Lesson Seven

Last week I was in Glasgow.
That’s in Scotland (in case you were unsure) and, as a result, there was a significant change in weather from the glorious London springtime I’d experienced the week previous.
Hello rain!
It was easy to reflect on the bleakness of the city and the influence that can have on its people.
It was easy to consider the sturdy Viking folk who often populate my imagination as they conquered the people and the temperatures (which may have seemed warm to them!).
And it was easy to get worn down by the fact that the hour and a half I spent curling my hair and making my fringe sit PERFECTLY before day one of my course was made redundant by the time I reached the venue.


In an uncharacteristically untroubled fashion, I quietly swept that frizzed mane up into a bun, I silently pinned that feral fringe out of my face and I got down to business.

I was in town to learn!
To absorb!
To grow!
And nothing, nothing, nothing
(that’s a quote from a scene in “A Stretcar Named Desire” that I watched a lot over the course of last week!) come rain nor hail nor sleet nor snow, was going to stop me!
… Getting snow woulda been exciting, but alas, no luck…

Why was I there?
A dear friend of mine had told me of an acting course that could shake me up and give me a fresh new approach to my work in the future.
And he was NOT wrong.
It was a week of ups and downs.
Of challenges and of successes.
Of self-doubt and self-congratulations.
It was the rollercoaster of emotional blocks and achievements that such a course should be.
And I loved every minute of it!

Being in another city for the workshop meant that I could focus on it and it alone.
Being away gave such an unbridled sense of freedom and focus – there was nothing else for me to distract myself with and no other plans to juggle.
We walked to class each day and walked home again each night, discussing what we’d learnt, what we’d discovered, running our lines and just being ACTORS.
I know, how boring for everyone else – what wankers!
It felt GREAT!
I felt like I was doing what I’m supposed to be doing.

And so this led me to a new lesson to share with you all…

Lesson Seven

One of my coyotes, Kiwi Bix, has the rest of us ladies in the habit of using a certain phrase:
You do you.”
I took to this phrase like a duck to water.
… But that’s probably because I’ve long had a yearning to be cooler than I am and this phrase helps me pretend that I have enough street cred to say it… and other things… like “street cred.

However, this week, I found a truer meaning – well, a meaning that is truer to me (oh man, I just had another, separate light bulb moment and I didn’t even see it coming! That course WAS good!) – for this expression.

“You do you.”

I mean, sure, it’s kinda what it already means.
But with more of a sense of ownership.
For me, at least…

I am an actor.
Lots of days I get paid for doing jobs that have very little do with that vocation.
Other than the fact I’m acting like I am happy to be there…
But that doesn’t lessen who and what I am.
And last week I was “doing me”.
I was being me.
I was being an actor.
I was an actor.
All week.
No exceptions.
No apologies.
No clauses.
am an actor.

So the lesson is, in the words of Kiwi Bix:
You do you.

Make no apologies for who you are.
You are who you are.
You are who we love.
You are who you are supposed to be.
And if you’re still figuring those things out, that’s you too.
Own it.
Be it.
Do it.
You do you.

And all actors should read Mike Alfreds’ book “Different Every Night”.


Want your life to make sense?
Got pressing questions to be answered?
Don’t forget to ask Rabbit Ash…
Comment below!


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