Saturday, June 20, 2009

busy is good

Dear, whoever is reading this - most likely to be me. It has been approximately two months since my last, this is starting off like some sort of weird confession... segue, GO!
I've been busy! It's been fantastic, post Persephone Youth Tour, I jumped right into rehearsal for Theatre Ecstasis' production of 'Bad Jazz'. For those of you who did not see it, this is where I would put up the 'Spoiler Alert' but since you didn't see it, nuts to you for your lack of support! I kid because I love... mostly...
Never in my wildest imagination did I picture myself on stage being anally rended while singing 'Any Dream Will Do' from 'Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat' in a Scottish dialect - wait for it - ......with my mother in the audience! Talk about supporting your son in his artsy ventures! Needless to say, but I'm going to say it - it was a wild show. It was really great to work with not only Angela and Josh - who have been acting and producing professionally for about a decade, but with Jules and Janessa - who were a year behind me in University. It was a sort of 'I've been there, I'm going there' kind of feeling. Couldn't ask for a nicer group to spend time with. The icing on the cake though, was getting the chance to work with Jim as a director. I had taken two acting classes with him and two directing classes, but had not actually worked on a show with him before. To be able to do that in the professional world was an eye-opening experience. The amount of detail that can be gleaned from a script and translated in to strong choices and character subtleties is vast when someone as experienced and committed as Jim is at the helm is immense. It was like a master class on good acting....or maybe 'Better' acting - that's an in-joke...
After 'Bad Jazz' closed, I had a week off - where I went to the booming metropolis of Swift Current to spend some time with a good friend and to get the Duck out of Fodge for a while. Never did I expect to be waiting in line to pay cover at a dance club in Swift Current... I kept thinking "aren't I better than this?" the answer is no. haha...
Saskatchewan Playwright's Centre' Spring Festival was how I spent my next week. I got to run the sound and lights for all of the staged readings that took place - not my favourite thing to do, but I got to meet some great directors and see some brand new plays test their legs. Most notably, Mansel Robinson's 'Two Rooms". Heart-breaking. Can't wait to see it on stage for real. Also, a play called 'My Rabbi' by Joel Bernbaum was quite good - and I definitely think I will see it again somewhere.
After a two-year absence, I am thrilled to be back at Shakespeare on the Saskatchewan this summer for 'A Midsummer Night's Dream' and 'Antony & Cleopatra'. I am in rehearsal right now and am using this blog to distract me from working on my lines - temporarily.
I'm shooting a movie! I've been asked to play a lead role in a Danish-produced film called 'My Baby the Butterfly' with Zentropa Entertainments. It's going to be about 30 minutes long and be entered in film festivals internationally. I'm really excited to start working on it - we will be shooting during off-days from Shakespeare, so it looks like I'm procrastinating to avoid more than one thing right now.
On that vein, I have two auditions coming up for Persephone Theatre - it would be great to nab one of these ones and spend some time on the main stage.
Last Friday I had laser eye surgery. It was exceptionally bizarre to be awake and aware that someone is cutting a flap off of your eye, zapping you with lasers and then putting the flap back on. Weirder still that you can smell the laser burning your eye tissue... too much? It has been one week, and I no longer need glasses or contact lenses to see - though I still feel like I should be taking them out or off before going to bed.
That's all for now.

Monday, April 13, 2009

imminent uncertainty

There is a wonderful feeling that comes with knowing where your next gig will be.  There is a tremendous low knowing that a show that you enjoy is ending.  It is very exciting and very taxing knowing that you will not be doing the same thing forever.  I just finished up Persephone Theatre's 2009 Youth Tour that took me from Saskatoon to La Loche, Lloydminster, Maple Creek, Gravelbourg, Moosomin, Regina, Cabri, Wakaw, Morse, Martensville and on and on...  We toured two productions - one for high school students called 'Shakedown Shakespeare' - which is essentially King Lear, Romeo & Juliet, Hamlet and Macbeth all squeezed in to 55 minutes and made more than a little goofy.  The other show, for younger audiences is Dennis Foon's ever-running 'New Canadian Kid', which has been produced in many countries in many languages.  I had a blast, the cast was a pleasure to be around and work with.  
I now have seven days off before I start rehearsal for my next project.  I will be performing as Ben and Ewan in Theatre Ecstasis' production of 'Bad Jazz' by Robert Farquhar - which is, to say the least a bit of a jump from children's theatre.  It is a challenging piece of theatre - for me as an actor as well as (I hope) for the audience.  What makes this even better though, is that I get to work, once again, with some of my favourite people.  That's what really makes all of the difference.

Thursday, January 29, 2009

End of January, Beginning of Employment

It has been quite the couple of weeks...ok I realize this is a very oblique way to start to say something, but you're here - you might as well spend some time.  It started where everything email account.  An innocent-looking email from...holy cow, Stratford.  I have an audition in Winnipeg... scheduled for the last week of rehearsals of the Persephone Youth Tour... where we are rehearsing two shows - in which I am involved in nearly every scene.  Can I get the day off?  Long story short, No.  Dear Stratford Audition Co-ordinating Lady, any chance there are auditions on a Saturday somewhere?  Dear, Actor Who Is Going to be a Hassle to Deal With in Terms of Scheduling:  The only Saturday audition we have is in Halifax.  Dear Air Canada and Westjet, Can I fly from Saskatoon to Halifax and back without missing rehearsal?  Dear, Actor Navigating our Websites in and out of Wireless Coverage along the #1 Highway from Brandon to Saskatoon: Kind of, but we are going to whack you with an insane lay over resulting in a 10.5 hour flight which will get you to Halifax by 10:30am - Possibly in time for your audition at noon.  Dear Aaron's Brain, can we feasibly expect to fly to leave rehearsal on Friday, get to the airport, fly to halifax via Calgary and Toronto, arrive 45 mins outside of Halifax, drive to Neptune Theatre, perform an audition that makes the first lady of Canadian Theatre think that you are worth her time and some, fly back to Saskatoon and be ready to go for the opening week of the tour????  Dear, Aaron: Hell if I know...but if you don't go try you know what's going to happen.  
It's a good thing I've been working on some pieces...
Ring!  Come shoot a music video this weekend.
Ring! Come audition for an indie film being shot locally for which the trailer is being shot in the next couple of weeks.
Ring! Can you send me an audition tape of the sides I've emailed you?

Absolutely! Click, click, click.

Aaron's Brain:  Have you looked at your Youth Tour Scripts recently?
Aaron:!  That's a pretty colour!! FOCUS!!!  
Aaron's Brain:  It'd be cool if you got that part, you would be on IMDB!
Aaron: that WOULD be cool!!! FOCUS!!  My Liege, I did deny no prisoners, but I remember when the fight was done, when I was dry with rage and extreme toil.........List a brief tale and when 'tis told O that my heart would burst!  The bloody proclamation to escape that followed me so near (O our lives' sweetness that we the pain of death would hourly die rather than die at once) taught me to shift into a madman's rags.......
Aaron's Shoulder: Look!  I grew a weird hair!!!
Aaron: Hey, that IS cool!!! FOCUS!!  Breathe.....relax....go to bed.  Goodnight...

Sunday, January 11, 2009

Here we are, January 2009!  I have just returned from an incredible week-long vacation in the Dominican Republic with a group of rowdies and am eager to get back to work.  I have two scripts that need some attention Shakedown Shakespeare and New Canadian Kid - both of which I will be performing for Persephone Theatre's Youth Tour with a group of wonderful actors in schools all over Saskatchewan.  I am also working on a couple new monologues for potential theatre auditions.