Entry 10: Showcase

Thank you.

I could talk about my experience with showcase for a full blog. I sang. I never thought I would have the courage to get up in front of a crowd in New York City and sing a song. But I did. And I actually felt good about it. There are a couple different things in the works from showcase and I am excited to share more about that in the future. 

But since it is my last blog for the internship period of my life, I wanted to take this time to thank each and everyone of my classmates for the last four years. The past four years for me has been an incredible time of stress, excitement, frustration, and discovery. I have found a consistent family in 12 other people. I want to take this time to highlight every single person in the Class of 2017.

Evan Moore-Coll  
Everyone knows that you and I have been connected at the hip since nearly day one, but they don't know how true this friendship is. You are not only my best friend, my classmate, my partner-in-crime, and my go-to director. You are my brother. We have gotten each other through a lot of stuff, but no matter what, we keep each other upbeat and ready to go. I will never forget the moments we finally got to do scenes together because working with you was the most fun I have ever had as an actor. Thank you, my friend. 

Asel Swango 
I have told you numerous times that you are the greatest dance partner I can ask for. Equal parts fearless, funny, and sincere, you know how to make the most out of any scene or dance that is given to you. You float, Asel. You have made me a better choreographer because I want to keep creating things to showcase you. You never cease to bring your wonderful self into every single monologue, scene, song, and dance. It's an honor to know you. Thank you for making me better. Thank you for being my friend.

Connor Allston 
What is certainly a joke by now is my unending love for your rendition of Adele's "Turning Tables."  But it was one of those rare moments that you can directly look into an actor's soul. You were incredible and still are. It was an honor to see your journey in acting class and with it all culminating with John Proctor. It was one of the greatest moments of my life to share the stage with you in one of my favorite plays as you completely immersed yourself. Also. You're a nerd. One of the coolest nerds I have ever met. Thank you for sharing all of your comic book knowledge and geeking out over Batman and Power Rangers with me. 

Madelyn Loehr
MADDY! It was incredible to see you for showcase! Thank you for getting me to try vegan food because I really enjoyed it. Watching your grow over the past four years has been one of the coolest things. You were absolutely breathtaking as Elizabeth Proctor and it was an honor to share the stage with you every single night as you shined. Your showcase package was so incredibly fun, natural, and Maddy. You are going to be a TV/Film star and I am so excited to say "I know her!" Onward to awesome things, you yogi queen! 

Alex Armesto
I miss you, man. You are an incredible theater maker. Your high energy, passion, and talent never ceases to inspire, confuse, and push me. I have enjoyed every moment of improv scenes because who knows what you are going to do next and you are so goddamn funny (it's not fair). It's an honor to see your work and to pick your brain about where theater is heading. Don't forget that we still have to create our two-man comedy special. I have been thinking about it a lot. Get here soon, man. You are going to change the face of theater. 

David Buergler
A wonderful human being with a wonderful voice. You saw how each and every one of us are awestruck anytime you sang. Ghost bumps, my friend. You are going to make waves, not only vocally, but you are going to be an amazing teacher to the next three generations of theater artists. Those kids are going to get the greatest education from one of the most generous human beings. I am so proud of you. I will always remember that baseball scene from Freshman year. So much love. 

Jenna Miller
One of my favorite moments of showcase is the strut up those stairs and then giving no f**** for a minute and ten seconds as you did a piece that means a lot to many people and YOU JUST HAD FUN. That's all we can ask for. That's the thing I love the most about you. No matter what, you always find the joy behind the material. I loved doing that scene from Suburbia and I loved seeing the growth in your voice throughout our years in college. Keep having fun. Theater needs that more than anything right now.

Aubree Tally
You were the first voice I heard from this class after the phone calls were made. Your interpretation of "Shake it Out" was so beloved in Ev and I's room and it meant the world to me to get your blessing to use it as my drag show swan song. You are incredibly versatile and I cannot imagine anyone else playing every role that you have done. You are an absolute delight of a person. You are one of my favorite people to see because hanging out with you is always a fun time. You are so undeniably you. Your comfort in your own skin has always inspired me. Thank you, Aubree. 

Luke Stewart
Ah. My drag sister who continuously sings the highest of notes. You are an incomparable force of vocal prowess. You and I have always had a strong connection. I will never forget so many moments with you: The Crucible before freshman year, the Friendly's dinner afterwards, that first night in my dorm room, our rehearsals for our Drag debut, watching your growth in studios, and finally sharing a hug after our swan songs and just talking in the apartment afterwards. Now I am thankful for these long talks we get to have in the rectory. I am glad to have you in my life. You are going to have a fantastic career and a fantastic life.

Dana Cullinane 
You are a terrific human being with a giant heart, a huge voice, and a visionary mind. I am continously shocked by every single performance you give. Your genuine warmth as a person is so incredible. Your laser focus is awesome to watch. Every choice you make feels fresh and exciting. THAT VOICE. I have been always appreciated every wacky moment of your friendship, Dana. You are one of the most caring people I have ever met. You want the best for every single person. In return, I want the absolute best for you. You are going to be a star. No doubt in my mind. 

Lauren Kent 
You were my first friend at Otterbein. You are an incredible soul that continues to show me what true strength is. I have told you before that you are going to be the person that people will want to build shows around. You can handle anything from a serious and brooding teenager to a quirky college girl to a woman with wisdom way beyond her years. You are such an amazing collaborator, choreographer, singer, dancer, actor, human being, and friend. I am so thankful for your constant friendship, your jokes, and I am so so so excited to see what you accomplish in your life.

Natalie Szczerba
Wow. You are a fantastic light in this world. Your talent, grace, and humility is a constant source of inspiration. What can I possibly say? You are one of the greatest people I have met and I am so glad you are in my life. You pushed me more than anyone to sing. There are so many incredible moments that we have shared and it all started because you were the first classmate I talked to. I will never forget that awesome summer of OST and seeing you absolutely own the stage during The Fantasticks. You have been continuosly growing in every single role and I will never forget your turn as Marian in The Music Man. The person that I saw during Showcase was a confident and self-assured woman who had worked her ass off to get there. I am so freaking proud of you. 

WITH THAT. 

We move on to life as professionals. Coach used to say that we need to change the American theater. There is no other group of people I trust more to do that than this wonderful group of people. 

So to the BFA class of 2017, 

Much love and kick ass. 

Family. 

Family.