Tag: acting

Kitchen

Goodbye…agent..and cat

Yesterday I spent some time on Backstage. I had started my membership again and in the three days since this little tingle from deep within me started to awaken… an excitement about acting that had tried to return but I wasn’t ready…yet.

So I began to submit myself for auditions and even learned that a theater company I’ve worked with is holding auditions and in just a text, a click, I began to remember…

I Am An Actress

Acting seems to have been revealed in the past few years as the business it really is. In that I feel free to renter without this veil of BS I was having to play. Pretending to NOT NOTICE and then when I did take offense when my agent didn’t respond the way i wanted her to ..defend who I felt needed her protection.

Now I can audition for work I want to do and for the price I want to get paid and all becasue I removed my REPRESENTATION in my online profile from agent to NONE>
Becasue in the end I desire to represent myself and I have no need for middle people –

Also It asked me on my profile if I still have a calico cat. I had forgotten that backstage and casting network asks these questions in case the piece you are auditioning for needs one.

My cat Kito died in December and so I erased the information and replaced it with a DOG…which at that very moment ended up getting out our back fence and when I left my desk to retrieve him he was poking his head under my house…

He found four baby kittens..

Funny how letting go really often means saying hello.

I am currently talking directly to casting directors, producers and writers about auditions and parts and I have to tell you… I love it..

Being my own agent, manager and publicist is going to be a joy becasue the only thing I have learned I can control is how I HANDLE myself.

My son has begun taking care of the kittens…he is a sweet boy and it is amazing that out of all the houses in the block…the momma cat chose ours.

Kitchen

YOU NEVER LET ME GO…THANK GOODNESS

I WROTE this diddy the other day…part of a song someone should write

You never let me go
You never let me go
You never let me go
No matter how I try to say good-

I never let you go
I never let you go
I never let you go
I matter how you tried to say good-

And here is the scene…it is about NOT being angry or unhappy or discontent.. and how strange that feels to me

A couple sitting on a rocking wooden bench looking over the mountains…sipping kambucha..

You: Now what

Me: no idea

You: I don’t know how to move from here

ME; you want to go back

You: Back there

Me: yes

You: because newness is hard

Me: I suppose

You: All this for nothin

Me: I guess

You: Gags and tittels

Me: entertainment with blood stains

You: Marriage is boring when we aren’t fighting

Me: That’s your issue

You: Fuck you!

Me: Your welcome.

You : I feel better now…thanks… ( Kisses)

Kitchen

HEY OLD SELF.

I finally got around to watching Tully. IT reminded me of a sketch I wrote and filmed about four years ago. It was such a special moment in my life and I worked with such a special women. Unforntualy I wasn’t able to keep her close and we have since separated but maybe that is the truth…you can’t keep all of you when you are evolving…
https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=YDqZljVP86sA ROOM OF MY OWN.

Here is the full script…FULL SCRIPT READ ALONGI loved this time of my life- right before I entered back into acting and now…as I exit…the process begins again…I think IT IS TIME I write a new skit…where the older susie in this story meets up with me.

I MISS MY OLDER SUSIE——

Kitchen

Hello …Hoʻoponopono

The prayer of Ho’oponopono is as I learned it to let go of the TIDES the generational pain you carry so as to not transfer them to the next one. IT is based on the idea of the lineage of emotional pain.

You say the name of the person that you have an “issue with” ( past or present
Then say
Please forgive me
I am sorry
I love you
Thank you

You will find that it is difficult for you to do for certain people and those are the people you need to keep saying this to until you don’t have difficulty doing it.

For me it was like I was slowly releasing  myself from a rope that was tied around my neck and with each repetition over time it was a thread that broke until I was free and so was the person I did the prayer for…

THe prayer is Hawaiian and it was given to me by a Reike teacher who told me to say it for the people I claim have hurt me. At the time the list was long. I was late 30ths and I had a colorful life and in it there were missteps but the thing about this prayer, for lack of a better word is that it changed the villain from them to me…it gave me a sense of responsibility in the relationship because for one reason or another I was still holding onto it in a negative way. IT needed a correction if I wanted to be set free and who better to set yourself free than your own self.

It was about ME asking for forgiveness of the “people who wronged me” and in that I slowly began to realize that I had created extended pain and stress in my body by holding others in their characters—-their roles in my life. My negative thoughts had warm homes becasue I gave them that place in my body. I allowed them there..THis was a wonderful key that unlocked my own ability to negotiate my thought process and since then…I try to immediately release negative thoughts and then use that grace toward my own desires or destiny…

This energy we have is strong and when you speak ill of someone you can indeed maintain the “pull” that story you are telling yourself has on you.

The wild thing i learned from this experience was that I am NOT my stories or my experiences…I can let them go through forgiveness and movement and in the end I find that I am what I think about…who I see and how I do what I do.

