There's a pervasive belief in theater that you have to live, breathe, and eat your art in order to "make it" or be a "real actor".
I’ve written about it before and I’ll probably write about it again.
But right now, I think it’s especially important to speak to this. We’re at a time when we CAN’T do theater the way we have before. Thousands of actors are out of work and hundreds (but probably thousands again) of small, underfunded theaters are in danger of not being able to open even when a stay-at-home order is lifted.
But… don’t worry. There’s hope.
There is Life Between Theater.
I know this. Because I am it. I live it daily. I’ve built my LIFE around it.
Those who know me personally are probably confused at this point. Because yes - I do perform. I do teach singing. I do coach audition material and I specifically work with performers to find balance and health while trying to manage finances and life generally.
It would look as though my entire LIFE revolves around theater. And in a way, it does.
But I’ve found during this time at home, when I can only teach virtually (and when I had already planned time off from performing for pregnancy), has really hit home the fact that if you so choose you can build a life that INCLUDES theater but is not ABOUT theater.
And honestly, I think that will be the ONLY way you are actually going to be HAPPY with your theater career in any form it may take.
And and - it’s the only way you can stay CONSISTENTLY MOTIVATED to keep moving forward in your career.
Because let’s be honest. Only a select few will actually reach the heights of consistent Broadway performance or Hollywood status. And plenty of us have already figured out that - while hard work is necessary in this business - it is not always what gets you to the top.
Meaning if you’re ability to be motivated, move forward consistently, and build a life you love is all contingent of some dude in a room LIKING you enough… that’s not going to be a way to THRIVE in your art.
But you CAN have a thriving performance career that feels your soul, your art, your pocket, while also having a complex and meaningful life OUTSIDE of theater. And THAT is a great thing to start to discover, right now, when theater is not an option.
This also means that right now, when we’re in the middle of a pandemic of unprecedented proportions (at least for most of us living currently), there ARE things you can do to keep yourself sane, moving forward, and focused on your future.
And it DOESN’T have to mean you post a new karaoke video of you every day OR completely redo your audition book OR website OR reel (though… all great ideas once you get your motivation going ;)
What are NON-theater things that have been keeping you motivated and moving forward in LIFE?
Stay tuned and I’ll let you know what’s keeping me going (and keeping me real and keeping me balanced) during all this soon...
Write something about yourself. No need to be fancy, just an overview.