Monday, January 9, 2012

A Great Start to 2012

Hello people!

So it’s been another month since the last entry and needless to say it has been another eventful month in the city.

The biggest news being I booked my first off-broadway mainstage show with the York as the ASM for ‘Ionescopade.’ The show started rehearsals January 2 and has been going great so far! The cast is EXTREMELY talented and the production team is absolutely wonderful. Previews start January 23 and we officially open on February 2 for a month. It felt really good to sign my second Equity contract. I think I have started getting used to the idea of me being a professional stage manager.

The office job is still going on as well part-time which means I am working 50+ hours a week… One would think I was a workaholic? Ha! But it has been good. I love both of my jobs so it’s all worth it.

Being home for Christmas was wonderful. It was just what I needed really; a little detox from the city and a whole lot of family and friend time! And New Years in NYC was a lot of fun. We had a few people over to the apartment and then went to a bar to watch the ball drop on their projector screen. Of course the bar was PACKED but it was a great energy to bring in the New Year!

Outside of the massive amount of work, I have somehow found myself in some sort of a relationship. I don’t really know how that worked out with my busy schedule but it happened and I’m pretty happy about it! (And by pretty… I mean extremely… Lys and Karli are very confused by my change of outlook) So I won’t post all the details here but feel free to ask!

So yeah 2012 has been amazing so far. Everything has fallen into place very nicely!

Hope to see most of you in the city this year! :)

Monday, December 5, 2011

Happy half anniversary NYC!

Hi everyone!

Sorry for the lack of updates! It's been madness here in NYC. I have not had a day off other than Thanksgiving in a long while. Which is a good thing but also makes me lose track of all my personal affairs.

So since my last update....

We closed 'Give A Man A Mask' which felt good. Mostly because I thought I was going to have some time off but think again Stefanie! The York offered me a job as the "administrative assistant" starting the next Monday. So since Nov 14 I've been working in the office here. I helped get the gala together which was the 21st. I met lots of cool people including Cheyenne Jackson, Norm Lewis, etc. Now I am helping around the office with random tasks. My main job has been coordinating the reading series and I've been trying to serve as a main contact point for those staged readings. While I don't think I am necessarily cut out for office work, I have been enjoying the change of pace. So yeaaah been working everyday 10-6. Except for last week which was just hell...

I started ASMing another show called 'Friends and Relations' which is about 7 gay men during the 70's and 80's. I love the show, the cast, the team... but I should never try to juggle a day job during tech week. I was putting in 14-hour days all week last week. How I was still functioning... I have no idea. But we opened the show yesterday and it was great! Wonderful audience and the cast did great!

Other than that, I've been trying to fit in as much NYC Christmas exploration as possible. During my dinner breaks, I am usually wondering around looking at lights and such since the show is down in Herald Square. (right by Macy's, etc) Tomorrow I am going to convince my roommates to go to Rockefeller and some of the Christmas markets near Central Park and Bryant Park And we started decorating the apartment but we're finishing that up tonight. (Pictures will be on facebook I'm sure)

I am counting down the days til I am home for Christmas! I honestly can not wait. It will be so great to be with the family.  Thanksgiving was just not the same without them. I also am so super excited to see some of my friends from home. Only 15 days until Ohio and I meet again. I will be home for 8 days which I think will be the perfect amount of time.

Also today is the 6 monthiversary of Lys and I taking the plunge into the city!! And I  have to say... it feels like it's been way longer than a half year! I think I can speak for both of us by saying this definitely feels like home. SOO much has happened in the past 6 months, I can't wait to see where the next months and years take us!

(I will let Lys update you all in another blog entry. Honestly, I have not really seen her or anyone in awhile just because of my schedule...)

Love you all!

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

(not so) Breaking News!

Hi everyone!!!

It's Stefanie and geeeeezzzz... it has been awhile since I've updated mostly because I've been so busy!

When I last left you I was working on Pride & Prejudice I think... so let's see. That obviously closed it's NYMF run but I think it has a very bright future ahead. In fact, the production won the most awards in the whole festival including "Most Promising!" I absolutely miss it. The people were great, the show was great, and it was just a wonderful atmosphere 100% of the time. I would probably even go so far to say it is the best theatre experience I have had to date!

After that I headed back to the homeland for a week... and it was really great! It was just what I needed. A little escape from the city, but also just a reminder of how much I love New York. I was definitely ready to come back. I really missed my family so seeing them was so heart-warming. (sentimental moment there...)

