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The ‘oh shit’ moment

This week, I don’t have an article. I don’t have another person’s writing to analzye, to dissect, to challenge; I merely have my experience and how I encounter the craft I’ve chosen to study.

This week, I commenced rehearsal for a show within the School of Theater in which I’m performing. I walked into the rehearsal space with a profound trepidation to delve into the creative work that constitutes acting and, after nearly 3 years, I felt completely and utterly out of touch with the person that entered the door of the vine ridden CFA building. As Nina so aptly puts it in The Seagull, “I didn’t know what to do with my hands.” I didn’t even know where to begin, didn’t even know how to start ‘acting,’ a craft that the past three years of my training has revolved around. Clueless. Foreign.

I’ve been thinking a lot about that moment and what I like to call an ‘oh shit’ moment. The deer in the headlights feeling, the fight or flight, the crippling fear that captivated my body and made me question the stable and sturdy foundation this program has provided me with; it shook me.

Comfort. It occurred to me that somewhere along the lines that word had entered my peripheries until it had somehow embedded itself in the fringes of my mind. Lately I’ve been reminded that this craft is not for an individual seeking comfort and stability. That illusion of comfort that allows me to fall back on a false sense of security when approaching my work was shattered walking into that room. The older I get, the easier I find it is to fall into that trap; the easier it is to sit on my high horse of comfort and unknowingly refuse to let myself encounter my craft like that first day, with an open and spongelike heart.

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