Planning

When you are working as an actor and setting your own schedule one thing that is often overlooked, by myself at least, is to schedule days off.  It seems like an odd thing because I am constantly doing exactly what I want to be doing: Acting.  The problem is that sometimes you do need to step away from what you love, just to realize how much you love it.  So today I got together with my friend Carey (who is all sorts of awesome) and we planned out roughly a week of our schedules making sure to include a day off.  I’m going to go ahead and count today as my day off because later I am going to see Les Miserables and then just take it easy.  Tomorrow will be my first rehearsal for The Princess Bride as well as coaching speech and debate. I might get bored sometime later this evening and decide to listen to a new musical or read a script but mostly I am going to focus on just enjoying a relaxing day.

UPDATE: I put up 3 new videos in the Reel & Video section of my site, go check it out if you want to see some of the other work that I have done in the past few years.

Humorous Interpretation

Speech and debate played a very big role in my high school life and continues to be a large part of my world to this day.  I loved the competitive aspect that was brought into the world of performance and nothing helps a young performer more than doing just that, performing.  A Lot.  Though I am a coach now and no longer perform in speech and debate I am lucky enough to have a copy of the piece that I performed my senior year of high school.  In an effort to avoid losing that copy accidentally due to a hard drive crash or the DVD hard copy getting lost or destroyed I have finally uploaded the video on YouTube! Yes I am on a bit of an uploading kick as of late but it makes sense considering that I have done a lot of work in the past that friends I have now haven’t ever gotten to see.  So for those of you who want to see what Nick looked like one week before he graduated Niwot High School look no further! I present to you Revenge of the Lawn Gnomes by R.L. Stein.

 

Hearing back

A lovely Friday to all those amazingly wonderful people who find there way to my website. Today I had fun filled day of filming a horror short and performing in another show of The Rover.

The horror short was titled Smile and is a student film I had auditioned for on Wednesday at the SAG-AFTRA office downtown. The film has 3 roles and at the audition I read for all of the parts. The director sent out his final casting choices that night! For those of you who don’t do the whole acting and auditioning thing let me just tell you that in my experience that is very rare. Thursday morning we received an electronic copy of the final script and the call times/shot list for Friday. Like most film projects we fell behind

Weekend Catch Up

Ahhhh I have fallen behind but I will catch myself back up…in one post!

Streamwood Sabre Speech Shindig: The kids did great!  I was so proud of the students who placed in the tournament because it was a perfect representation of hard work = results.  The kids who have been showing up to practice, working with coaches, working with their peers, stepping out their comfort zones, challenges themselves etc…all of them have shown great improvement and a lot of them placed in their respective events.  If you are interested in the specifics for the tournament you can see the overall team scores as well as the individual results on an amazing website called Speechwire. I look froward to more hard work from all the kids as we approach the first holiday break of the year.

 The Rover: Our second weekend of the show went quite well.  On Saturday and Sunday we had good houses of about 20~28 people each show.  The energy of the production was not lost due to our 3 day break, in fact I think everyone was rather well rested and energized from some time off.  The second weekend of a show is alway very interesting to me because typically the actors and crew have just spent about 7+ days of constructing the set, doing a cue to cue rehearsal, 2-3 dress rehearsals, 1-2 previews and then the opening weekend of the show.  After having been immersed in the show for that solid week+ I am always curious to see how everyone comes back to the production.  Thankfully this group of actors is very talented and professional.  I am excited for another 8 wonderful shows with these crazy goof balls.

Titus Andronicus: On Monday evening I attended a production of Titus Andronicus produced by The Right Brain Project (RBP) which my friend Zack Meyer was performing in. The show will be running for one more weekend and I would highly recommend that you GO SEE THIS SHOW!!! First off I love Titus Andronicus, I think that it is a brutally beautiful piece of work and when staged correctly can be exceptionally powerful.  The RBP does a good job with this production, the acting is solid, the scenic and costume designs work together (love it when that happens) and the fact that the amount of fake blood used in the show warrants a poncho for every member of the audience is awesome.  Check out their website for purchasing info, tickets will most likely be going fast for this closing weekend. Also, Zack was awesome.

That isn’t everything…but it is a lot of things and that’s good for now!  Till next time.

Streamwood

Today is a wonderful day already. Currently I am sitting in the cafeteria at Streamwood High School attending my first speech tournament of the 2012-2013 season. This tournament is a Novice/JV tournament which means that only first and second year students can compete while Varsity students are assisting their teammates and coaches with all the duties associated with running and participating in a tournament.

For those people who do not know what a speech and debate tournament is, I will provide you with a brief summation. Students typically need to arrive at their own high school between 6:00 and 6:30 am to catch the bus depending on how far away the host school is. Materials that are kept in the school that the students will need are picked up and loaded onto the bus. The bus lives exactly on time so NEVER be late. It is definitely a “5 minutes early you are on time. On time means you are late” type of situation. The bus will arrive at the tournament location and everyone will unload from the bus and move into the cafeteria where the team picks a table and drops off their stuff. The students then head off to a room where they do a vocal and physical warm up as well as perform their piece. Following the warm-up the coach will give the students their codes so they know which rooms they will be performing in throughout the day. Typically the students will compete in 3 rounds with each room per round containing 5-7 students depending on the size of the tournament. The students are given a rank (1-7) based on their performance weighed against everyone else in the round. Some tournaments will then take the scores and be done after that, other tournaments prefer to take the top 6 scores and have a finals round. Following that the tournament awards ceremony for all events is held and then we get on the bus and head back home. Yikes! What a crazy day.

