BFF’s release: June 3

Tara Karsian and Andre Grano are the funniest women I know.  They are also smart, humane and are terrific film makers.  Their movie BFF’s is being released June 3, 2016 on iTunes, Amazon.com, Time Warner Cable and more.  Watch as they try and promote their film (caution there are some F bombs:)).  I’m also in BFF’s if you need any further incentive.

Argh imbed not working, please click on link below.  You won’t be sorry.

How to promote your movie.
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Liberation!

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The audition process can be a soul-sucking journey through hell. At least it was for me. Worrying about what I did or didn’t do in the room to get a role took up a tremendous amount of space in my life. Trying to make sense and take control of the nonsensical and uncontrollable was a maddening exercise in futility. But then one glorious moment it all changed and I didn’t waste one more moment on “why.” I have told this story so many times someone suggested I write it down. If this could help one other person it will be worth it.

When I was in my late 30’s, I was being considered for a series regular role on a very funny show. It came down to me and another gal. My final callback for the network had the lead man in tears. Seriously, he was laughing so hard he cried. The other gal may have been terrific, but she was a foot taller than the lead. So I knew I had the role. I knocked it out of the park, I was the right size and they wept. I was clearly the choice.

Turns out I didn’t get it. I was stunned and deeply saddened. I wracked my brain trying to figure out “why. “ In the middle of me raging against God, the producers called and offered me a recurring role. This was going to be substantially less money. And I would have to watch someone else play my part. The part I so desperately wanted and thought I deserved. Did I mention I made them cry?

I needed the money, so I sucked it up and said yes.

This was a multi-camera show. The process involves rehearsing for four days and then performing for a live audience on the fifth. Normally, I love being on stage watching rehearsals even scenes I’m not in. The whole journey of creating a show thrills me.

But not this time. I drove to the studio that first day dreading it. I walked in, said hi to everyone, congratulated the actress who got my part, ate a bagel and was shown to my dressing room. After a few minutes a phone call let me know the first scene was being rehearsed and I wasn’t needed. Ugh. This is normally when I would head to the stage to soak up and enjoy all the other performers doing their thing. So I had a big talk with myself and said, “You are either going to be a part of this and enjoy it or waste an entire week being miserable. What do you want, joy or misery?”

I decided I wanted joy. I girded my loins, walked down to the stage and sat in the audience.   They read through the scene and then they started to block it. I watched like St Paul on the road to Damascus with scales falling from my eyes. I suddenly saw that I didn’t fit.   No way would anyone ever believe that I was a member of this family. It WASNT’T “my part.” I wouldn’t have cast me.   For whatever intangible reason, this woman, who was a foot taller than the lead, really seemed like his wife. She fit! I didn’t. I was an outsider. Which was exactly the role they cast me as, an awkward unlikeable outsider.

I felt like I was walking on air I was so relieved. I didn’t suck, I was not a bad actor, I simply wasn’t “right.”

I had loved working on that sitcom. Every time I was lucky enough to be on the show I enjoyed the hell out if it. It was funny, the people were terrific and it was extraordinarily well cast.

After that experience, I never second-guessed an audition again. There ARE things you have no control over. And even though on the page you may seem perfect for the role, it doesn’t mean you are. There are so many variables that make someone right or wrong for a role and 90% it has nothing to do with your ability.

My happiness as an actor grew exponentially that day. Now – this does not mean I don’t occasionally suck at auditions or that I’m never upset when I don’t get cast. But it does mean I no longer doubt my ability or agonize over “why.” I have been liberated from that misery for about 15 years.

I wish you the same.

Dinner With Friends – EXTENDED!!!

dwf-webOh, it has been a long time since I’ve been on stage. I think it has been at least 7 years since I did Inside Private Lives at the Fremont Centre Theatre. That show was a wild ride that involved controversial characters from the 20th century confronting and interacting with the audience. Each character appeared solely on stage and dealt with a dilemma directly with the audience. Some of the material was scripted but most of it was improvised. I played Aimee Semple McPherson alone on stage armed only with my research and a fantastic costume created by Kate Bergh. It was terrifying and liberating. At one point, we had been invited to participate in San Fransisco’s Fringe Festival. That audience wasn’t having any of my God talk or my weird hairdo. I eventually threw my bible, fell to my knees and screamed at God and them. They really liked that. Boy did I want to quit.

Well, I’m back on stage and this time in a scripted play, with other characters, safely performing behind the invisible fourth wall. However, I haven’t been in a play in over 20 years! 20 years! How is that possible?

Luckily, the play is the Pulitzer prize winning Dinner With Friends by Donald Margulies. It is a well written investigation of love, marriage and relationships. I get to play with 3 other incredible actors: Pete Gardner, Mary Manofsky and Michael B. Silver. The house is small which allows for greater intimacy. Rehearsals have been fun and intense. I think this will be a special night in the theatre. If this sounds like your cup of tea, try to catch us in this extremely limited run: February 27 & 28, March 6 & 7 at Stuart Rogers’ Theatre (AKA Theatre Tribe)5267 Lankershim Blvd in North Hollywood. The only way you can purchase tickets is through brown paper tickets.

MORE DATES ADDED, DUE TO DEMAND: MARCH, 13, 14, 20, 21, 27 & 28!