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Counting Down to G-Day in 365

June 9, 2013

May 17th, 2014 is my G-Day. Graduation Day. I’m three years down, senior year to go before I graduate with a B.A. in Theatre, double-minor in Writing and Stage Combat. It doesn’t seem real—wasn’t I just a freshman? Regardless of my warped perception of time and how it passes, G-Day is coming. Although I am really excited for my senior year (moving off-campus! More stage combat! Working on an original piece with a friend!), I only have this year to figure out and put my post-college plans in motion.

What are my post-college plans? Well…I’m working on it. In my dream of dreams, I aspire to create (or recreate the old) new works of theatre by performing, fighting, writing and devising. I want to act, continue performing stage combat as an actor-combatant and write plays and poetry (do something with my minors). I know I can also work for theatre companies in House or Stage Management as well as use social media. Seemingly, I have useful skills and experience that could get me work where ever I go and besides that, could support my ambitions? At the very least, I can bring my tarot cards out and charge for readings.

Where to go is my next concern. Going back to my parents’ house, even for just awhile, is out of the question and there’s no job market there to even make staying there worth it. I could stay in my apartment after graduation and work around town, saving money. Still, by autumn 2013 I will have to move on. Now, maybe, I’ll end up scoring a great gig that will keep me occupied and housed for a few months and I won’t have to worry about where to go next for awhile. Getting a job with a theatre company for an extended period of time would be ideal but eventually, I will have to figure out my next move and it’s looking more and more like it’s going to be New York City.

I considered other places—Ottawa, Toronto, Chicago, Buffalo…I didn’t even add L.A. to my list because I hate the heat and have no interest in pursuing film/television work. Although I know friends who have gone out there and are working (even—especially in theatre—do I hear correctly that L.A. has become quite the theatre town?), L.A.’s not the market for me to go after. While I love Canada, being a non-citizen, I acknowledged that if I were to move and work in either city, it would most definitely be a permanent move and right now, I’m too young to consider settling in one place for the rest of my life. I lived eighteen years in one town and since then, I have done more traveling than I’ve ever thought I would and I love it. I need a new, a bigger town!

I thought about Chicago—and the GREAT theatre companies it has that I would love working for, like Babes with Blades and Starkid Productions. Then I realized that not only have I never been to Chicago and have no idea what it is really like, but I don’t know anyone who lives there. Whose couch would I crash on while I’m getting used to the city and looking for a place to live? Networking is clearly key for me. I’m not a city girl and I’ve only been to New York City a few times, so having people I know already there is a HUGE pro on my list.

I even considered moving first to Buffalo, to gain experience, maybe earn money before making the leap to the big city but the more I consider it, the less I am convinced it would be a good idea to sink my heart and money into a place I intend to leave soon as possible. It seems heading straight down to NYC is what I’ll do once I’m graduated. But city-living is expensive, more expensive than I can probably predict, especially with my student loans and the upcoming expenses I’m already dreading. Like headshots? I’m cringing, I haven’t even started talking to photographers yet and I’m already cringing at those prices. I get it’s a necessary evil expense (how can I convince my family to make this my Christmas present?) and I’m a terrible model to boot. I blink a lot, and fidget. And classes—just because I’ll have graduated doesn’t mean I’m done learning. There’s SAFD membership dues, living expenses, I’ll need to get a metrocard…

But while I figure out how to handle the financial side, I can focus on what I do have going for me, like my new dance shoes. I’ve had my old character shoes since I was fourteen and they’ve done their show time. Here’s to the two-inch heel! For someone like me who likes flats, two inches is a lot but I think they were worth the investment I’m putting into my future (at the very least, I’m taking another dance class in the fall so I will get to use them then). Meanwhile, there’s lots of career planning I can do for free, right here at home! Like branding: I’ve been doing research on the side for a while now but I really want to fully invest myself in it, especially since it will reflect what I do with my headshots, the actor website I plan to update and my rep book—3 years of college plus the search for college audition material leaves me with tons of sheet music and monologues but what pieces are really good for me? I love tragic and historical Shakespeare and contemporary dramas so I have lots of good monologues for those works but I lack when it comes to the comedic and pop/rock.

THINGS TO DO THIS SUMMER

  • Get my rep book ordered all nice and neat. That means reading some more plays (and yes, some of them have to be old-timey comedy of manners. You never know!)
  • Speaking of the rep book…auditions are coming up! Get audition materials ready.
  • Work out. It’s going to be a long summer until my next combat class. Even if I don’t have weapons to practice with, I can at least keep (get in better?) shape.
  • Write! Hide in my room from my family in the dark of the night and write—poetry, plays, blogs…write something that might end up being good to publish.
  • What am I doing with my hair? Since I’ve been in college, it’s been long, short, dyed…if I’m getting headshots, it sounds like it’s time to decide.
  • Read Games of Thrones. I have a reputation in speed-reading to uphold and I’ve been looking for a good fantasy read.
  •  Downsize. That sounds ridiculous now that I’m moving from a dorm into an apartment and I’m suddenly needing pots and lamps to fill it with. But seriously, this time next year, I’ll be living out of boxes and even if I get a New York City apartment, I don’t think I am going to have a lot of space. I guess this is when I start figuring what is really important to me in my life.

Well, I’ll be blogging a bit throughout the summer but I don’t expect any more theatre adventures until fall, when I’ll be checking back in with this To-Do list anyhow. Have a good summer and see you next semester!

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