Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Come Closer...

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Recommended Reading/Viewing:

Closer by Patrick Marber
Closer (the film)
Marber Plays: 1: After Miss Julie; Closer; Dealer's Choice


Earlier this month, I started rehearsals for one of my very favorite shows: “Closer” by Patrick Marber, the season opener for my theater company The Seeing Place. The show stars company members Erin Cronican (me!), Brandon Walker, Nick Velkov, and guest artist Elyse Fisher, and we are already having an amazing time creating this production!

At this point in the process we’re still doing table work -- talking about the situations that the scenes present and discussing some of the character work we’ll need to do to make the play gritty and real. It’s been really interesting for me. When I brought this show to the company with the hopes of producing it, I chose this role because I thought it would be very different from myself. After all, this character cheats on two different men in very painful ways, so I thought it would be interesting to get into the mind of someone like that. As we’ve started the table work, I’ve realized just how similar that character is to me in more ways than one. It’s amazing to me that we often have the same thoughts, dreams, and needs as people who do “bad” things. The question is - what will it take to make someone act out against what’s expected of them? It’s been fun to talk about what might drive someone to do the things that Anna (my character) does.

Next week, we start with breaking down the scenes and determining objectives and what kind of elements we’ll need to create artistically to make the characters believable. A lot of this will be done through improv, which will allow each actor to go deeper into the scene to find meaning and create a life beyond what is on the page. Within a few weeks, we’ll have the play memorized and will start layering in our accents (we’ll all have British dialects. Mine will be a slightly relaxed version of RP, the men’s will be Estuary, and out Alice will be a slight more refined version of Cockney.)

The show open September 21 and will run for 3 weeks, closing October 9. More details can be found here.

But that’s not where my work ends - I’m also producing this show, which means it is my responsibility (and that of the company members) to bring in funds and inspire audiences to attend. We have three amazing fundraising campaigns planned, all full of fun and merriment for those who choose to partake. Our first campaign is a fundraising party, which is being held July 23, 2011 in Astoria, Queens at 9pm. $5 cover gets you access to free food, a raffle, a tarot cards readers, advance season tickets, and $5 cocktails. Plus, I’ll be there, making a fool of myself, as usual. The event invitation can be found here.

If you cannot be at the fundraiser but would like to support our season, might you be able to make a $5-$10 donation online? Producing theater is extremely expensive - and on July 25 we have to write a $2000 deposit to the theater space. Every little bit helps - you can make your tax deductible donation by clicking here.

I’ll be writing more posts with an insider look at the rehearsal process. I’ll be sure to share some of my successes and struggles, and answer any questions you might have about producing and acting in such an intense show. I am excited about sharing this with all of you!

PS: How do you like the poster image? Designed it myself! :)


Have a comment or question? Leave it by clicking below!

Erin Cronican's career as a professional actor and career coach has spanned the last 25 years in New York City, Los Angeles and San Diego. She has appeared in major feature films and on television, and has toured nationally with plays and musicals. She has worked in the advertising & marketing departments of major corporations, film production companies, theater magazines, and non-profit acting organizations. For more information, please visit http://www.erincronican.com.


Tuesday, July 5, 2011

3 Things That Inspire Me: Vol 1

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I've been following an amazing blog, The Simple Dollar, for a while now - and I wanted to share with you one of my favorite features: Ten Pieces of Inspiration. Each week, writer Trent Hamm talk about 10 things that inspire him to (quote) "greater financial, personal, and professional success." I get so gosh darned inspired by his posts that I thought I would create my own "inspiration posts" in homage to his great work. So, without further ado, here is my first edition of "Things That Inspire Me."





#1 - Taking Photographs

Tequila. Another favorite hobby.
Not many people know, but I am nearly obsessed with photography. Obsessed enough that I refuse to buy a good camera and I practically ignore my point-and-shoot. Why? Because it is the one activity that can pull me fully off track from my commitments - indulging in the craft of photography is just that alluring. Observing the world and trying to capture it one picture at a time may be one of the more inspiring things I do. Sharing these photographs, particularly through groups & contests on Flickr, creates an immense amount of time suckage that my running of two businesses (career coaching and acting) can’t bear. But I do try to sneak in camera time every so often. My newest obsession is my Hipstamatic app on the iPhone. Click here to check out some of my photos...


#2 - Public Displays of Affection

Adorable.
Especially by older folks. (Seeing the scene above inspired me so much I took a photo.) I get inspired to tears when I see love and tenderness in the world. Today I walked past a homeless woman who has a baby kitten in her lap. The kitten was lying on its back, and the woman was absentmindedly stroking its belly. The kitten was in heaven, and I imagine the woman was getting some well deserved intimacy from this little being. If you take the time to look, you’ll find all kinds of inspiring displays of affection around you. (Though, I admit, you might also find people sucking face in a way that inspires you to curse them.)


#3 - Killing a Mosquito Indoors

I swear, the mosquito was THIS big!
I know this seems counterintuitive, considering this is an “inspiration” blog - but hear me out. I am one of those people who is like an ice cream float to mosquitos. They can just suck on me all day long to the exclusion of all others. I’m not kidding -- and the welts they leave are gargantuan. So, you can imagine my horror when I discover that one has entered my abode. One lone mosquito can make for many sleepless nights and several itchy limbs. Even though I have a college degree, run two businesses and have raised a dog for the last 16 years, I still get bested and outsmarted by these little buggers. So, on nights like tonight when I see the mosquito, I stalk the mosquito, and I successfully squish the mosquito -- you’d better believe that I run around doing the happy dance, singing, “Go Erin, it’s your birthday! Go Erin, you’re awesome!” If that’s not inspiration, I don’t know what is...


Do you have a hobby that inspired you? Do you find yourself taken in by what you see in the world? Do you experience an insane amount of glee when you get rid of a pest?


Have a comment or question? Leave it by clicking below!

Erin Cronican's career as a professional actor and career coach has spanned the last 25 years in New York City, Los Angeles and San Diego. She has appeared in major feature films and on television, and has toured nationally with plays and musicals. She has worked in the advertising & marketing departments of major corporations, film production companies, theater magazines, and non-profit acting organizations. For more information, please visit http://www.erincronican.com.



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