ANYWAYS! The breaking news... which I guess isn't breaking anymore... is that I signed my first Equity contract and am now officially a card-carrying member! The show I signed with is "Give A Man A Mask" down at the York. (which is where I interned when I first moved out here) And it has been an interesting experience so far.... it's only 2 and a half weeks of rehearsal and I think everyone is feeling very rushed and overwhelmed as we open a week from Thursday! Here's a link to the article about the show for those interested:  Give A Man A Mask- York Theatre Company

Still trying to figure out what I'm doing next... have a few balls up in the air so we will see!

ALSO let me just say going out on Halloween night with Karli/ Black Swan in NYC... was OUT OF CONTROL. So many people, so many weird costumes, so many drunk creepy guys.... but so much fun!!!!

Lys is sitting next to me being beautiful as always. She just got back from a trip to good ol' Oxford. She had tons of fun of course but is super excited to be back in my arms. :) She wants me to leave a plug about her new blog that you all should check out! It's all about her auditioning adventures which are very entertaining. Other than that, she is babysitting, auditioning, seeing shows, and just generally getting in trouble... like always. :)

I feel like there's more but I can't remember any of it right now. So I'm outta here... gots things to do.

Love you all,

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Home is Where the Horns Are

Three AM sirens, the Mister Softee jingle (ice cream truck), being squished between sweaty 40 year old men, walking 10 blocks to the grocery store, and pushing tourists are now all things that make me feel at home. The most common phrases I hear are, “hey do you like comedy shows?” and “There is train traffic ahead of us. Please be patient” to which I want to answer, “You can’t command me to be patient, I have a job to get too!” Oh yes, you heard that right, a job, I am a bona fide babysitter, and by this time next week I will be CPR and first aid certified as well (I also sometimes have anger issues on the subway). Needless to say I babysit 2-3 times a week on the Upper East Side (aka where the rich people live). I take care of Anna who is 8 and Davis who is 12. I feel as though they are my own kids and I do a lot of carting them around.

I am also continuing to audition a lot. It’s a long process, but every time I go I get the chance to perform, which I cherish every moment of (all 2 minutes I get in front of the casting director…or the intern). I’m also discovering that not every person in the audition room is actually mute. The last few auditions I have gone on they have asked me questions! (I have mastered how to answer the question “How long have you been in NY? “ with at least a 1-minute answer). I will shamelessly post my new headshots below too, which I now have lot of expensive copies of!!

When I’m not being an actor or hanging with kids I’m hanging with other actors and seeing LOTS of shows. “It’s research” is what I am telling my bank account!  I saw Venus in Fur on Broadway this past weekend and fell in LOVE with it! About 5 minutes into the beginning of the show, Thomas (Hugh Dancey) is on the phone when Vanda (Nina Arianda) bangs on the only door onstage because she is late for her audition. Thomas goes to open it, can’t, and returns to his phone call. About this time a voice comes on the loud speaker “Ladies and Gentlemen, we are having technical difficulties, we are going to stop the show and resume momentarily”. Can’t have a show if the character can’t get onstage! I loved it---what a wonderful theatre moment! Needless to say, the show resumed, the door got stuck once again, but no one even noticed till the end. Pretty damn good acting!! Also, seriously, come see this show. All of you. You can stay at our apartment.

The past few weekends I have spent in Nyack, NY, which is about a 35-minute train ride upstate. It is such an adorable small town and feels like an escape from the city. I forgot how much I missed grocery stores, riding in a car, quiet nights, and simply strolling without a purpose. I absolutely love the city, but it’s definitely nice to take mini vacations to suburbia!

Stef returned to her hometown this week, Dayton, OH, and I know she loves seeing everyone, but we REALLY miss her here! We are impatiently waiting for her to come home home! And then she starts her new job at the York! Which means there will be a whole new list of songs she will be belting around the house J

So life is great! We even have friends now that we go out with! I’m the happiest I’ve ever been (but will only be happier when I get in a freakin show!!!!) And Stef is becoming successful in what she wants to do and is loving life! 

In Conclusion: A panda and penguin fighting on the subway, is as natural as jaywalking. Dropping socks on the way to and from the laundry mat is as common as 10-dollar cocktails. Getting a nice looking butt from all the stairs we climb, well,…that better happen soon. It’s all part of this wonderful city we call “home”.

P.S I realize that I was quite amused writing this, but reading it over, it’s not nearly as entertaining…Perhaps try reading it in a Russian accent. 

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Stefanie's Long Awaited Life-Update

Hey all!

Geez it’s been awhile… I feel like so much has happened!

