. Plus, you didn't know if you fit what they were looking for. The harsh reality of it is that I will have to deal with these calls for a long while. I just have to stay positive and keep giving it my all. Most of all, I have to have fun doing these crazy things. I always have to enjoy my 16 bar moo that I have waited 6 hours to give.
MOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!!!! :-)

Sunday, October 9, 2011

Sometimes It Pays to be Pale...

Several auditions have come and gone. They weren't anything exciting. I went to bed early and didn't write anything.
Saturday, I met Stacey in Colombus Circle. We walked around Central Park. It was a beautiful day. Plus the beauty of buff men shirtlessly jogging by. It seemed like at least half the dogs in Manhattan were being walked. (We both want a dog and know we can neither afford or even always take care of one. So we gaze longingly after other people's dogs. We also gaze longingly at attractive and possibly wealthy men.)
We treked to the Lincoln Center. Ate cupcakes for lunch. Saw a fellow TU alum's show at the Ensemble. It was not only quite solid, but it was also funny. Which is awesome. More coffee, and I headed back home.
It had been a very good day. It needed nothing else to make it better. But something else did come along!
Among the five thousand projects I seem to submit myself for, there was a casting call for extras for a short horror film. Vampire bar patrons in the 1960s. I admit to being a little confused by this, but they paid, so I submitted myself. Guess who's on the director's short list? Moi! Hopefully if all works out, I will be paid to sit at a bar in CT looking pale. Baby steps. It's a good start and I am super excited! I haven't had a paycheck in a while. It will be nice to see even a tiny one! Sometimes, it pays to be pale. :)

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Hello Courtney!

"Oh what a beautiful morning! Oh what a beautiful day!" But it didn't really start out that way.
I hadn't done everything I meant to last night (cupcake baking and wine drinking led me to my bed super early), so I caught a later train than I normally catch. I was just carrying my contacts instead of wearing them. In the juggling act between contacts, glasses, and hot coffee, I lost a lense. I couldn't find it. Anywhere. So I started digging thru my bags. I should have a spare pair somewhere...but I didn't. Trying not to panic, I got up early when we were nearing Penn, surriptiously looking for lenses for little blind girls around my seat and there it was. In the middle of aisle. Miraculously, it was still intact and wearable. Thank the lord!
Off to Pearl Studios for "HelloDolly." I love thisshow. Its cheesey and hokey and soooo wonderful. Plus it always leaves you humming. Jerry Herman makes me so happy! I was an hour early, and number 73 on the list. Woo!
Somehow, I almost always end up being called in the first set in my audition group. Today was no different. The combo was to "Dancing," and it was fun! Balletic but enough movement bounce that my curls (you bet I curled my hair!). I looked like an excited foofoo dog. Which is awesome.
And they asked me to sing!!!!!!!!! It wasmyfirst time to get asked to sing in New York and I was super giddy. I sang "Heather on the Hill." They wanted quirkey, but I didn't have anything in the style of the show that was quirkey. I was still giddy and bounced about a bit as I sang. I probably looked half witted, but in a cute sort of way. Don't expect to book it but it is still a success in my world. Baby steps! "1, 2, 3. 1, 2, 3. Look! I'm dancing!" :-)
P.S. For Katie and Lisa. Michael Crawford: PIMP! (We stayed up late watching "Hello Dolly" too many times. Silliness ensued and we all have shirts with this slogan and his confused face upon them!)

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Costume (Stripper) Party!

