Monday, May 19, 2014

A Beginner's Guide to Living An Actor's Life.

Hey Abyss,

Today marks my second week living in Toronto. Time has already flown by; today and last night were really the only moments that I have let myself enjoy. I went out for sushi by myself last night and had a great conversation with the waiter and the musician who was playing there. I always underestimate the pleasure one can get from eating alone, simply taking in the flavours and the ambiance. Restaurants work hard on creating an environment for their customers and rarely do I take it all in. It was wonderful.

Today is Victoria Day, and I woke up feeling like it's the best time for me to get myself back into a much-needed routine. That is one thing that I find myself missing from school, the routine. I didn't have much time to myself there, but everything was structured and planned out. All I had to do was fit my life into the time slots. Over the last week I have slipped into some negative states and fallen back into some old habits, I simply need to find structure again to pull me out of this pool of ooze.

Now comes the challenge.

I have been thinking about what is important to me: maintaining my craft, staying on top of my game, and dominating when an audition comes along. I am fearful that all the work I have done over the last 3 years will start to melt away if I don't stay on top of it. I simply need to establish self-discipline and start to manage my own time, easier said then done.

Ain't nothin' to it but to do it.

It's weird, I have felt on vacation for the last week and only now is it starting to sink in that this is my life.

On Thursday, I got a job as a dishwasher/line cook at a locally owned restaurant 2 minutes down the road from my apartment. I have put in 2 workdays already and am working all week starting Wednesday. It's 40 hours a week, and only evenings and weekends (this is the perfect schedule to accommodate my audition schedule). I am really stoked to be working again and I am surprisingly really enjoying the simplicity of washing dishes. It's constant work, which makes the time go by quickly. Cool people surround me and let me work in silence, if I choose. I feel this job, will help me achieve serenity and allow me to focus inward rather than constantly being in a state of performance and accommodation to those around me. I think it will be a nice foil to my acting life.

I am still babysitting, and thoroughly enjoying that. Both of these jobs offer me something completely different and require me to use very opposite skills. I love it. It has been a while since I have felt this content. I know that everything is where it should be. I am poor, but that’s only temporary. I am alone, but that's perfect; I am excited for the next opportunity to act, which is exactly how I want to feel. I need to revel in this simplicity and embrace the fact that this is what I have been wanting for a while. I do have a lot of friends here, but I have been transplanted into their lives and I understand that it will take a while to merge our lives together. At the very least, I know that I have a support system, which makes me feel safe and happy.

I had a wonderful meeting with my agent on Thursday. It was super chill and casual, which allowed me to confide my fears and desires to her. I left that meeting feeling ready to step into battle. I know that our relationship is going to be stellar and I cannot wait to see where she takes me. I just have to loosen my grip on having control over my career, as we need to work together. People that want the best for me, who are able to be candid and supportive surround me. I feel blessed to have found these people and really want to be around them as much as possible. Not only do the give me great advice, but they teach me how to fight for what I want.

On Wednesday, I have an interview for the SummerWorks Leadership Intensive Program and am very excited. I would love to be a part of the program and need to focus on nailing that interview. They only take a limited about of people, and knowing that I have made it to this round is encouraging. It is a program that specializes in leadership within the arts and has a large focus on the business side: how to produce work, how to market that work, and who to market it to. All the while, being introduced to mentors and the juggernauts of the Toronto arts community. All of this excites me immensely.

I feel my positivity growing as each day passes, and I love meeting new people. These last few days have really restored my faith in humanity and that is awesome. If you put out positivity and honesty you can only get it back. It is helping me to be more authentic with my needs and myself as a young man. There is so much to see, eat, hear, love, dream, and experience right now; I want to do it all. And right now, I can.

Night Abyss.

P.S. If you haven't already heard All the Wrong Reasons will be released on DVD via on June 23rd, 2014. Depending on your area it might vary. Make sure you look for yours truly :)

Blackbird has yet to have a release date, but you can always check it out on iTunes.

Saturday, May 10, 2014

Toronto: New Beginnings

Hey Abyss,

The moment I have been waiting for the last few months has finally arrived; I am a graduate of The National Theatre School of Canada and the world is my oyster! I feel like anything and everything is possible. I am over the moon with the education I received, which is represented by a little piece of paper, and I am ready to put it into action.