So yes today I woke up at 4:30 in the morning, which has been my bedtime far more often than it has been the beginning of the day in recent months, and got myself ready to motivate some youngsters!!!….and by that I mean I got a venti coffee and downed that beast. While waiting for all the kids to arrive one of the young men on the team showed up with his tie all askew and this was my first assignment for the day: making sure that all these young men look like young gentleman. Sadly I must report that I did fail some of them. Most of them need combs and clothes that fit! Baby steps.

Currently we are two rounds into the tournament, the team seems to be doing well so far. I will post the final results later.

Happily Busy

The weather has finally cooled off in Chicago, took until October 25th which is quite amazing, but that has not slowed down my schedule today.

I woke up with morning at 6:30 feeling a bit congested and not really wanting to get out of bed. I sucked it up, not wanting to spray myself in the face with water, and got ready to do Yoga X. About 15 minutes into the program my nose started to clear up and I received a jolt of energy. By the time I finished up shavasana I was feeling awake, energized and ready to tackle the day.

I auditioned for two films today, one called The Martyr and the other called Axed Story. Both auditions went well but I was told that I won’t be hearing anything for at least two weeks for the first one and a month for the second one. I liked both of the scripts, or at least the parts I got to read, and would enjoy working on either project. Currently I am downtown at The Art Institute of Chicago assisting with a public hunt for Watson Adventures along with my friend Nicole. She said that it is a large group (47) for a public hunt but we managed to get the groups sent off without a hitch. They should all be back with the next 35 minutes.

Following the conclusion of this hunt I will be swinging by my residence to pick up my bag (such a useful bag), grab some food and them heading off to…another audition! Boom school. After that I make my way to The Rivendell Theater for opening night of The Rover by Aphra Behn. I am very excited to open the show and see what new moments and discoveries are made tonight. Plus, surprise not, the cast part is going to be after the show. Yes it is a costume party. Yes I am dressing as Rufio from Hook. Of course I will take a ton of photos because most of the cast will be dressing as characters from the Peter Pan world.

Time to finish up this Hunt! Stay tuned for pictures.

Mobile Update #1

Oh the wonders and joys of technology. Though I bought my domain over a year ago I am just now really getting my situation together when it comes to running my own website. I am still not completely set with the theme but it is a good filler for the time being…at least until I get my reel completed. However today brings a new and fun WordPress experience to my life; updating my website from my cell phone.

Initially I had to download the WordPress app for my iPhone which was no problem at all. Following that I attempted to sign in but was notified that I needed to adjust a setting in my admin panel directly from my computer. With the correct settings in order I logged onto the WordPress app and here we are! Although I guess I won’t know until later if this update actually made it onto my website.

It was a pretty successful morning I woke up and watched monday nights episodes of The Daily Show and The Colbert Report before doing it an hour and a half of yoga, eating breakfast, and then getting ready for speech and debate.

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Currently I am standing at the Irving Park Metra getting ready to board the train before it heads out to Arlington Heights. Hopefully it is a good practice and then I have a wonderful rehearsal this evening.

My Time

Starting on September 10th I began my second attempt at the P90X program.  The first time though I made it until day 16 when an injury sidelined me.  I continued to do a little bit of light working out but over the summer got up to 188 by the end of summer camp (which I will get to another time) and decided that I needed to get back to a more motivated state. today marks day 25 and I am feeling great so far.  I have not skipped any of the workouts and am very proud of that.  So in 4 days I will start phase 2 of the program which is supposed to really kick my butt.

In order to keep myself going along for these 90 days I listened to what so many have said before, I put up a poster board in my room and divided it into a grid of 154 squares.  I am putting a big X in the middle of each box for every day that I do something.  I am going to add different lines of different colors for other activities that I would like to accomplish every day in my pursuit of becoming a more marketed actor.

Today will be another day of speech, I think that the team is very strong this year and am excited that we have so many kids that are working this hard.  Till next time

Commit

Continuing along the path of figuring out how to be a self promoting actor who knows very little about website design I am trying to commit more time to the seemingly daunting task.  A quick recap of what has been happening in my life would be good. I have spent the last month of September keeping myself busy with a few different activities.  Saturdays and Sundays I was working on the Tall Ship Windy down at Navy Pier as a Docent (Historical Interpreter) and having an absolute blast. I would lead the Arrrrchitecture sail and then be one of the two Docents on the Real Pirates of the Inland Sea sail. In between the sails I would stand dockside and try to get people to come on sails.  It was fun work and I am planning on going back next year and working again…and if I do end up doing that hopefully people who read this will come join me for a sail!

The speech and debate season is in full swing, in fact I have practice to get to after this update. That has been taking up my Tuesdays and Thursdays.

Finally I have been in rehearsal for a production of The Rover that is being produced by Twenty Percent Chicago.  The cast is a joy to be working with and I am excited with the work that has been put into the show so far.  We still have a lot that needs to get done but I know we will be putting together a quality product when all is said and done.

Ok that quick update went a bit longer than I meant but hey I should get into the habit of doing this more!