I’ll start with work.

Pearl’s Gone Blue won “Best Overall Musical” in FringeNYC which is such an honor and it got picked for the Encore Series where the “best of” go on to perform a few more times. So we had that and it really was a great opportunity to work in a new, bigger space. We closed Sept 20 and it was bittersweet: sad to say goodbye to the show, but nice to have more time. J I was also really excited because my Situ got to come see an Encore performance when she was out visiting! So great having family see your work!

I’ve also been ASMing Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice: A Musical at New York Musical Festival (NYMF) and it has been one of the best experiences. I’m working with a stellar cast, an amazing director, a top-notch stage manager, and just an overall outstanding production team on this amazing show! It really is proving to be a very positive experience. This show is playing at the Signature Theatre (an off-broadway house) and it really is a lot of fun! Recently, we’ve been getting amazing reviews, which has been nice to see that the hard work is paying off! I’ve been making some great friends and it’s really been good to work with Sarah Hall. She’s really awesome at what she does and I have learned sooooooo much from her!  I’ll be super bummed when it’s over…

I’m about to start ASMing Give a Man A Mask at the York Theatre (which is where I interned 3 months ago) And! I will most likely be earning my Equity card through this contract! Very exciting stuff! (For those that don’t know, Equity is the stage managers/actors union.) Rehearsals start Oct 24 and are only for 3 weeks and then a weekend of performances.

I’ve noticed that a lot of people that I’ve talked to in the casts or production teams of these shows are shocked that I moved here only 4 months ago and that I’m only 22. I guess that’s a good thing. I definitely feel like I’ve been here longer and sometimes I feel like I’m way older than 22…. But I think it should be promising to others that yeah you have to work your way up, but you can do it!

Hmmm… what else is going on?

I had my first urgent care visit… that was exciting… Those that know me know that I have a dread for doctors just because I’ve been to so many with different health issues in my life… so it literally took my roommates forcing me to do to the urgent care. And I’m glad I did! I had an infection in my thumb from a bug bite that started infecting my blood and was causing streaking on my arm from the veins getting infected. So as soon as I walked in they pumped me full of anti-biotics through an IV and gave me a prescription. Since then, I’ve been good to go!

We had our house-warming party, which was a lot of fun! All (or most) of our closest NYC friends came over and we just drank and enjoyed the view and our new space! Unfortunately, I don’t remember a lot of the details because my anti-biotics plus the 2 or so glasses of wine I had did not mix well. (even though it was said there would be no issues) But I do remember feeling really lucky to have such a great group of friends that have our backs! And of course it is so great that Karli has been inducted to the group so seamlessly.

There were mushrooms in my room! This is a recent advancement in my life. I got home a few days ago and noticed white stuff sticking out of my wall and floor… and after looking closer realize that there is a mass of mushrooms. I was pretty ticked off today to say the least. The landlord came and fixed it though so hopefully the garden in my room is closed down.

So now I’m home in Jersey with the Cross family! I am definitely enjoying the little escape from the city. I have been working pretty constantly with a day off here and there for the past 2 months so I am using these few days to just detox… and do laundry! I forgot how convenient it is to have laundry facilities within feet instead of blocks… 

Next Wednesday I will be heading back to Ohio for 8 days and saying I’m excited wouldn’t even cut how anxious I am to get home. I’m already packing my schedule full of seeing friends from school and home, family, visits to UC and Miami, and getting my hairs chopped since I don’t trust anyone else with my luscious locks. I realized that it’s been 5 months since I’ve been in Ohio and while that may not seem long for most people, it’s the longest I’ve gone without home. Milo better prepare himself for the overwhelming amount of love and attention. He’s really the only one I miss…. J

As far as Lys goes… She has been babysitting a lot, seeing shows, and out with friends!! Actually we barely see each other anymore… our schedules are pretty much completely opposite of each other. I’m rehearsing usually all day during the day and she babysits in the evening.  I’m jealous of her social life since I barely have time to have one. I have been taking Karli out to explore and such! It’s so great having a third roommate because there’s always someone to hang out with! J The other night we watched Fried Green Tomatoes and had a wonderful movie date night after we did some grocery shopping! I’m sure Lys will update soon with more details about her adventures! She’s been harassing me to get a move-on my life update so she can do one of her own!

I feel like so much other stuff has happened but I can’t really figure it out. There has been a lot of romance updates in our apartment but that’s not for everyone to read on this blog… haha! You’ll have to ask us personally for details!!

