I have written before about personal growth and pushing oneself in order to grow. This has been my mantra and so far I feel that I have been doing this.
After completing my first acting course (Acting Level 1) last summer I could really feel how much I had grown. During Acting Level 2 this winter, I noticed that I was now often the first to volunteer for an exercise – this was the complete opposite of my first course where I was afraid to make a fool of myself. The end goal of this level was to perform in scene in front of friends and family. Mine was a scene from “The Prisoner of Second Avenue”, the scene where a husband and wife find out that their apt has been robbed.
When I first received my scene I was terrified as I had never done anything like this before and was also was not very good at memorizing lines. My partner in the scene, Grace, was quite worried when I had mentioned this and our teacher for some reason had given us one of the longest scenes in the class. For someone who has had to overcome an inherent shyness in front of large groups this was a extremely daunting task!
At our first practice session, Grace had most of her lines already memorized and I had barely memorized the first few – I was very worried. You are essentially exposing yourself in front of so many people when you perform. Gradually over the two months my confidence grew. I was very proud of myself when I managed to learn my lines and was “off book” within a month. Next came the actual acting and moving around the stage “the blocking”. I never realized how hard it would be to combine everything (similar to singing and combining a choreographed dance routine). Gradually my confidence grew and I was able to let myself go (more than usual) and not be afraid to experiment. It was very liberating!
Rehearsing and watching myself grow was extremely satisfying and so much fun as well. I can really see how people could get the acting bug, challenging with lots laughs and rewarding when you can finally perform the scene. I can honestly say it was such a high when we performed, the adrenaline rush was amazing.
I think I am forever changed after this – and for the better. I have been able to face so many of my fears and accomplish things I would never have thought possible. I am hoping to be able to use this new found confidence in all aspects of my life and encourage others to face their fears as well.
Personal growth and facing fears is so rewarding …