My stories are justification…beliefs that only mean as much as we lean on them

Look at your life, your daily habits- you are all those thoughts and those things…

if you are thinking nastly thoughts about others and yourself…then you are  dare I say nasty person… becasue I have come to learn that being kind means… you can address those thoughts in your own head..and heart…and spend time trying to see the situation from as many angles as possible so that YOUR point of view is just ONE of them and not the only one.

Then you begin to dilute your Nasty thoughts and ask them kindly to leave because as long as you have them… you are them…

I know this because I have spent the last 5 years walking though my life and although I am not friends with everyone in my life..i hold no ill will to anyone…no matter what happened between us and I have asked forgiveness if not personally then spiritually as often as I can until I feel I let them go or vis a versa… because Karma is a boomerang and unless you let people go from what they “did” to you” you will hurt them …maybe more that they ever hurt you and then WHO is the VIllain?

Be sweet because you can…and the world needs that now…don’t be nasty or mean or sarcastic…because it is overplayed…

Be the one that is ok and if you can’t be OK then go and work on trying to be…one relationship at a time.

Xo
S

Kitchen

London vs American Acting

Pretending to be a role is very different than being the role. It gets really messy when you discuss this with the acting community… because the style of off shoots of METHOD acting Have become integrated in our teachings. The teachers of today were among the first or second generation of this approach. It is imbedded and systemic…it can’t be undone…like the vine that a German guy brought to NC and it now covers all the trees and looks like a forest but it is a vine killing the forest itself…looks can be deceptive.
I went to London in 1995/6 and worked with the best teachers from RADA that we now working at Webber Douglas I was kind of like the vine…going there to learn what they were doing but in a way…starting to expose the alternative American training to these classical teachers…perhaps they saw the future…a. Bunch of emotionally unstable artists…just waiting to happen.
Here is a perfect example of how my American approach to acting was received.
I was the ONLY American actor there and they accepted me into a class of post graduate students. I was beyond thrilled and thankful.
we had midterm performances and I did a monologue that I thought was amazing. I mean I broke down on stage crying and opening up my heart. I was amazed how OPEN i way, how connected to my true self…and what happened after that was that the school threatened to kick me out.
They were very confused by what I was doing and said…”why are YOU crying? That’s not your job! That is the job of the audience!”
It was such a wakeup call. I was sitting across from an acting instructor and she was holding a tissue box and I was just crying again. Now from her critique of my amazing breakthrough movement…and she was like..
“what the hell are you doing?” That was ugly and sloppy and not professional at all”
all I see in my memory bank is a constant flow of tissues.
I am not sure I ever fully adapted their approach as my first language but it gave me structure to my work in many ways.
After they suggested I consider leaving the school I cut my emotional connections off and started making fun of the teachers ( this this was s suggestion of one of the teachers themselves) in My final showcase monologue of a high strung woman…..pretending to Steward Pierce our high strong voice teacher.
This time I was greeted with accolades…. They were fully impressed with my IMPRESSION of a character- my ability to ACT…not become…
I remember this one teacher was like do you want to know who we were all most surprised by? I was feeling like such the pathetic student I was like…no…
She smiled and said. YOU.
It was such a huge shock and wake up call.
However. I rarely see classical teaching anymore and even London theater…in their contemporary theatre seemed so become so American- talk about the tail wagging the dog.

Kitchen

An Actor’s Approach to Letting go of a Character to Avoid Personal Psychological Concussions

As an actress I devoted myself to years of intensive training that taught me how to embody any type of character I wanted to portray. The training was based around the concept of tapping in to a thought or belief within my personal life experience that I could then manipulate and repurpose to say and do things that would be convincingly portrayed via a character to the audience. This style of training is successful, yet I also find it capable of causing psychological concussions. Concussions caused by stitching your own personal experiences into the material of a character so seamlessly that you struggle to remember where you end, and your character begins. In my intensive training I was never taught how to tear apart the seams, to separate, to let go, to get out of the character and back in to myself and only myself. I find the omission of this additional training to “fall out of character” fascinating since the ability to let go of a character is part of being able to get another job. So, why wasn’t I taught that? I have my theories!

