Development/s

posted in: acting, comedy, wrestling, writing | 0

Something a bit more positive to write about today: development, and developments.

I’ve just joined The Actors Centre in London. I hadn’t previously done this because for some reason, in my head I had decided that their workshops and facilities were too expensive. Having spent a bit of time looking closely at the website and the workshops available, not only did I realise that they are actually very affordable, but they cover most of the subjects that I feel that I need to work on.

I’ve signed up for two already – one TV and film audition prep workshop, and one workshop dedicated to helping with line learning . The latter jumped out at me, especially after my previous blog. They have a really good programme all year round as well. I’m pretty sure I’ll be up there a fair bit over the next twelve months.

I think personal development is the single most important aspect of the life of an actor. The more worlds we put ourselves in, the more we open ourselves to other people’s ideas and realities, the more truthful we can be. Personal development comes not only the form of workshops and seminars, but also by expanding our boundaries, and I’m lucky enough to be in a really good place at the moment to do that. Here’s my Facebook status from earlier today:

A few opportunities have found their way to me in the last couple of weeks, and I’m incredibly grateful for them. Last year was a real struggle at this time of year, but I sat down and worked out my finances last week and worked out that I’ve actually earned my monthly target amount for January already. I genuinely feel like I haven’t done any work this month, yet I’ve earned enough to pay my rent and bills. This is the kind of life I was aiming for when I decided to go for it as an actor.

Me dressed as a cowboy, holding a beer
I took this character out to the July 4 BCOM show last year. I’m thinking of turning him into something real… PHOTO BY OLIVER WILDER, ON MY PHONE, UNDER THREAT OF VIOLENCE.

While I never wish to count my chickens before they hatch, a few bits and bobs of regular (yet flexible) work have come my way, meaning that I have a small income that I can rely on for the next few months. This has taken the pressure off massively, and means I can spend time and money on my own development. This is the first time since I started acting that I’ve been in this position.

I’ve also found myself a new wrestling school, which gives me something to really look forward to. I was a little unsure if they would be suitable for an out-of-shape, 38-year-old complete beginner but upon messaging them, they replied; “Of course – we’re here to help, not to judge”, which is hugely reassuring. I’ve managed to keep to my gym routine, so although I am still far from what others may term as “fit”, I am certainly in a better position that I was even a couple of months ago.

The ideas are in full flow too. I’ve got a couple of solo show concepts in mind, and an idea of where I want to get to as a comedian. I’m starting to regain confidence in treading my own path in the world of comedy. I don’t think I’ll ever be a laugh-every-ten-seconds comedian, but I know I can be a strong comedy storyteller. I just need to think about the format a little more.

Right, I better get off to work on some Hove Grown stuff. Oh, and I am working on solutions to fixing the BrightonActors.co.uk castings section too – just bear with me on that one as it’s a little more complicated that I envisaged.

See ya next time.