Thursday, June 15, 2017

Welcome to NY

SO it's safe to say I took a break from blogging. Feel like a story? Then keep reading.

"Actors have to deal with time spent not acting and, during these doldrums, doubts about the validity of the enterprise may arise. Doing some writing could help chase those spooks away." - D.W. Brown

 At one time writing this blog was a great exercise for me- to be able to put my thoughts down about my acting career and reflect positively on things (which many of you know- might not be my strong suit ;) ) But living at home and working at a restaurant in my home town eventually made me start to feel stagnant. The drive to audition and hustle and pursue the dream of a full-time career in performing became less and less. I felt out of touch with the Philly scene because I lived and worked in Jersey. I lost confidence in myself and thusly- lost confidence in this blog. I would think to myself, "How can I write a blog about being an artist when I haven't booked anything lately? What will I talk about? All I do is work now!?" I know this energy is negative and un-productive, but it's how I felt for a long time. And it was starting to gnaw at me. I was negative and not the best version of myself. I decided I was ready to hunker down, save money and make the leap and move to NYC. Why not? I had nothing left to lose. This was about a year and a half ago I came to this conclusion. I was working 6 or 7 days a week and saving money. I was going to do this!

Then I met a guy in a bar. A very handsome gentleman who wasn't at all my "type". He was muscular with classical good-looks and an (unfortunate) bro-haircut. He fell for me hard and fast, and my gut instinct wouldn't allow me to reciprocate. "But I'm going to New York! This isn't supposed to happen! He's so different! Why is he moving like a freight train!?" He said, "I love you." and I politely thanked him. But things happen and my resistance wore down and I fell in love in my own time and on my own terms. But without me realizing it- everything about this relationship wasn't right. He originally seemed so wholly supportive of my career goals. He looked up apartment situations in North Jersey and said he was willing to make the commute for a year or two for me to try out my New York dreams. We moved in together in his house three blocks from my childhood home. It was a crazy whirlwind. And then he started to change. Dramatically. He was distant and moody. The same man who had run a Spartan race and than came home and rubbed my feet after my measly 6 hour shift suddenly became this selfish person I didn't recognize. Naturally, when things change the instinct is to say, "What did I do wrong?" "What's wrong with me?" "Why is the most loving man I've ever met suddenly so cold and cruel?" I became a shell of my former self. He told me that he couldn't handle if I booked a 7 month gig on a boat. He couldn't handle if I went to grad school far away. But we never really had an actual discussion about these things. He just got angry that I didn't want to help paint and decorate a house that I didn't really want to live in.
And then he cheated on me.
And after he cheated, he led me to believe that he still wanted to spend the rest of his life with me. And for that to happen- I would need to promise to be okay with living in South Jersey. And then we'd get married and live happily ever after and put this all behind us.

When someone you love abuses you- it is hard to comprehend. I was sick and in love and desperate- but something inside of me knew that when this man asked me to give up something I've wanted since I was a little girl----that I could not in my heart answer yes.

That was a pretty horrible thing to have happen to me. I wouldn't wish it on anyone. But I am SO glad it did. I dodged a bullet that would have changed my life and caused me nothing but pain and regret. I remember another moment- when I was in the midst of this inner conflict. I am not religious- but I have some kind of frail belief in the Universe. Or something. I'm not sure. But I remember at my lowest asking God (or whatever you want to call it) to not make me choose between my dreams and this man. I remember saying, "Please don't make me choose." And I didn't have to- the choice was made for me. So I truly believe I am lucky. And for good bad or otherwise, I have made the leap to NYC. (Oh yeah and btw I'm in a 1000% healthier, happier relationship. Yay.)

I've been here about a week or so, including a quick trip home to gather more stuffs. Every day has its new challenges. But my stress breakout all over my face has started to heal. I met Jim O'Heir (Jerry Gergich from Parks and Rec) at a bar after seeing a hilarious Broadway play. (GO SEE THE PLAY THAT GOES WRONG. DO IT). I've had wine with friends and struggled at a new job and laughed and cried and I KNOW NOW that I made the right choice. Nothing worth it is easy. I know the struggles aren't over. But I am so fucking happy I'm here.