These physiological concussions are creating repercussions on actors and the society they help mold. The ability to go in and out of a belief system or physical world of one character and into the belief system of another is powerful, playful and at times dangerous. It can be noted in Jim Carey’s documentary, Health Ledger’s experience playing the Joker and Denzel Washington’s journey in Fences to name a few. We should suspect there are countless others if we all dared to look, or they dared to tell. With such a negative social stigma on mental illness it is not safe in the world of acting to admit such a thing, a mental weakness of losing the ability to identify self from character. Perhaps we would train our actors to be better equipped for the life of an actor if we can accept the risks of the business and the management of rewards from success. Leaving yourself open and vulnerable to people in the business, as well as the embodied characters, is dangerous and steps should be made to be more honest with this truth. Perhaps at the very least offer early counsel to parents and talented young souls of where a career in acting can lead.
Much like football we all watch the entertainment with little or no concern for the players. If we cared too much the game lose its luster. As a culture we would have look for another option of entertainment which may not be hard to do however, it would still require a shift in culture. We are starting to hear the desperate concerns from players and their families regarding the long-term ailments from early and repeated concussions. It was only recently that the football world mentioned this and yet it was a known issue, but they would just put the players back on the field until it was publicly addressed.
I love acting and have decided to teach it even though I feel my career as an actor was demonstrative and toxic to my life. I was greatly affected by the psychological concussions caused by acting and they were a heavy burden. They not only impacted many aspects of my life but those of my husband and children as well. The burden was so much to bare and the continual negative outcomes from the concussions created an environment so toxic that I couldn’t maintain a healthy and fulfilling work-life balance. I decided to leave the profession and focus all my love and compassion to raising my children. As my children have grown and their independence has matured I found myself with an opportunity to return to acting which lead to teaching acting.
To part surprise and part dismay I returned only to be haunted by the ghost of the characters I had embodied. Sometimes they are helpful by giving me skills I had yet to learn and other times, because I was a method actor, they put my whole family and everything we had built on the chopping block. How could this be happening even after taking a ten-year long hiatus from the profession? I have pondered this for quite some time and believe it is because of the way I was trained to set up a story for the character and how to format the character. The format demands the character be present in my own life. It parallels a bad habit, an addiction, that now becomes something you must contend with in your own life.
I found myself captivated with the practice of acting and the aspect of movement. I began to create my own concept of training that keeps the acting skills at the forefront of character development but also provides guidance on returning the actor back to neutral- home again, to fully self-identify and unstitch the seam they created to embody their character of choice. My concept is successful and yet my concept creates a dilemma. It is contradictory to the training that many other teachers in my department implement. They rely on the same techniques I was subjected to in my formative years to get the actors to tap in to a very personal place to format a character, yet they do not intend or advise them on the absolute necessity to peel that character away when they are through with the act.
Another challenge I am currently facing is where, do we as teachers, draw the line of acceptable behavior from an actor who has failed to disembody a character? A male student acted out a scene where he portrayed an abusive lover. This actor himself is believed to have attacked a fellow actress at the school. The actress had to leave because of the trauma from the alleged attack. The faculty is aware of the attack and has opted to allow such behavior to happen in the name of artistic expression. Failing to distinguish a realistic attack versus one that was allegedly performed under guise of acting. They can’t seem to distinguish the actor from the character because their belief in the formation of a character doesn’t require such separation.
Parents should question the use of their money being spent on such practices? Are we as teachers at any point obligated to nurture character formation yet also teach the limit of the actions of a character? I have brought my concerns to the school faculty, but the consensus is that no action is required on behalf of the school. I hypothesize that the concepts they rely on to train actors use pain as talent and they refuse to try and find another way to format characters. The issue is that the actors must KNOW THYSELF-know home, self-identify and even more so be taught to know themselves as to create a more defined boundary between them and the character.
Many actors enjoy acting for the opposite reason, it keeps them away from self. If they wear a mask, then there is somewhere to hide physically and emotionally all the while never creating the environment to mature in to their own personal selves. My concept of training teaches the actors to be whole people who have healed their own anger by learning how to get out of character. Know who they are and recognize the natural paths of their own personal maturity. Understand that they are powerful and must respect their abilities or they will become part of the problem. An open and willing actor can find themselves being used and manipulated emotionally without any concern for what they are enduring. Thus, subjecting themselves and those around them to the emotional and psychological concussions from acting. They return to other players in the profession such as agents and managers who don’t delve in to the intentions or practices of the director nor care to, if the actor is getting roles and providing a profit regardless of what those roles represent and the concussions that they are likely to cause.

Kitchen

Are ill actors creating our ill country?

Narrative Psycology is about looking at something from the outside. SO lets take a look from this perspective at how the film and tv world and acting content created HWO we are and HWAT we Believe.

Remember 7 times- see something 7 times and your brain will be a considerperhaps they want what we are LOOKING at.

OUr eyes give us our visions….and if our eyes are on things our brain thinks we must want that..

Advertising works this way…facebook is built this way, algorhythems that my freinds create to Remarket do this for us all-

Get off social media and you’ go through a detox a lack of information a yearning to know more about something…but what…JUNK INFORMATION is harmful and that’s what we have been fed

PAinful content is also harmful- even more so- and that is what actors and Writor s create and in that our society is birthed. Chicken or egg?

If our Actos are tapping into their pain and our writers and producers are creating them we digest it..think on it.. think about what this creates as far as a society.

