I’ve had numerous jobs in my time:
I’ve been a shelf stocker at a discount store, glorified babysitter at the YMCA, cashier at a lunch spot/sweet shop, group leader of a socialization group for teen girls with learning disabilities and a burger flipper at a country club that, ironically, didn’t allow Jews to be members back in the ’60’s (I was only at that one for two weeks).
For several years, I was an executive assistant at an insurance company (snooze) and then at a hair care company (free shampoo!). I left the fluorescent lighting and daily desire to stick a pencil in my eye to become a freelance marketing writer for a few years. I wrote copy (at home in my pajamas most of the time) for international companies, mom & pop stores, non-profits, scatterbrained “entrepreneurs,” and independent “inventors” who created some of the most asinine products they thought would make them money.
Acting gigs were woven in among all of those jobs. Plays, TV, film, web series. All incredibly fulfilling and fantastically creative. And always temporary, of course. Nature of the business.
But also woven in along the way – and in recent years, quite permanently – I have been an acting coach and teacher. I am in my bliss in this role as much as I am when I’m in front of the camera or on stage. Possibly even more. So please allow me to say:
Thank you, you wonderfully creative human beings who choose to work with me. Without students and clients interested in evolving as artists, I am at a loss. Without artists passionate about their craft, I have no one to collaborate with.
Without you, I would be eating peanut butter sandwiches for breakfast, lunch and dinner.
But it’s so much more than putting (a variety of) food on my table. Because of you, I get to do one of the things I love almost every day. I get to dig deep into multiple characters; I get to explore and play with gifted artists; I get to collaborate with interesting, vulnerable, courageous human beings who love the same craft I do. I get to work with unique people who trust me with their growth as a human and an artist.
You have trusted me with your talent, fears, hopes, history and future; I don’t take any of that lightly. Thank you for that trust. Thank you also, for your honesty, courage, vulnerability, passion, determination, and creativity.
And thank you for teaching me just as much about being a great coach as I teach you about acting. You allow me to encourage, fail, explore, flounder, demand, create, jump up and down, cheer, belly laugh, weep and play.
You let me grow right along with you. You have taught me to trust my gut, be compassionately honest and to try and try and try again. You have taught me that I can keep learning. You have made me a better coach and a better actress.
I’m not sure you realize how much you change my life and fulfill it simultaneously. I love what I do. But without artists to play with, I have nothing to do. You have made an enormous difference in my life.
I mean this from the very bottom of my peanut butter-lite heart:
Thank you so very much.