Every so often, Broadway shows have to do chorus calls. With the way that Equity works, they don't have to hire. They just have to have them. It is the same with regional theatres.
These can be handled two ways. We don't want to waster your time- non union members go home. Quickly see the union members. Most of them won't even show up if the word is out. Or, what happened today, "Hey bitches! (Excuse my not so French.) Come party with us!"
Rock of Ages had their required dance call this morning, and that's what they did. They saw everybody dance. They heard no one sing, and they will not hire anyone. But they invited us to party. And we did.
It was a new level of trashy audition dress. And it was tons of fun.
Class is not something to be found in Rock of Ages. You have Poison, some White Snake, crude jokes, and hot girls. It's oddly straight and dudely for a musical. Everybody skanked it out. (I miscalculated the skank level and looked more Blitz Club than White Snake. If only Rosie hadn't killed Taboo!) My favorite slut-tacular peice of clothing in the room-black fishnet thigh highs with hot pink lace tops. There was a costume (stripper) store by my apartment in Tulsa. They were going out of business, so I went to go get cheap stockings. (Back seams and fishnets are super expensive.) Rummaging thru their bins of clearance, I never saw anything that awesomely trashy. Maybe Tulsa strippers just were not so inventive.
It was a party. They weren't really hiring, so it was like free class. (albeit, free class in all sorts of trashy clothes.) We all just had a good time. Which rocks.
The combo was fun. We were told to be "the hottest girl in the room." That odd sort of female empowerment thru sexuality sort of a thing. It was like being an 80's hair metal music video. I totally skinned my knees to peices going down to my knees out of a piroutte. Floor work in dance fishnets. Ow. Next time I will bring knee pads.
Ok. It wasn't very classy. Or tasteful. Or erudite. In fact, it was pretty trashy and not tasteful at all. But it was fun!

Monday, October 3, 2011

Paws and Passion Paw-t Deux!

Hahahaha. I went back to another CATS call ready to be entertained. And I was! :-)
My first audition in New York was actually for this same tour. I was scared beyond belief. There were hundreds of girls. Some of them looked crazy but others looked really intimidating. There was a girl in a tie-dyed unitard. What had I gotten myself into?
I was in the first group because I'd been there before 7 (am. Gross.). The director/choreographer and his assistant were teaching the combo. Two tall, thin, super gay men in black tees and v necks. (They were both supernice though. And that makes them being unknowingly funny even better!)We got a huge lecture as they taught the combo about how our fingers must disappear. They must become paws! As we started dancing it, he asked for our "passion." "Paws and passion. Remember, this is CATS!" (I'm convinced that whenever you refer to this show, it must be un all caps with an exclamation point.) So of course paws and passion became my favorite new saying. And the cat paw gesture must always come with it!
I wasn't asked to stay, but I had a fresh confidence in myself. I could dance as well (if not better) than most of the girls in the room. I could do this for a living. New York wasn't all that scary. It's just a city full of paws and passion!
So, when I saw a fresh call for replacements, I was psyched. I don't expect to ever get a job in the show that never dies. I'm simply too average in height. They use short and tall. I'm firmly in the middle. Plus I always manage to look too weighted when I dance it. I don't fit it, but the auditions are so much fun!I was still loose from the crazy afternoon audition yesterday. (It was awesome. No one had any idea what was going on, so we just had fun. There were maybe a dozen of us, and we were all clueless. I spent two hours with these auditors, and I still don't know what I was auditio ning for! None of us did.)
In the CATS holding room, I ran into a girl I knew from church back in Houston. It was her first pro audition in the city. She's going to school at Fordam. I also met a girl named Rachel that looked like Rachel McAdams. She was super sweet, and I hope to see her again around the audition circuit! Then it was time to dance. My paws were ready! It was the director/choreographer again! No v neck and no assistant, but were Latin lady cats this time. When he started to talk about the importance of paws, I almost chuckled aloud. There was no talk of passion, but there was talk of animality and flair. Hahahaha!
I rocked it, had fun, and didn't get asked to sing. Holding room rumours were that they only needed one girl. They had over a hundred to pick from! Oh well. I was royally entertained and got a free dance class. Who needs cable TV when there are CATS auditions? Paws and passion y'all!

Sunday, October 2, 2011

I'm Sitting in Starbucks Right Now :-)