- A new New Yorker

My buddy Nathan and I out on the town!

So effing FUNNY!

I could get used to this.

Wednesday, December 3, 2014

Gee, how lucky can you get?

Holy crap. Today I am 26 and it feels very weird to say that. I don't know exactly how I pictured what my life would be like at 26. But after a lot of thinking and a tiny bit of anxiety, I think overall I am a very lucky girl. I accomplished some mini goals of mine since my last birthday- I have gone on lots of auditions and gotten new headshots! But when I think back on this year at home... I really realize how much closer I am to my family than I realized. Growing up living in my house was sometimes very stressful and I was excited to get out into the world. Living at home at the moment isn't a backwards step- it has allowed me to save and have a support system at my fingertips. I can confidently say that my relationship with my parents is the best it's ever been. They are two of my best friends. And as everyone is getting older I think this time together has and will continue to be very important.

I also worked my ass off this year and got myself to a place where I am much more financially stable. That's huge. Now I'm not afraid that I won't have enough money for health insurance. I work a lot of jobs, but a few of them are doing what I love- which I think is all anyone can ask for. I spent a lot of time re-connecting with friends who I didn't see much of last year. And I get to perform one more weekend of shows with a cast that I adore that make me laugh til I cry almost every time I'm with them. Gee, how lucky can you get? Thanks everyone. Here's to 26. Cheers.


Backstage selfie!

We're just strange.

Also, I went to the hand doctor yesterday and he checked out my wrist which has been in pain for some time. Turns out nothing is permanently damaged. Just strained. Recommended course of treatment? "Audition more and wait tables less." Thanks Dr. Stackhouse. I mean, hey, doctor's orders am I right??

Dorsal Jazz Hand Syndrome

Monday, October 13, 2014

So...Divorce Is Kind Of Awesome

I am currently in the middle of tech week for my next show, Til Divorce Do Us Part: The Musical at Society Hill Playhouse in Philadelphia. I have been so grateful for this experience and have been working my little tail off. We have our first preview Wednesday (WHAT?) and I'm so excited. It's hitting me that I'm really back in the Philly theater scene and I can't wait for friends to come see the show, and for me to get back out there and see their shows as well and support! I've been very exhausted and at times overwhelmed, but for all of the right reasons. Here are some things I'm excited/anxious about:


- As with my last show, The Marvelous Wonderettes, this show has about twice as many songs as a traditional musical (about 25), many of which are very wordy. The show is almost entirely sung through, so it is a workout for my body as well as my brain. I flubbed lyrics today just because I couldn't get them out fast enough, so it is a challenge.

- I have to make sure I am sleeping enough and taking care of my body to have the stamina to do this 1 hour 8 minute little power pack of a show!

- I'm having nightmares about messing up songs. I know it's just an anxiety dream but still. Nightmares.


- I love rehearsal. Some people love performing more than rehearsal, and while I am excited to finally have an audience, the rehearsal room is my playground. I have felt so supported and alive in the room with our fantastic director, music director, and my three castmates during this entire process. I'm so lucky to be among them. I think getting an audience is going to really help us continue to find moments within the show. Yay moments!

- I'm so very excited to be performing in my own backyard. Most of my shows in the past few years have been in a different time zone. I ran into a friend I previously worked with on the street yesterday and he said he didn't even know I was back in town. Well honey, I AM! I'm really happy that friends and mentors who probably haven't seen me perform in any kind of featured role since college will get to see me in an intimate 4 person musical.

I was feeling stuck for a while. I feel more like myself than I have in a good amount of time. That's due to the show, but also being around some great friends and hanging with my family. Life is good kids.
Dad did the MS Bike ride!

Silly Promo Shoot!

One of my favorite shots straight from the camera from my headshot session with Kim Carson!

