I always like to start my blog post with a quote. This week it's “The biggest adventure you can take is to live the life of your dreams” —Oprah Winfrey
I am humbled by the question "What are your goals for this semester?" It feels just like yesterday that I was auditioning in my Mum's blue cardigan (for good luck of course) and clunky black shoes and seeing my name hours later posted on a wall of very few names called back for the day. Terrified. Excited. And blessed.
I think it goes without saying however, that one of my goals this semester is to graduate! To graduate. And to graduate. One more time? To graduate. I came to Juilliard with a lot that I didn't know but with an abundance of curiosity and willpower. I guess one could use the small fish-big pond example. It goes without saying that one experiences so much and overcomes many hurdles at Juilliard. And during this time I think a lot about my family and friends and their hope, strength, and belief in my dreams and goals and how thankful I am to have come this far with their guidance and support. I'm glad to say my goals for this semester are to enjoy my final moments of being a student at Juilliard and relish my last experiences, scenes, plays, and classes. I'm excited for what's to come and ready for it. I am very proud of everything I have achieved and overcome thus far. Especially facing the challenges of being an international student. I feel ready to face the world and privileged to be in a position of health, surrounded by excellent artists and now to be a classically trained actor.
So what exactly are my goals? We are often told by our acting teachers to be specific, so here they are.
1. We open Queens by Martyna Majok directed by Tyne Rafaeli in two weeks and go into tech on Monday. This play is beautifully written and it is an honor to tell these stories about two generations of immigrant women and the challenges they face. In addition to this, staying focused is very important right now because the rep schedule has varying challenges. It's a big feat for the department to organize! For us as actors this means rehearsal rooms will change and rehearsal times too. We have to create consistency within the shifting environment. I have to say however, that after nearly four years of routine I'm kind of enjoying not always having a schedule. How strange?!
2. To enjoy the Silent Retreat in the woods! I have no idea what this entails, although I've heard it's about reflection —and I've heard it's wonderful!
3. To solidify my Showcase scenes, head shots (all that jazzy business stuff) and to enjoy our trip as a class to L.A.
4. To finally get my play Leilah read by a select handful of actors and friends from the Drama Division in April.
5. To graduate, of course. I'm extremely excited to experience my first-ever graduation and have my family celebrate the honor with me. I could not have done it without their encouragement, love, and belief in my talent and dreams. And of course, a big thank you to the excellent teachers that surround us all at Juilliard.
I leave you with another Oprah Winfrey quote.
"The more you praise and celebrate your life, the more there is in life to celebrate."—Oprah Winfrey