Sunday, January 18, 2009

Long Time No See

*head falls on keyboard*
*rubs feet*
*rubs her EVERYTHING*

So hi there, haha. It's been awhile.

Let's start with a brief overview of my week since I talked to you. Three key points occurred - I had all my classes, I moved and I went out to Hollywood Blvd. I started this entry 3 days ago and it is now Sunday. That's how busy I have been. Now, onto regaling you...

The thing that probably caught your eye most was the moving bit. Yes, I did move, to the nicer dorm from the video this time. The room itself is a little bit smaller than the one I had the Vine, but here everyone has a bed on the ground instead of six feet off the ground with no guardrail, there is a walk-in closet, a basin sink and a full kitchen. I'm talking dishwasher, oven, stovetop, all brand new. There's also a gorgeous wall of exposed brick with a nice view in the daytime from the lovely new windows. We're all digging it, even if it did take a day and a half in the middle of the first week of the school to do it.

Yes, I said we - Tara, the third roommate is still in the mix. But she has definitely been proving herself to be a cool chick now that the mania of the first weekend has blown over. She actually has a sense of humor that is very complimentary to me and Wendy's and enjoys alot of the same movies and music we do. The chick talks about Dresden Dolls, Rilo Kliey and Regina Spektor with knowledge behind it - this might work. I think the drinking thing is more just a matter of time than anything else. We even had a drink together the other night (away from the dorm,) but that's another story for another blog.

Anyway, we have moved in and like it much more here.

For my classes, I am going to try to just categorize:

TV Genre: This class should be one of the most interesting, because I know close to zero about acting on camera. There is a shift of focus you need to do, tone down both the body and facial reaction, etc. By the end of the class, though, we will have a recording for our reel. The teacher is very gay and very cool, but I think will definitely be a tough grader. It is solely out of the desire to have us be as calm and collected in the TV world as we can be and we can walk onto a set like we've done it a thousand times, which is an extremely relevant tool if you are going to try and do a damn thing in LA. If you get cast and come in not knowing what you're doing, you can kiss it. They have ten other people sitting by the phone waiting.

We're gonna be doing commercials, drama series and sitcom sides. Woot! And for our final, we can bring in our own concepts to him to film. Tara has an AWESOME idea for a female vigilante/serial killer, kind of a female Dexter, and I have two ideas. One is a concept for a YouTube viral vid kind of a show, which we discussed as being a strange new venue of self-marketing, and the other would be a TV show. More to come on that stuff.

Cabaret/Broadway: The main course of my semester. I have it 3 times a week. My teacher is...she is definitely wacky, haha. She's done a little of everything in her career though and definitely has a passion for the cabaret genre, which I love about her. I was worried we'd have a teacher who would be offering it to us as something to do while you're looking for work, or a fallback thing. Both of these avenues are extremely viable, but cabaret can be oh so much more than that and I seriously adore the concept. It's so freeing to be able to just get up there and sing the song YOU want to sing, however YOU want to sing it, regardless of type, gender, whatever. The final is going to be an actual cabaret show performed in the school cafe, so that is awesome!

We all had to do this standard they gave us called "What'll I Do," which some of you may know if you heard it. We could do anything with it melodically, change the lyrics, use a gimmick, whatever we wanted. She just wanted us to make a 'bold choice.' I was coming up with some weird things, like singing to a person on the ground I just killed, being a cutter (it's a little bit of a melancholy song,) but Wendy gave me something that I wouldn't feel too insane to do. Or at least insane in a quasi-healthy way, at least. I did it as a crazy "Twilight" fan.

For those of you who don't know, I can't stand Twilight. I won't go into it here, but Tara had the book, I had some black eyeliner and the next day I walked into class with the book swaddled in a blanket like a child with crazy goth swirls and crow designs on my face. I pulled that book out and everyone lost their minds laughing. I still owe Wendy Pinkberry for that one.