Tim gave me a sword. That was probably a mistake.

I guess he was good in The Civil War at The Eagle Theater, so I didn't stab him. ;)

Home for the next two months!

P.S., get tickets at !

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Simple Little Things

   So a quick life update! I've been busy working what is now THREE part-time jobs, trying to save money and decide the next step for my career. I went and saw Mike Birbiglia perform stand-up and got to chat with him for a brief moment. He is absolutely phenomenal and I felt like I was watching a master class in delivery and comedic timing. It seems so effortless, but I know as a fellow performer that there is a lot of craft to what he does. Fantastic, Birbigs.

   The next night I attended Alumni night at my Alma Mater, Temple University. There was a reception before the show and then we were all invited to the school's performance of Hair. The whole event was so overwhelming. Every time I started to get into the beginnings of a conversation another person passed by ,me or tapped me on the shoulder. One of my professors I haven’t seen in at least a year hugged me and spilled my wine on himself. It was so good. There is so much love at Temple Theaters and I am really blessed to still feel like I have a family there.  And my god! Hair was nothing short of phenomenal. Those kids should have been getting paid. They were goddamn professionals. Flawless night of honest to goodness storytelling. Holy crap they were good, y’all. I highly suggest attending future shows. The talent level makes me so proud to count myself as an Owl.
  Afterwards I drove one of my most influential professors home from the Alumni event. I discussed with her my feelings right now, living at home and working three non-theater jobs and how nothing interesting is going on. She said “ It’s nice to do exciting things. That’s great when you’re doing exciting things. But its also great to appreciate the quiet times in your life and the little things in your day to day that make you happy.” I think this is really important. It’s easy to get caught up in defining meaning in your life by doing “important things” what you’re “working on”. Of course it’s easier to encounter a group of your peers if you’re armored with a response of “Yes I am doing brilliant work I have amounted to something” But isn’t something being happy? I spent the past few weekends with people I adore, who make me feel good, appreciated, and fun to be around. That version of me, in those moments, that's the person I want to be. That’s the person I want to bring to the table when I am lucky enough to be working on an acting project. I think that kind of “work”, getting to the root of that self is just as important as finding new material and auditioning and marketing and all that jazz.

Here are some pictures of simple little things that make me very happy and full:

Fun times at AC Beerfest!
New friends at Beerfest. We're DUM.

Wine with Mom on the Patio.

Finding a shady spot.

Best nap buddies ever.

Took a Jamasy selfie at Alumni Night at Temple! #templemade

Mike Birbiglia smiled at me. I can die happy now.

Substitute teaching has its mini-perks when you sneak silly selfies with your friends little brother.

One of my best friend's Chelsea performed last night and was pure grace. Absolutely beautiful and funny and relatable. She's moving to NYC in two weeks. I'm both profoundly jealous and happy for her.

Nary's making breakfast. Jack in his natural state, sans shirt.

Monday, March 10, 2014


Okay kids, time for an update! My New Voices Cabaret was super fun! Zach Wiseley is a baller accompanist and an even ballerer(?) friend. He is more than supportive and we had so much fun. You can check out a video of one of the songs here!

I've been doing alright. Enjoying time with my family and friends and working a whole bunch. Been auditioning and learning about myself every time I do so. The other day I subbed at my high school and got to watched the musical assembly. It brought back a whole  mess of memories. That was the best day of school. Getting out of class to perform all day? What could be better? Seeing the excitement on these kids' faces was pretty cool. I'm glad to see the tradition lives on even after my teachers have left the department. I wouldn't be the performer I am today without that auditorium and all of the things that happened there.

On another note...I always seem to start projects and never finish them. I feel like I have a small case of adhd and I know everyone says that OOOOH SAY YES TO THE DRESS IS ON! Okay. I'm back. I've seen this one. Spoiler: She says yes.