In some ways, shows like "So You Think Dance?" a great for dance. It's exposure for both dancers and choreographers to a huge audience. But it's also become a bit of monster. Styles got smooshed over and turned into a SYTYCD?/dance team mush. Different styles should be danced differently. You should try and fit both the choreographer and the character. I firmly believe this as both a chroeographer and dancer, and this smooshing of styles into one boring clumo is not cool.
I auditioned for a theatre in New Hampshire bright and early this morning. We were Hotboxing it up long before actual Hotbox girls would actually be up. Everyone from the theatre was super nice. The director/choreographer taught a combo to "Bushel and a Peck."
He kept telling us showgirls, but it was very "So You Think You Can Dance?"esque. If there is one thing in my being, my teeny 5 foot 4 self is a showgirl at heart. A tall, leggy lady that would totally rock Vegas. So here was the question, SYTYCD it, or keep it showgirl and period.
I'm anal retentive. I went period and had a grand old time. They kept dance team. It makes me wonder if I should change what I am doing, but at the same time, I have something those girls don't have. And when it comes down to it, I am selling myself. I might fit someone else's production of "Guys and Dolls." I know who I am, and SYTYCD and dance team is not my fit. (Though I could totally choreograph it.) But I can rock some Jack Cole and Micheal Kidd. So, for now, I'm going to keep refining me and trying to find that core that will appeal to someone. (Puppet people liked me? Some theatre people will find me soon enough if I just keep auditioning.)
I'm totally killing time in a Starbucks uptown of Times Square waiting for the next audition. This has become my audition diary of sorts. While it is awesome to share with my friends and family, writing it out helps me find peace with things. I'm weird but awesome! Time to rock it out! :)

Saturday, October 1, 2011

Ninja Puppeteers

At Kids On Stage, we would have Puppet Pizzaz Fridays. Mr. Greg, or as most of the teaching staff fondly called him "the creepy puppet man," would come and put on a puppet show. He was a bald white man. He drove a large, unmarked, white van. Made funny voices. And carried trunks that could totally carry children. We had tons of fun listing the ways he was a child predator. It made Fridays awesome! (Plus we got Chinese takeout from down the street for lunch. Score!)
So, I'm not a huge fan of puppets. While I admit they take skill to work, they creep me out. Except for Muppets. Muppets are cool. I don't know why, but they do.
This morning, I had an audition for a puppet troupe. They do puppet ballets to classical music with narration. Recorded tracks, puppets, and dancers. Well, work is work, so when I heard from this company I went.
I get off to meet Edward (our contact and auditor) in the Bronx. I am not happy to be looking for a fifteen passenger van. It brings thoughts of Mr. Greg back. Mr. Greg was not who I wanted to work for. Plus, it just in general creepy. And makes me glad I have mace. Edward gets there, and he is a bald, white guy, along the lines of Mr. Greg. And he refers to us as ninja puppeteers. I got up at 6:30 this morning and traveled over an hour to get here. Shoot.
The audition was a small group of green dancers. I did not feel the greenest person there even though it was very different from what I was used to. We danced a little bit and played with puppets. Edward turned out to be much less crazy than Greg (thank God), and offered me the possibility of work in Feb. As of now, he is going to call me back in to sing in January. If I don't have a theatre gig and he offers it to me, I'll take it. I would be the only non puppet in a dinosaur vaudeville. Sort of a narrator or placard girl. Who gets to sing a cheesy song at the end of the show. We'll see. It's better than nothing. While I don't like not having a concrete offer, at the same time, it leaves free to accept a musical theatre job if one rolls along. Which would be awesome! High hopes and more auditions to come! :) Tom: Guys and Dolls and Rock and Roll at the Palace plus a "cabaret style musical." (Whatever that means)

Thursday, September 29, 2011

Pan Am and Pumpkin Cookies

ABC gave Christina Ricci my hair cut and color in Pan Am. If only our eyes were the same color. Then I could totally play her younger sister! (And I would actually be taller than her!)

I keep submitting myself to do background work on the show, and they don't ever use me. I've decided it's not because of my total lack of film experience (a 24 hour student film, a bad film class I dropped senior year, and two workshops), it's just I look too much like Christina! (Pipe dream!)
The pilot for the show was ludicrous, but so much fun! Not Mad Men-esque at all. Super cheesey. It was more like something actually made in the 60's. Which is cool.
I made super awesome pumpkin cookies today. My roomie totally sent me a link to tons of pumpkin recipes whike she was at work. Was she trying to kick the German baker genes into overdrive? I don't really mind that much.....cause they are sooooo good! Here is the recipe and a pic of mine. I spiced them up a wee bit more and added vanilla to the frosting. Plus I used hot frosting to get that fun texture!