So...first post. This is always awkward. To whomever may stumble upon this humble little journal: Hello! This is my second journal. My other one is open to all of my friends and classmates. I don't want them to know that I have this, for if they could see that I aspire to be on stage they would probably laugh. Or talk about me behind my back. I don't know which is worse. This journal is going to be all about theatre. I need a place to gush about things like Sondheim's work or how amazing Donna Murphy or Raul Esparza are, since I'm sure my friends are sick of hearing about me talk about stuff like that.
I guess I should write a little introduction, so I won't seem like a complete stranger. My name is Ashley(yes, it's, like, the most common name ever) and I'm a rising sophomore at NYU. CAS, not Tisch. Potential Sociology major. And it's gotten to the point where I feel like my life is already passing me by. Probably not a good feeling to have at age 18, is it? I need to be more "Our Time", less "Old Friends". I love how people automatically assume an NYU student going to the theatre is a student studying acting. I've been asked if I'm a performance major twice- once by a kind man at the box office at the Barrymore (when I bought a ticket to see Company alone. On Valentine's day. Pathetic, isn't it?) and once by Brian Dennehy at the stage door of the Lyceum Theatre after Inherit the Wind.
I guess I really began to fall in love with theatre in high school. All of my new friends (I had just moved from CA to VA) were into theatre. Well, they loved a couple shows. One of which was Phantom of the Opera. My mother brought me the cast recording so I'd have something to talk about my friends with. I didn't absolutely fall in love with it. My mother took my sister and I to see Les Miserables later that year, as she wanted to see it before it closed, mainly due to the whole Christianity aspect. Yet again, I didn't fall in love with it. I did get goosebumps during "One Day More" and the "Finale", though. I still do, even though it's not my favorite show. Sometime between Les Miserables and my second show, Phantom of the Opera, which I saw a year later, I got the cast recording of RENT. It was at this moment that I fell in love with theatre. Now, I'm not a complete RENThead. I've seen the show once, the movie, twice. But I just fell in love with the cast recording. It was at that moment when I broke away, for the most part, from what my friends were listening to. They loved Jekyll & Hyde, and I was trying to get my hands on as much work of Jason Robert Brown's as I could find. I got a recording of Into the Woods shortly thereafter- my first Sondheim show. Since then I think I've exceeded them in my love of theatre. Recently, after having seen Sweeney Todd, Company, and Follies (Encores!) I've been on a complete Sondheim kick. In my humble opinion, the man's a genius.
Before high school I had some exposure to theatre, but not a lot. I've seen the film version of The Sound of Music a ridiculous number of times, as my mother absolutely loves it. I never want to hear Annie again, since I heard it so much in elementary and middle school. I had a friend in fourth grade who loved Phantom of the Opera, and, in fifth grade, my teacher tried to get the class to sit through a taped performance of Cats. That didn't go over so well. I was in a Y.M.C.A. production of Peter Pan when I was eleven. I played an Indian. My job consisted of watching the smaller children, sewing patched onto costumes, and painting scenery. I did not enjoy it then, as I wasn't really given an option and I knew no one, as I had just moved to California from Pennsylvania (my father is in the military, by the way). My friends in middle school were all drama kids. They always made the school plays. Of course, all you had to do to make the plays was know the drama teacher well. She gave her tone deaf son the lead in the school's production of Hello Dolly!. We watched a video of the show in band later and I felt awful for him, as we all sort of laughed. I auditioned once, having decided last minute and having never taking voice lessons before. I didn't even make call backs. Of course, I was a band student. It's not like I could have taken drama if I wanted to. My mother wanted me to be in band, so I was in band. I am supposed to be the one who gets a high profile job and makes money, while my sister is allowed to take acting lessons and get head shots and go to auditions.
I'm setting a lot of goals for myself. I tend to do better when I actually bother to set goals. I'll post a full list later. I guess I'll just use this journal to write about my progress and my fears, set backs and great moments. My current goal is to get a good summer job so that I can pay for dance and singing lessons. Hopefully all will go well.
Well then, until next time!