Well I’m going to go watch the Apple media event to see what the iPhone 5 is all about… I am able to upgrade whenever I want but I’ve been holding out to see what this madness is going to be. So yeah within the next few weeks, I will be an iPhone owner! (about time, right?!)

Love you all and hopefully see most of you soon!

Saturday, September 10, 2011

Let's Get "Real"

Well, we’ve reached the 3 month mark folks and it looks like NY is feeling more and more like home.  Our house is pretty complete with our stolen coffee tables off the street and a free dresser dragged across 8 blocks to home. Momma Olson came to visit this past weekend and so did Godmother Lisa, which was wonderful and we all had a lot of fun with them! (And now my room looks GREAT with the rest of my things/pictures. Seriously, if we have talked within in the last year it is likely there is a pic of you in my room…or 5…). Only thing is the ceiling leaks still are awful! No worries though, our landlord assures us he is fixing them this weekend.

We’ve been SUPER busy with what I’d like to call “living in the real world”. That’s right, we are poor, and so we must work our butts off like true adults. Stef is currently working on two shows—“Pearls Gone Blue” for the Encore series of fringe, and ASMing for “Pride and Prejudice” for NYMF. She is loving it, but she is literally in rehearsal ALL day, but hey, it’s money, and at least she is doing what she loves. She even got a chance to act/sing/dance this week :P Me and Karli couldn’t be prouder. I have been working the US Open for the past 2 weeks at the Ralph Lauren store. I am a beast at the cash register and I’m making some new friends with the other temp agents. My love for tennis has also grown and I’m seriously considering working in retail. So it’s been great if only I wasn’t having an allergic reaction to the bugs that live in the break area…I know you are thinking, what will she do when this job ends? No worries, I am now working for a babysitting company and possibly a tutoring company as well. Mind you, I am working 9 hour shifts till 12:30 at  RL at night and still getting up in the morning for auditions…it’s a glamorous life.

So I guess the long and short of it is (Yes, I’m speaking in Shakespeare) the real world is stressful and aggravating and hard work.  For those adults that are reading this “Yeah, yeah…we appreciate you a whole lot more and understand you better”. For those of you still in college, don’t be fooled. The hw and tests and papers you are stressing over now are not dependent on your life. Yes, do them, but know in the long run, the stress of the real world is so much more worth it and less petty. So hopefully everything pays off in the end (yes, I mean literally pays).

As always-positive thoughts, prayers, cards, money, and visits are gladly accepted.

P.S Living in NY during the 10 year anniversary of September 11th is both extremely thrilling and scary. Don’t worry, we will stay safe and keep everyone updated!

Sunday, August 28, 2011

Blow, Irene, Blow

We made it! That’s right, we are survivors of Hurricane Irene 2011. While we came out without a bruise, our kitchen ceiling didn’t fair so well. We currently have 5 leaks in the ceiling along with all the windows in the living room. Because of this, we each took 2-hour shifts to stay awake and manage the leaks throughout the night. But we know what you are really thinking…what do you do to prepare for a hurricane and what do you do while you are waiting? Here are our suggestions:

1.)  Buy wine, nonperishable food, and water (in that order)
2.) Keep everything plugged in out of fear that the power will go out any minute
3.) Drink wine
4.) Surf every major website
5.) Have everyone shower in case you lose water, then fill the tub!

6.) Watch the weather channel for 5 hours
7.) Drink Beer
8.) Follow HurricaneIrene on twitter
9.) Skype any friends or family member that is home on a Saturday night
10.) Make up Hurricane Haiku’s

11.) Nap
12.) Cook a deliciously huge meal of everything you can find in the fridge (Stef)
13.) Play the game of Things

14.) Drink Liquor
15.) Make curtains for the living room (Karli)

16.) Iron the curtains (Stef)

17.) Drink wine
18.) Look for a job on craiglist (Lys)
19.) Facebook stalk …well everyone
20.) Document everything you are doing with pictures (and photobooth) while drinking wine

21.) Re-enact risky business on the wood floors (Lys)

22.) Eat more
23.) Have a dance party
24.) Drink Wine
25.) Watch 27 dresses
26.) Complain about how bored you are
27.) Eat more, drink more
28.) Start The Time Traveler’s Wife, but stop because you have to move all the furniture around so nothing gets wet and clear out every trash can, tub, and food container to catch the water
29.) And last but not least, drink wine.  

Note: Most of us were actually not awake for the “direct hit” of the hurricane, but the wind and rain were going strong most of the time! Also, more pics will be posted on fb!