Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Being Crazy

Do you ever have those times when you're talking with a friend and you're just going absolutely insane for no reason? And because you're crazy, your friend is picking up on your residual crazy, making them act just as weird, and it becomes a cycle that can't stop?

I think Rachel W. and I found our crazy cycle.

Tonight we Skyped for about two hours, and in that time she taught me how to become a turtle, we discovered that our stuffed animals had been secretly learning strange accents on youtube together for years, I scared her to death with my angry face and she laughed until her sides hurt, we had SqueakCon without Jesse, swapped stage kiss stories, and I vowed to make her a personal greeting dance in the same way she does hers.

At this point, it doesn't even matter if anyone else understands anything that I just wrote, I just wanted to write this down for posterity. And because Rachel is incredible and I love her.

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HPRT: I showed Rachel my Lego Snape and Dobby keychains. They're adorable.
Current Book: The Heidi Chronicles by Wendy Wasserstein
Current Song: Red and Black from Les Miserables

Saturday, April 7, 2012

Downton Abbey

Have you ever watched a show that has captured your attention immediately and has held you captive for so long that you form an irrational obsession with it?

Sound normal? Good, me too.

Right now I'm doing a re-watch of Downton Abbey and it's quite ridiculous how much I love these characters. I can't pretend that I don't feel that way about other shows I watch, such as Sherlock and Fringe and Castle (because, let's face it, I have unhealthy obsessions with those shows too) but right now the flavor of the moment is Downton Abbey. I think it's partially because I am in an Advanced Costume Construction class and I'm thinking about my final project and the costumes on that show are just so effing beautiful and way too ornate to be real, but I'm just eating this show up! Seriously, if you haven't watched that show, please please please do. You don't know what you're missing.

Sorry that I've been failing BEDA. It's Easter weekend and I have so much homework and memorizing to do that I almost don't think I'll survive this week. We'll see what happens. Perhaps I'll have a fun story or two for tomorrow's post, if I remember to write at all.

HPRT: If you aren't sure if you're sold on watching Downton Abbey, I can tell you that Maggie Smith (McGonagall) plays literally the most hilarious character on that show. Her one-liners are priceless.
Current Book: Mackers still
Current Song: Downton Abbey theme

Thursday, April 5, 2012

BEDA Day 5: This. Just this.


You're welcome.

HPRT: Sometimes I feel like finding a good Game of Thrones link is like trying to catch the snitch in the middle of a tornado.
Current Book: Macbeth
Current Song: Game of Thrones Theme

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Early fail. But... SHAKESPEARE

This may be the earliest I've ever failed BEDA or VEDA in my two years of participating, but honestly, yesterday was one of the most hectic days I've had in a while. This whole week, really, has been nothing but a blur of hours rehearsing and memorizing Shakespeare. And if sacrificing BEDA is a result of getting really good work done and feeling confident in my scenes for class, then so be it.

But I'm back today, with far less homework and actual time to write about some things that have happened over the course of the last few months! I suppose I should start with Cabaret, shouldn't I?

I originally wasn't cast in Cabaret. When the cast list went up in December, my name wasn't on it, and I was a little hurt but ultimately in my head it made sense, seeing as who they did cast really deserved the parts. So I'd already made plans on how to spend my semester and was starting to get really excited about them, when the night before school started I was out to dinner with some friends and I got a text from the director saying that some people had dropped and he was wondering if I was interested in stepping in to the role of Kit Kat Swing/Dance Captain/Ensemble. I don't think I've ever laughed at myself so hard in my life. The concept of me being dance captain of anything was so absurd that I had myself convinced when I went into my meeting with him the next day that I was playing the role of Dance Captain in the show. No such role exists, and he actually did want me to be the dance captain of our production. Needless to say I did a lot of hard work that took up a lot of time. I knew all the Kit Kat girls' parts by opening, and had even stood in for one of them all during 10-out-of-12. Even though I never got to perform as a Kit Kat girl, I came away from that experience knowing that I could do pretty much anything I wanted on stage. I had achieved one of my acting goals, and that was to be sexy, something I had never previously thought myself capable of. While I am by no means the best at it, it's still a starting point that I can look back on and be proud of. 

All while that was going on, I was working furiously on my spring semester of junior year, which for BFA means Shakespeare. Literally the entire semester in both sections of BFA is dedicated to Shakespeare at this point in the program. I found myself completely thrown head-first into something I knew I was going to love, but I don't think I was anticipating just how frustrating, and in turn rewarding, this process has been.