Built on pain… is PAIN…sorry—— being able to NOT be angry is what we want to work on as a society.. forgive and move on reset.

Kitchen

EMOTIONAL TRAUMA

Having an injury- be it physical or emotional requires rehab and rest. It may even require switching movements or thought processes so as not to reinjure a sensitive JOINT or Sense Memory.

Sense Memory is what actors can use to recall a feeling in order to conjure up an emotion. It was introduced through several American teachers in the early 19th century.

But much like exercises that have been shown to agrivate more than heal or strengthen I believe the same is true with this approach.

The actors who use this method of tapping in to their own personal story open themselves up to becoming the TOOL themselves. Rather than the Classical approach which it to IMAGINE yourself in that world.

This internal approach of using YOURSELF as the PAINT the CANVAS the everything lines one up to tend to NOT heal their own pain.

They are softly guided in the acting world to USE IT. THus is something happens one may BANK IT…burry it…and in a way smile at another tool they have but

The follow through it that the person themselves become the victim. THey become NOT the artist they become more the material…as well and eventually this I believe is why many actors find themselves with unsealed trauma which lead to mental illness.

IT is unsaid but in my class in 7th grade we all stood up to tell a story. The one with the worst story won. See.

WHen I returned to London to see a fellow actress I trained it Star off the WEst End I realized that they too have converted to the AMERICAN approach to acting but in the end
It is brutal and emotionally damaging and I feel by watching and paying for this trip of ENTERTAINMENT we have to understand that there is no REHAB going on…
NO one is rushing to these actors backstage and walking them OUT of the role… They have to figure it out themselves and that is a hard task bring that many of them aren’t even aware they got stuck in the Matrix to begin with…

I believe the clapping it what wakes us up—end of the play – it severs like a SLAP that is meant to shock…but truly——the actors need to be aware that like foot ball playing they are undergoing emotional concussions and the more they use their OWN pain the more severe the injury is and over time it will and could cut their lives off-

Being empathetic is an amazing skill actors have…being too willing to bleed for real is going too far..

I tried to adjust this during my time at New York Film Academy but in the end the whol industry that is currently teaching is based on PAIN as ART…so I decided to step away and speak from this mountain top.

IT is an issue. No one is talking about it. No one is warning a person with severe emotional pain NOT to play like minded roles…no one is teaching actors how to GET OUT OF CHARATER…and the only one really addressing this MASSIVE issue with Becoming the role…regardless of whose well you tap….yours or a spirits is Jim Carrey…He saw it…we are who we believe we are…and that my dear ones is why your mind is so important to know and love and respect and treat kindly.

PEacE and LOVE

Kitchen

Not…Acting

I received the email for the rehearsal of a film that a freind asked me to do. I began to become both excited and then angry. This part of me that doesn’t want to pretend anymore started screaming and I began to act out. I got annoyed with Steve with my mom with the whole world instantly and even ruined a nice dinner by being sad. It wasn’t until I was coming home from he day in the city with my mom that I then got an email that my freind was baking out of the film.

I immediately began to consider ding the same and as soon as I sent the email saying thank you but no thank you a rush of NOT HAVING TO a relief washed over me.

I don’t think I am able to really understand how much I do not want to do something until the idea of NOT doing it comes into play. It was the same with Steve and I. I mentioned this before.

THis part of recasting is a series of instant helloboodbyes. They are about about trying and eyeing how things fit and then not making too much of a commitment and then letting go at the first opportunity. It I then feel like retuning to it…well then…it is from a place of peace and not HAVE TO but rather “Would like to” and not SHould cause I can but may because it woudl be NICE.

Moving from a place of peace is amazing and the toxity of doing something I don’t want to do feel like plugging my finger in a socket and yet…I am seeing I tend to stay there a minute or two just to see if I COULD and WOULD becasue I haven’t fully transitioned into OIGN this book which in a sense is ALL about me and not anyone else…which is the practice I am trying to do. Understanding my OWN self…more.

Kitchen

Hello…acting?

I miss you. I know we had a great time and I know I got worked up a bit but I’ve taken myself out of the running as far as legit work and focused more on student film. Becoming a student myself.

I was just told about another role for a film and it made me smile. The one acting teacher who actually took my class and participated in it asked me to film this with him. I am not sure yet if the director will cast me but the idea of working again made me smile.

I guess you Ae like a lover acting. I have to sometimes let you go – give us space- so we can fall in love again.

I am still interested in that CO-OP Agebcy for actors where we train and also help each other land roles.

They have models of this in the UK and I feel like I would like to connect with a few actors in Miami and build this out…as was my original idea many years ago.

I am going to ask a woman in Miami who is super kind to take my photo and start there. Why do I always say I am not going to act again? Just to keep acting interested in me?
Again…timing——