Jumpin’ July

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We have hit the seventh month of the year everyone! Number 7! I don’t know about you but the first half of 2016 went by like a bullet train. I know the saying goes that the older you get the quicker time seems to rush by, but I’m not that old! LOL

May and June were a whirlwind of activity, dormancy and change.

  • The season finale of Shampagne was released.
  • I produced my first critically acclaimed off-off-off  broadway play (Thanks NY Times)
  • I directed my first full length production (#teachingartist)
  • I did a few readings and an awesome show at ANT Fest
  • Celebrated my grandmother’s 90th
  • Went to the Jersey shore for the first time

Those are the highlights, couple of lowlights too, but no one’s life is all ups all the time, right?

Anyhoo,

July 🙂

New month needs a theme, motivation, quotes and all that jazz. More than that, I realized that by not blogging, I actually wasn’t tracking my feelings either. This space is where I actually get to take a minute, breathe, and tune in to what I want for myself. A place to be honest and right now? I need that.

Cool. July! Here’s to you! May you be hot, steamy, challenging and fun 🙂

Ciao

 

Monthly Motivations

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Better late than never! Who says you need to have your motivations at the top of the month? I sure don’t…this month. Listen, when times get busy it’s in the quiet moments when you have the opportunity to take stock of what’s been happening around you, and what you want to see for yourself in the weeks ahead.

As 2015, begins to wrap up, I have become cognizant of the little things that make my days go with ease, allowing me the freedom to create and appreciate the joy in my days. Hopefully, these little nuggets will push you to tackle that challenge staring you in the face.

Ciao 🙂

MMIA: Melissa Missing in Action

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Hello blog world!

Although I know no one has been on the site for two weeks, I wish to greet you all the same.

Let me start off by saying, I am NOT sorry for being MIA. I take great joy in being able to say that I just have not had the time to sit and post photos, memories, and poems because the whirlwind of web series production has completely enveloped all of my free time.

Not only have I been in Shampagne production world, but add on top of that, my Adler Youth Shakespeare class, That Bachelorette Show, a new class in partnership with Pathways to Graduation, Rising Circle events and duties, and the continued NYU day job shuffle, its been pretty quiet on the NYDreaming front.

That being said, I have now determined I must return to the blog-o-sphere with a flourish! However, I’m not really sure how to go about it LOL.

So, I suppose the solution would be to just dive back in. Sure it’s October 12th, but look up and you’ll find my monthly motivations, and a dance video will be hitting the site this Friday (if I have enough media space. grrrr) Anyway, I am back, even while I haven’t really gone anywhere.

For those who stumble upon the page today, thanks for stopping by. For my avid readers, who have been pondering my whereabouts, welcome back! Persistent and Consistent, that’s the mantra for the year, so back on the blogging horse I go!

Ciao 🙂

Shampagne September

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If you read my Monthly Motivations yesterday, you’re familiar with a term that will pop up again and again over the course of September: Shampagne. This month, Shampagne, will become the thing that I eat, sleep and breathe, I hope.

Guys, creating your own work is extremely difficult. I have been through a roller coaster of emotions and I haven’t finalized the script or shot one second on camera. Last week, I was calling everyone I considered to be a rock, sounding off my frustrations, stress, questions, and unresolved internal dilemmas preventing me from moving on to the next step. Luckily, everyone had a listening ear at the ready and some great advice to dish out and today I can tell you that I am back in the driver’s seat, eager to tackle the behemoth of challenges headed my way.

In addition to the show, I am coming into my own over at That Bachelorette Show at 42West! Last week my character almost made it to the final two, so that signals to me I have really started to come into my own as Mac Jenkins. If you’re in the city I strongly urge you to come to the show, it’s a great party with a live DJ, bar, and some eligible “bachelors” milling around the audience.

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Back to school, means back to the classroom for me as well! Sure I’ve been teaching out on Rikers Island for the past few months, but I’m super excited to meet the next round of Adler Youth 2 students in the coming weeks and tackle Shakespeare once again!