The play we started with was the comedy, Measure for Measure, which I'd never heard of before, and honestly I feel it's one of those in-between shows in terms of genre. Technically it's a comedy since it ends with a wedding and all the obstacles have been overcome, but so much of what happens leading up to the end is highly dramatic that it makes it difficult to see the comedy in it. But I soon came to love the show, it's story and the characters. I played Isabella in both my scenes, and if you're familiar with the story at all, you'll know that it wasn't too difficult for me to slip into that role. While I'm certainly no nun, my lifestyle choices are pretty similar to Isabella's, so I was excited to play with a role that I might actually be cast as now.

Next was Richard II, another show that isn't as well known. I've always remained rather uninterested in Shakespeare's histories, since for a long time history as a whole struck me as rather uninteresting, but I've come to realize lately that there are certain periods that really interest me. Basically the whole of British history appeals to me, which is why I feel Shakespeare's plays about it have grown on me. Richard II was no exception. Part of what made it so much fun is that I got to play Richard in a scene. It's been played by a woman before*, and I just found it to be an amazing experiment in character exploration. I've played a few guys before, but always when I was younger. I've never had to think like a grown man, let alone a dethroned king, and found that I really took to the role.

Now we're doing The Scottish Play (if you don't know which that is, just google it), and I'm playing Lady MacB in both my scenes. We're not done with these scenes yet, we only just had our second showings of them today, but so far I'm simply mesmerized by the complexity of these characters. Not only are the characters so deep and in some ways contradictory, but the language itself is by far the most difficult thing I've ever had to memorize, and the most interesting. Lady MacB just holds so much power, and it's an amount of power that I don't think I've ever held before, in any friendship or relationship with another person. It's almost terrifying in its scope, but I'm really relishing discovering just how far it can go. I think I would love to do this role when I'm actually old enough to play her. It would be so fantastic.

Seeing as I have totally different Shakespearean monologue to score right now (Paulina from A Winter's Tale), I really should get off. I hope this didn't get too theatre nerdy for you all, but seeing as that's the life I'm leading and plan on leading, this shouldn't come as a big surprise.

I hope you all had wonderful Wednesdays (ah, alliteration), and I'll hopefully see you tomorrow!

HPRT:* It was actually Fiona Shaw, who played Aunt Petunia in Harry Potter, who played Richard II in a film production in 1997.
Current Book: Honestly? Still Macbeth.
Current Song: Somebody That I Used to Know (Glee version with Darren Criss and Matt Bomer)

Monday, April 2, 2012

BEDA Day 2

I just realized you guys. This is my 100th post! I wish I had something a lot more interesting to commemorate 100 posts of my most likely boring life, but sadly I just have a run-down of what happened today. Perhaps some of my later posts will be more interesting.

While I wait for my current episode of Game of Thrones to load, I guess I'll take these last 40 minutes to blog for BEDA!

Today was rather stressful, in that I actually went to class this morning, on time at 8am, and then had to leave before it was over to go to a performance. The musical theatre department was invited to perform at a monthly meeting for an organization at the university called OLLI, which is a program for older citizens in my town to audit classes at the college, and get involved in a number of ways in the academic life here. So we put together a program and took it over to one of the hotels on College Street, and while it wasn't difficult to perform, logistically it was just a bit stressful, since I had to work around my classes and totally skip my Geography class (not that I'm complaining, I utterly abhor that class anyway). The only good things about this morning were the fact that I finally, FINALLY am finished with my corset! I'm sure pictures will come soon, but right now it's sitting safely in my box at school. I haven't tried it on yet, fully laced and everything, but I'm sure it will look great! It seems to fit me perfectly. And secondly, I had a really good voice lesson after the performance. (For those of you wondering what I sang, it was "I Could Have Danced All Night" from My Fair Lady.)

BFA was fine, but production studio was actually really cool because my professor taught me the basics of operating the light board! Today they were focusing the lights for Sylvia in class, so instead of just having to stand on a ladder to balance it out, I got to be out in the house pressing buttons and turning the lights on and off. You would think that that would be totally boring, but since they were setting multiple beams of lights, it was actually a little confusing at times and I had to keep straight what lights were done on each line set. I rather enjoyed it, though. I've lately come to realize that I really enjoy lights. Maybe I should explore that some next year if I have the time.

