Saturday, March 26, 2011

Working When You Aren't Really Working

I don't like sitting around doing nothing.

Not that that's what I'm doing. I'm working two part time jobs, both of which are ramping up the demands, but it feels like it's been a while since I was last actually acting.

But acting is what I came to New York to do. So that's what I'm aiming for.

When I played on the basketball team for high school, back in the fall before tryouts, I'd spend some time just about every day in the local community center gym practicing drills over and over again by myself. I'd make varsity, but I spent all season on the bench.

The reason is that while I practiced drills all by myself, my teammates were practicing with each other, actually playing games of basketball. I got good at layups. They got good at they real game.

I don't make the same mistake twice if I can help it. So instead of practicing acting all by myself, I've teamed up with a friend. Instead of waiting for someone to cast us in something, we're doing a scene together from Henry VI, part one. Suffolk meeting Margaret. We present it for the good folks at the Shakespeare Forum this coming Tuesday.

It feels good to be doing some Shakespeare scenes again, even if it's just in a friend's apartment.

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Them's The Breaks.

fromJoel Putnam
sender-timeSent at 1:33 PM 
toNatalia T-------
dateWed, Mar 16, 2011 at 1:33 PM
subjectShooting schedule

Mar 16 
Hey there, both my jobs are starting to ask about my availability on the weekend we plan to film. Do we have a rough shooting schedule yet? Thanks!



fromNatalia T------
toJoel Putnam 
dateThu, Mar 17, 2011 at 1:54 PM
subjectRe: Shooting schedule

Hey there, it's been crazy, and I cast another guy for (your part) yesterday - didn't expect it, but he just hit the profile fully. And totally forgot to let you know right away.
I'll be considering you for other part in the next project.
Thank you very much for your time!

Sent from my Verizon Wireless BlackBerry

Sunday, March 13, 2011

Coming to Theaters Nowhere Near You!

I've been cast in my first short film! It's a thesis project for a grad student from (I think) Columbia. I'm not giving too much away but it focuses on two step-brothers after their (step-)father has died. One's a nice guy, one's flat out evil. I'm the evil one.

The title is "In Denial." It'll be my first time acting for a camera outside of the nice sound stages in NYU's Tisch on Broadway. In fact, it will be the big step to getting me to have visited all five boroughs, as this is being shot in the only one I have yet to visit: Staten Island.

My costume includes a gold chain and leather jacket. The first question they asked me after casting me was if I owned either. I don't. Anyone have something I could borrow?

Saturday, March 5, 2011

Good Days, New Job.

This picture has nothing to do with the rest of the entry. It is, however, hilarious, and part of one of my regular New York commutes. Look closely if you don't see an alternate reason why black is so popular here.

Anyway, Tuesday morning I was sipping hot cider in a coffee shop on Broadway, across the street from Tisch. Nibbling on my complimentary Madeline cookie while I memorized Shakespeare, it struck me that I was having exactly the kind of day I'd moved to New York for.

I'd had an audition for a Marlowe play the night before, and got a callback notice the next morning. I was about to go shoot another student film at NYU an hour later. That night I was going to meet with a group of other actors to help me prep my monologues for the best non-equity theater in town, The Flea. I'd be auditioning the next morning for them. And I paid for it all by helping kids I liked with their homework.  It's a pretty nice life.

The only real issue I have is not quite enough work (read: income). So, starting next week, I'm taking on a new part-time job: Coordinator at Edge Studios. Edge produces voiceover, and also trains new voiceover talent. I'll be working the phones, managing career consultations with new students, and working a few projects to make day to day operations run smoothly. I'd been an intern compensated in training already up to this point, coming in at odd hours to fill in for people who were sick or on vacation. Now I'll be coming in regularly as a real employee.

Tutoring will still be what pays my rent, groceries, and electric bill. But the work at Edge will be what lets me get some professional training, a drink with friends, and maybe some (*gasp*) actual furniture for my apartment.

In the meantime, I've got my first ever Equity Principal Auditions next Monday and Thursday. These are the open calls you get up early in the morning for and wait around all day hoping they'll see you. But they're for the big theaters with press reviews, extendable runs, and big audiences. Here's hoping.