Me and my class

Me and my class (fall 2014)

Finally, September marks new chapters for some of my closest friends, weddings, birthdays, and milestones!

You know the name of the game:

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Gonna keep it going as I take on all the month has to offer.

Ciao 🙂

Frugal and Fierce February

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February has definitely arrived in the Big Apple people! It’s a winter, slushy, snowy wonderland up here. Even while the puddles of doom loom on every street corner and it is a herculean fete to climb the snow-plowed mountains between yourself and the bus, the winter white reminds us all  me that it’s always best to slow down and enjoy the peace and stillness that this season brings.

As far as monthly motivations go, I think the post title is pretty self-explanatory. Frugal and fierce. I love alliteration obviously, but these characteristics fit seamlessly into my new year’s resolution of consistence and persistence. Things are still moving at a pretty fast clip in terms of my career, I will be in rehearsal for two shows starting this weekend, still exercising my teaching muscle over at Stella Adler, and getting the hang of this “writing thing” while developing a new web series. January was filled with nothing but ups for me, and a lot of that I credit to starting the year off right surrounded by family. So, in order to keep that feeling of love and support, my cousin Lauren and I have decided to have a scheduled family brunch the first Sunday of every month. A great excuse to try out new brunch spots in the city, and check in with one another even as our lives become more complex and busy.

As always, I hope that your January was a successful one and that you are still trying to keep to your new year’s resolutions, themes, or goals as we begin the short month that is February. Keep to your dreams and find inspiration in the world around you.

Ciao 🙂

FULL-SPEED AHEAD January

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Whoa boy!

January came in quietly for me and now I am FULL-SPEED AHEAD! I don’t know if my vision board has anything to do with it, whether my focus is finally where it needs to be, in terms of who, what, when, and where and why, or if  divine favor is shining down on me. All I know for sure is that this has been without a doubt a great month for me, teaching, working, acting, auditioning, and broadening my scope in the theatre world, FULL-SPEED AHEAD.

While this post is short and sweet, I wanted to leave you with another quote from The Alchemist this week, to give you a nudge this Tuesday. Let me know if it helps you in or out of your current situation in the comment section below. Have a great day, and do at least one thing today, that will make you proud tonight.

“We warriors of light must be prepared to have patience in difficult times and to know that the universe is conspiring in our favor, even though we may not understand how.”

Paulo Coehlo- The Alchemist

Ciao 🙂

Thursday Thoughts

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Holy Crap, I’m a teacher! It’s my one month anniversary this week and I think I can say, with confidence, that I am now a teacher. Super weird, when you reach those points in your life that you always dreamed about as a kid.

Living in New York? Check!

Finding my way in the world of acting? Check!

Writing lesson plans for actual students and then using them or completely tossing them out? Check!

Before my first day I was excited and anxious, no different from the feelings I had on my first day of studio seven years ago. I knew I had big shoes to fill (thanks Jason) and that Shakespeare and I have a love/hate relationship. I kid. I kid. It’s mostly love, but if I’m going to be truly transparent here: Billy requires a lot of work. Once I got past these fears, walked through the door, sat with my students (!) and absorbed the inspiring words spoken by Adler’s artistic director I knew I could do this.

I’m not going to make it all sunshine and rainbows. My students definitely keep me on my toes: forcing me to always be at attention, adjusting to their needs, listening, creating new rehearsal exercises to get them to the next level, and really learning to be more confident in my own approach as a teaching artist.

Want to know a secret? Ever since I saw the Winona Ryder version of Little Women when Jo inherits Aunt March’s home and turns it into a school for boys, I’ve wanted to do the same thing. Not a school for boys, per se, but an acting school to establish and run in Jackson. Teaching at Adler is so rewarding, so invigorating, and so challenging. I’m glad that I have been exposed to this experience so much earlier than I thought possible. Sure, it still is a little terrifying when I head to class each week, but it’s from the place of not wanting to let them down, or Billy Shakes either, I suppose.

Ciao 🙂