So yes, I am a serial non-finisher. I have several thrift-store art projects that are taking up room in my bedroom but are gathering dust. I got a bass guitar for my birthday in high school, never learned how to play. The piano is still not mastered (damn you left hand!) I have the time to do these things. I just don't seem to have the self-discipline, even though I know they'd be awesome to have in my skillset and save me from loneliness and boredom. SO my new venture- opening my own Etsy shop for vintage clothes and accessories- is very exciting to me. I have always loved finding treasures at thrift/antique stores and estate sales. Curating items for the shop is an artistic act and that's why I'm pretty sure I'm going to follow through on this one. That I can put my hands on it and feel it and see it published on a professional looking website without a crazy amount of work. Heck, I might not make a dime off of it but at least I will feel the satisfaction in my brain that I took an idea I had in my head during that uber creative time between sleeping and waking up for the day (before being bombarded with the worries of life) and turned it into a reality. That's the best time of day for me. I wonder if that's maybe why I love naps so much?

My good friend Veronica and I got free thai tea just cuz we're good looking. I thought it was worth being documented. :)

Daisy is getting involved in Mommy's budding vintage business

Mama Cindee and I at Mamma Mia!

Me and my buddy Kevin Casey, MD for the Mamma Mia tour!

Actor day off

Monday, February 17, 2014

It Just Takes What It Wants!!!

Last week I was in Memphis for UPTA. It is my third time attending the auditions, and my third year out of college. I noticed how different I feel since the first time I nervously did this thing. I sat in the same waiting room I've sat in twice before, but the jitters weren't there. I joked and got to know some of my fellow actors. I crouched down in front of the heater and discussed body problems with other actresses (Because that's what we do. We're women.) I had no problem mentioning that this year I was forgoing the sky high heels and instead opting for the old lady Naturalizer shoes complete with Dr. Scholl's gel insoles this time around. Someone said I was the honeybadger of UPTA. As in "honeybadger don't give a shit!! It just takes what it wants!" I took it as a compliment. But it's not that I don't care! I just decided that I'm too old to try to be someone I'm not, to try to get cast as something I'm clearly not right for. I just sold myself, which is a lesson that takes time to learn. I had some wonderful callbacks and am hopeful that my time as a server will come to an end. (Or at least be put on hold for a while.)  I got to hug some wonderful people that I only get to see once a year if I am lucky. I ran into people I haven't seen in years. And I received a compliment from someone who gave me my first professional job. He said how much I've grown and how my choices in material are better every year. It meant a lot to hear that and I intend on keeping that memory fresh for the next several weeks/months when I continue to audition. I was lucky enough to see three of my dear friends from Little Rock as well and although my time there was far too short I was so glad just to hug people who I really feel I can talk to about anything. Good things.

Tomorrow I am performing as a part of Larry McKenna's New Voices Cabaret Season 3. I'm super pumped. My set is full of sarcasm and dry humor and my laughable love life. You should come. Or at least watch the video when it gets posted. :)

UPTA Mascot

On the Blue Plate Cafe menu. Apparently my wine and cheerios habit is a sin. Oh well. Cheers.

He was seriously considering spraying me. Not cool.

The sweetest little pup in her happy place.

I found my best lady friend!

Poor Sinovia does NOT do cold weather.

This is the only picture I was allowed to take of us being remotely friendly-like.

Monday, February 3, 2014

I Got A Feelin

I'm so excited!! In a matter of days I'm going to Memphis and I get to get out of town for a while and see SO many dear friends I haven't seen in a long time! UPTA has always been such a positive experience for me. It feels like a theater reunion less than an audition. I can't help but smile to think after a day of auditions I will get to see SO many old and new friends. SO many hugs. I can't handle it. BUT WAIT, there's more, you say? One of my best friends is going to pick me up in Memphis and we're going to drive to Little Rock and crash for a few days where even MORE BEST FRIENDS await. I'm one lucky girl. Time for an awesomely long weekend full of friends, drinks, and high belting. What more could a girl ask for?*

Temple Reunion last year! Love these guys.

(*Answer: A Margarita. You can always ask for a Margarita.)