I graduated on Sunday afternoon and left for Toronto early Monday morning. When I arrived in Toronto around 5pm my good friend Lisa helped me unload my rental car and run some errands before going out and having my first official meal as a Toronto resident. On Tuesday morning I had to drop off the car and make it downtown before 11am for an audition. My audition was for the role of Pugsley Addams in The Addams Family Musical, which will be playing at Neptune Theatre in Halifax next year. The night before I had made sure I was prepared for anything they might throw at me.

I walked in knowing all the sides, the whole song and another song in case they asked for something more in my range. I had monologues in my back pocket, had warmed up immensely all morning and my teeth were brushed to perfection. I get in the room and all they wanted to hear was the first half of the song 3 different ways. I nailed them all and was in and out in 7 minutes.

First Toronto audition completed.  

That night I started babysitting for a good friend of mine. Her daughter is a typical 7-year-old who asks questions constantly and can divert a conversation like its an Olympic sport, especially when it has to do with homework or going to bed.

Wednesday, I spent the day with a new friend talking about acting, intermittent fasting and manly things while I ate my first sundae from Baskin Robbins. 

Thursday, I spent most of the day procrastinating by scouting out jobs in my area. 

Yesterday I woke up early and dressed to the nines for my interview at Bell Mobility which cost me $65 to cab to because I missed the bus to take me to East Jesus nowhere. It was only after the interview that I realized I could have saved that money by taking the subway to the end of the north line…

It wasn’t until this morning that I actually cleaned some things up and started to actually unpack some boxes. The issue is that I have essentially no storage for all of my things, oh and I don’t have a mattress yet.

It’s not coming until Tuesday.

So I am currently sleeping between my bathtub and a hole in my bed frame. I am not getting much sleep.

Also, I’m dehydrated like a no ones business.

Rereading what I just wrote I understand why I am so exhausted. There is a part of me that wants to do nothing but sleep for the next 3 days.

Oh wait.

I don’t have a mattress (sorry Mom, I know it’s coming).

The other part of me is still in productivity mode and is relentless in hunting for a job. It wouldn’t be so much of an issue if I didn’t have two rents to pay for next month, as my Montreal lease ends on July 1st and the sub-letter that I have been in contact with is still waiting to be contacted about his credit check. Once the company has the time to get that processed he can move in, which we both desperately need to happen.  

Last night and today has been my only, sort of, breaks. I basically come home and stalk Facebook, Tumblr and Pinterest while reading about the November launch of the new Pokemon games

Exciting, I know. 

I have been eating like crap, so I finally went out and bought some groceries today. 

With my change of scenery, I want to make some new recipes. I feel like I have been making the same meals for the last 3 months and my palate is getting bored.

I am taking a moment to laugh at how much I hate being in transitions and am currently sputtering to get out of this one.

My end of month goal is to have a job, that way I can at least start paying off the debt I have accumulated while moving, also I'll be able to breathe a little more. I can start to budget and organize myself and I can drink my skulls weight in whiskey and smoke those cigars that I have been carrying around since my last birthday.

Graduation was wonderful and I was so happy to have my Mom, my Aunt and my Grandmother come to see me walk across that stage in that Loro Piana suit and my Little Mermaid lapel pin. There has never been a moment that was more mine. Those three women are my biggest supporters and I felt so blessed to be able to hug the three of them in my moment of glory. All my hard work had led up to that moment and Prince sang those gates open.

Despite this stressful blip, I am over the moon to be here. Next week is going to be a great one, I am sure of it. I simply need to get myself realigned and refocused on my health. I have another interview on Monday and am meeting with my agent, which is very exciting. I am anxious to figure out what our trajectory is for the year. On Friday, I have a friend from Halifax coming to visit me and we are going to have a blast. I am excited to share the little bit I have seen of this city with her.

I have big plans for this year; once I’m rooted I will dominate. The ball is in my court, finally, and I am going to fight to get to the top, while making great friends and mentorships along the way. There are a few leadership programs I am waiting to hear back from, as well as some auditions that I have had over the last month. I am trying to send out positive vibes and have the brightest outlook, as this is the start. If I can get a solid footing, the rest will be cheesecake.

Okay, I need some water.

Night Abyss.