Actress in training

Sometime I feel like a star, the world just doesn’t know it yet.   There is nothing wrong with being a work in progress – in which case today was a important first step.   The day started with a visit to my excellent vocal teacher, Tenesha, at the White Hall Arts Academy.  Tenesha played a large role getting us ready for our singing, dancing wedding extravaganza last year.   Back then I learnt that while I am fine with public speaking, I not quite as good at public singing.   I never got over having my voice drop about 20 years ago.   Today’s goal was not just to work on my voice, but also  my stage presence.  I moved from the sound booth to the dance studio where I worked on owning the stage with my movement, building energy with my entire body from my hips to my hands to my eyes.   With some luck, I am hoping to perform a Caro Emerald song (see my earlier post) at a USC drag show later this fall.

However, I didn’t have to wait that long to test out my new ambitions.  After class, I headed straight to a Hollywood recording stage to play a part in Austin Young’s latest extravaganza – “TBD – the musical“.  TBD is an interactive art project that takes the stories of regular folk (like me) and weaves them into a cohesive story about coming of age.  Today’s theme was teenage crushes set in a rustic campfire setting.  I will leave it to Austin to describe it better:

I really didn’t know what to expect but everything was a blast.  Phranc broke the ice with some macramé (!), and old camp songs I had forgotten that I knew.   Austin did a great job of taking a fake fire, fake trees, and fake stars and creating a great intimate atmosphere where we could share our tales of love, rejection, and growing up.   I spent over 10 years camping as a kid, but I don’t remember there being that much great gossip.  Kids can be mean and gossip leads far too often to abuse.  Today I learnt that even abuse can make for a great story later on.   Every crush is just a stepping stone to bigger better romances.  Finally, Phranc helped turn all our stories into a song (it is a musical after all).   Even if I’m not ready for the main stage, I will always be willing to sing around the (fake) campfire.  Hopefully there will be more video and pictures from this project soon.


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