The night before that class was the night I knew that Wendy, Tara and I were already on our way to being great friends. I was so terrified about performing in the cabaret class. The biggest bout of nerves I was facing was the fact that I haven't sang in a class setting (aka up for critique,) in six years. I didn't want to go up there in the WORST way the next day. But Tara and Wendy rooted me on all night. They even sang a song acapella for me more than a little badly just to give me the guts to sing my song for them. As they were singing, stumbling through "I'd Give It All For You" with all of us laughing, I knew we were already closer than I any of us knew.

Anyway, my song went over gangbusters and I sang "I'm The Only One," by Melissa Etheridge as my first song to be considered for our cabaret at the end of the semester. I really want to get a private voice coach for the next semester, cuz I'm easily slipping into the comfortable "Belt For Jesus and If It's Too Loud You're Too Old," range of my voice, which feels weird compared to the other people in the class. The other song I'm working on is a parady of "Adelaide's Lament," from Guys and Dolls, about phone sex. I think that one will bring the house down if I do it right.

Improvisation: The chick who teaches this class and totally reminds me of me when I'm being my weirdest. She had us play a lot of interesting games, too, because it's only the five BFA musical alums in the class, so we have a lot of time to explore and move quickly in the curriculum. The final for this one is an actual improv performance in the theater. AHHH! I've gotten better at improv over the years but that is still a nerve-wracking thought. Anyway, we did a few exercises and I have to keep a journal of my observations and etc in that one. I have yet to start that *awkward whistle*

Greco/Roman Theatre: Oh, my, GOD. What CAN'T I say about this class. A) My teacher seems like a hard-nosed bitch but in the nicest, coolest way she could be, B) The content of this class is KICK-ASS, just as I knew it would be, and C) I am ready to kill nearly every child (yes, child,) in this class. The five BFA alums I am with in improv are in this one too, along with 25 or so 2nd semesters. They are loud, obnoxious, and seriously look/sound/act like they are 3. I was their age when I was a 2nd semester and let me tell you, if this is how the LA kids are allowed to act? LA has it EASY. All of these children would have been booted within the first week for behaving the way they were behaving. The 5 of us from NY were horrified at their lack of maturity or even lack of intelligence or focus.

Trust me, when you get up in front of the class and announce with all seriousness that your sole career goal is to be Reese Witherspoon's best friend or your favorite performers are Zack and Cody, you have problems.

Needless to say, by the end of the class the five of us were huddled in the back with one other kid in the 2nd semester class who had a brain in their head ready to cry, scream or kill. A few of us I think were ready to do all of the above. Sergine, a 36-year-old professional actress from Montreal who returned to AMDA for one semester to absorb a little before she went off on her first big directing venture, and she was seriously about to shoot through the roof. These kids will be lucky if the 5 of us don't lay smack downs on them all.

Ok, class rambling done! Onto my first big adventure in LA - going to Hollywood Blvd. I have discovered that Hollywood Blvd is the Times Square of LA. There is a mall, the big theaters, Graumann's Chinese, The Kodak, all sorts of stuff. Anyway, Wendy needed to get something slutty and hardcore to wear to her boyfriend's DJ gig on Saturday and I had nothing better to do. So away we went on what we thought would be an hour tops trip to Hollywood Blvd.

Three hours later, we arrived home.

We finally found something awesome for her to wear when the store we were in was closing (think Sgt Pepper meets Marilyn Manson,) and went to go home. Lots of time, not even 9pm yet. We had gone to Sephora and I had left with only two items, one being a lip balm and both being actual things I required, and figured we'd get food and head home.

First thing, everything was closed. At 9pm. On a Thursday in Hollywood, California. Excuse me? The streets are still teeming with people, what the crap is up with that? We didn't find anywhere to eat until we were nearly home an hour later. Yes, an hour later. Cuz for a good portion of our adventure home, we walked in the wrong direction.

Anyway, we got home and all was well.

*pantspantspants* I have so much more to tell you about - My friend Tim coming into town with Jeff Dunahm, my adventure to Santa Monica Blvd, the Ripley's Believe It Or Not Odditorium, but I am spent for now. That stuff IS coming though, I promise. Along with pics of my goth makeup as per request, pics of the old and new apartments and all that good stuff. But now, I must go compose lyrics about men whacking their bank accounts away.

Stay safe all!

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