I'm pretty exhausted, and I totally copped out on my video today, which I feel really bad about since I took the time to write this, but trying to film, edit, and upload a video takes so much longer than writing out a blog post. Especially since the internet at my apartment is just unbearably slow at uploading anything to YouTube. So alas, this post will really just have to do for today.

Hope your Mondays were fulfilling!

HPRT: I could really use the Langlock spell that Snape made up. My roommate is being awfully loud in the living room and it's 11:30. Manners!
Current Book: Still Macbeth. It really won't change until after we're done with these scenes.
Current Song: Any Way You Want It by Journey

Sunday, April 1, 2012

BEDA three years in a row?

Nope. I won't do it. You can't make me.


Aw what the hell, why not?
Today I memorized Shakespeare and had dinner with my parents. Since I don't have a ton coming right away this month I may go back and cover topics from the last few months that I obviously didn't write about. But there's plenty of topics to cover. Sorry today's post sucks. I literally decided 3 minutes ago I was doing this. After all, it's not like I don't have a million things to worry about this month.

(The ^ statement is a lie, I have so much to do this month, but when has that ever stopped me before?)
(The answer is never.)

I hope all your April Fools' Days went well. How I wish I had spent my evening watching the season premiere of Game of Thrones, but sadly I do not have HBO. Maybe one night this week. Hopefully.

HPRT: The woman who plays Catelyn Stark on GoT is Hermione's mother in the 7th Harry Potter film. She is absolutely fantastic. Also, David Bradley and Natalia Tena (Filch and Tonks respectively) are on that show.
Current Book: Does Macbeth count?
Current Song: The Les Miserables soundtrack.

Monday, March 12, 2012

Gennie 1998-2012

There are moments in life that mark the end of something really huge, something major, and remind you that no matter how young you think you should still be, time marches on whether or not you're ready for it to. I've been having a lot of those moments lately, that kind of started with turning 20 and entering the BFA program, having my first professional auditions and moving out of my parents house. But nothing is hitting me as hard, or breaking my heart as much, as my dog.

My dog Gennie has been with me and my parents since I was 6 years old when my aunt's dog Windy had puppies. Gennie was the second of the litter, and was the definite ring-leader of her brothers and sisters. Always the most spirited, my cousin, who was about the same age as me, named her Star for the white patch on her forehead that resembled a star. When my aunt asked us if we wanted a puppy (free of charge, for a pure-bred golden retriever, almost unheard of!), we went over to her house and chose Gennie. I remember very vividly holding her in my lap at 6 years old when she had probably only been alive for a few days. Her eyes were still shut and she could fit in my tiny hands like she belonged there.

Ever since then she's been an integral part of my family. Through her rambunctious stages where she'd chew up my mom's slippers and rip my shirt when jumping up and down on me, to throwing the ball down the green belt we lived next to, to her accidentally licking a wall socket and getting electrocuted and running into our glass door, through the years and years of steroid pills we gave her for her allergies and the time she ran across four-lane traffic and we thought she was going to die. But mostly I just remember taking her on camping trips and cuddling next to her in the tent, how she'd always come right up to me and put her head on my lap when I was crying, her chasing her own tail and never getting tired of it, how she'd just endure my dumb cat swatting at her nose when she wasn't doing anything to him, her getting in our faces whenever we had food demanding that she get some too, how her ears would perk up when she heard a word she understood, her enormous bellow of a bark whenever someone walked in the door, how she always took up far too much room in the back seat with me on car trips, and even though I complained vociferously, I was just glad she was coming with us.

This is my dog. Her full name is Gianetta della Casa Querchia Bella. Jennifer of the House of Beautiful Oaks. Gennie is what we call her, after my mom's childhood dog of the same name (the short, regular name, not the Italian one). She is 14 years and 2 months old as of March 12, 2012. She is the only sibling I've ever had, and my very best friend in the world. And today was the day that we had to put her to sleep.

So I will leave you, and myself, with all the pictures I've ever taken of her to commemorate the fantastic 14 years of her life. She was the greatest dog in the universe, and we frequently told her she was better than people. Because in all honesty, she was.

 So that was Gennie over the last couple years. And this was her today.

Goodbye Gennie. You were the best dog a girl could ever ask for. I hope you have the best time ever in Doggy Heaven.

Thanks for reading. <3

"The heavens themselves blaze forth the death of princes." - Julius Caesar (Shakespeare).