mercredi 30 novembre 2011


I am alone in a hotel, in Lancaster, PA. My sister has an interview for medical residency, and the hospital put her up (as they always do - it's part of the interview process). I tagged along, since Stephanie needed my car to go from Bethlehem to Lancaster.
Long story short, I don't really want to leave. This space is perfect for productivity. I used to dimly understand why some writers did their best work in hotels. Now I completely understand . No distractions, non-oppressive silence. And... hotels are some of the only places left that give you a pen and paper without having to ask for it. By the way, when I open my coffee shop/theatre (wherever and whenever that may be), there will be free pens and letter-head paper available for anyone to jot down ideas, write a personal note, etc. There will, of course,  also be high-speed internet and plenty of plugs.
That's it. I gotta go. I will try to transfer some of that productive vibe to my own house. Or maybe I'll end up in a coffee shop for the day. But I will get things done. I will! I will!

samedi 19 novembre 2011

Growing up

I have started interviews with artists in the Lehigh Valley to create a podcast. Other than the fact that I apparently can't help blowing in my mic when breathing, the interviews have been going well. I will be posting them on a separate blog, as i think I mentioned before. This will take some time. I need to edit, and write more content before releasing the recordings.

But what I really wanted to talk about here, are the ways I have already been emotionally stirred by speaking with my first two guest artists, Lindsay Shaefer and Bill George. They took the time to share with me the hopes and struggles of creating art. That is, as it turns out, powerful stuff. Life led them in places that they never suspected - whether geographical or emotional spaces. And what transpires from both interviews is that they simply kept on going. Sometimes catching their breath, making a pause, but never stopping. A little bit like when you're dancing tango: if you put the weight on both legs, you're immobile, dead. But if you keep the weight on one leg, than transfer to the other, then back again - even if you're not moving on the dance floor, you're still dancing. You're still alive.
I am, as some of you know, still searching for the whats and hows and whys. I am not currently making theater, and as much as I'm okay with it right now, I know that it's going to come back to bite me. Making this podcast reveals what I want to do, which is to keep exploring.

Although I am still young - 25 is hardly senior - I am sensing shifts in myself, as if I were entering a new phase.  This new phase is not represented by any specific event, but rather a general feeling. I am able to draw from the tiny experience I do have, which is new to me. It's a new feeling to think "this has happened before, slightly differently, so I can deal with it more fully now". It's strange to look back at my time in England and Ireland and Paris, and even my apprenticeship at Touchstone Theatre, and realize that those times are past. It's  new to have the responsibility of 33 students, at least 5 years younger than I am, teaching them French. It's a new fear to think that if I stop dreaming and carrying the dream I have had since I was a kid, that dream will, in fact, die. It's a new responsibility to know that, if I choose to, I can be heard. I have fewer and fewer youthful excuses to tie me down, and more and more respectability tensions to cut through.

That, and I have a bad tendency to rationalize my decisions, to be self-deceptive. If only I could  get rid of the self-deception...
Procrastination is the more obvious syndrome of my self-deception, and it prevents me from being alive in the tango sense. When I deceive myself, both legs are on the ground, and they weigh tons. I am starting to be aware of the extent of this inability to move forward. I am starting to understand the patterns I created and have been following my whole life. And I have this blurry feeling that I can do something tangible about it.
So I am trying to wake up earlier every morning, to have time to work on class stuff and on personal stuff. I don't pressure myself as much at night, and I try to go to bed earlier. These are baby steps, but steps I had never taken before. Not really, not systematically. My computer is no longer - ever- in my bedroom. I am creating boundaries, because I know myself a little more than I did before.