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The best place to find advice, analysis, and information on demo reel services Los Angeles, whether for actors, singers, dancers, journalists, or anyone else with an interest in promoting themselves.

Dance-tress Acting Up: Insecurities, Nerves and Butterflies

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Butterflies, Butterflies, Butterflies!

I'm positive there were butterflies in my stomach all last week. Luckily for me, they're gone now. But, truth be told, a lot of it was all in my head. 

I was lucky enough to film a couple reels with some friends last week. This was something that has been on my to do list for a while now, and I finally had the opportunity to make that happen. You know me and my check lists, can you imagine the amount of gratification I felt as I was crossing these off the list? Yeah, awesome.

First shoot was with Darwheezy himself, and the other was with some friends over at Relentless Filmworks. For the second shoot, I had a little over a week to get everything prepared- learn my lines, put wardrobe together, chill out, etc. This was more than enough time, maybe too much. As each day passed and it became closer to the shoot date, the more nervous I got. 

"What if I suck?"

"Maybe I should have started working out sooner?"

"What if the other actor outshines me in my own scene?"

"What if I've been given all this time, and STILL can't remember my lines?"

Oh, zetus lapetus! (ha, who remembers that one?) no wonder why there were butterflies procreating in my stomach. I was worrying wayyyyy too much. I actually worried so much I ended up with some lovely stomach cramps for a few days prior to filming. My level of confidence was all over the place. Yes, I've been acting in a ton of my own projects, but it has been a really long time since I have had the opportunity to work with other professionals and just to be honest, the lack of opportunities I've had lately has made me incredibly insecure in my own abilities. I mean, there has to be a reason why I'm not working, right? Could it actually be because I'm not as good as I thought? I know I'm not a stick figure, but could it be because of my weight? Or my semi ethnic looking facial profile? Blah, there I go again. 

Luckily, I'm friends with both Steve and Troy at Relentless Filmworks, and the actor opposite of me (Kevin Ryan Sweeney) coincidently happened to be an old friend of mine, so it was a pretty comfortable set. Whew. Thank you jesus, I needed that.

Regardless of why you're not going out for auditions, most likely for reason out of your control, you CAN NOT TEAR YOURSELF APART. Trust me, I know, this is very easy to do. I will definitely work harder and look into a mirror next time.

So the moral of this story is, calm the F down! Chill the F out! We are all here for one another and ain't nobody's poo don't stank. We are a team and we need each other to grow together. Have confidence and be the best you can be.

Gosh, I'm so lucky. Just wanted to say a quick thanks to everyone who has helped me out! 

Dance-tress Acting Up: IAWTV Awards/NAB

Hayyy, I'm back! In case I have another lazy few weeks, feel free to stay up to date with all of my fun exciting shenanigans on the tweeter and InstaG

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I know I know, I've been slacking a lot lately with my writing, but it's officially time to get back to business. 

A few weeks ago, I was lucky enough to head to Vegas for a few days to support two of my boyfriends web series that were competing at the IAWTV awards (International Academy of Web Television). It's like the Emmy's for web series. The festival is less than 10 years old and is growing each year. I also happened to be co director for Episode 1 of "The Gambit" which is stinking cool. Also, nominated was "Grayson Earth One: The Boy and the Bullet".

We didn't win anything, but we all had so much fun. I know this is going to sound incredibly cheesy, but we were all just really excited to be there. And the best part about it was that a good majority of our actors were able to be there with us to celebrate. I mean, come on, its Vegas!

Top L-R: Coco Dallons, Me, Jack Cullison, Katy Young, Group (Everybody and Hisonni Johnson, Genaro Marzan), Raj Bhavsar + another film maker I don't know his name from Brazil, another group including Jabari Gray, Raj, Jono Cota, Stephen McCain. Hope this wasn't too confusing :)

Top L-R: Coco Dallons, Me, Jack Cullison, Katy Young, Group (Everybody and Hisonni Johnson, Genaro Marzan), Raj Bhavsar + another film maker I don't know his name from Brazil, another group including Jabari Gray, Raj, Jono Cota, Stephen McCain. Hope this wasn't too confusing :)

Yes, award shows can be boring, but I was SO impressed with how well put the show was. They opened the award ceremony with a musical comedy which was actually really entertaining. I admit, I was expecting to see a giant boring flop, but I found myself smiling and laughing the entire time. Actors from various web series were chosen to present awards for each category that was up for an award. This was especially cool because a few cast members from our shows were presenting. And, to top if off, the entire show was streaming live on the web so everyone who wasn't able to attend, could be there with us in spirit. Bonus! So high five to everyone involved in putting the show together.

NAB

Coincidently, the award show happened to be in Vegas at the same time as the NAB conference (National Association of Broadcasters). We didn't attend any panels or workshops, but it was semi-cool to check out the new equipment and gadgets. I'm not really techy kind of person, so one room of gadgets was enough for me. I was ready to go. If you're into new toys, then this is the place for you! Sound equipment, lighting, camera, etc it was all there. 

Just wanted to share with everyone a little what I've been up to. Stay tuned for next weeks blog. Feel free to send me your exciting news as well, I look forward to hearing about it. Ciao 

Just being silly as usual 

Just being silly as usual 


Dance-tress Acting Up: Breast Matter

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Now that I have your attention, please read.

Pictures, classes, auditions, workshops, pictures, classes, auditions, workshops is just the everyday norm of an actor in Los Angeles. Sometimes we get so caught up in our daily hustle that we forget what is really important. For many that is family, happiness, and health.

As usual, I was scrolling through my Facebook news feed the other day and I came across a GoFundMe from one of my old dance friends. We danced together in college as well as on stage at Disneyland. Nothing kills me more than curiosity, so I clicked on the page and my jaw just about dropped to the floor. My friend was diagnosed with breast cancer. The procedure that she would have to undergo could prevent her from having children of her own. Therefore, the GoFundMe page was set up so that she could crowd fund to have her eggs frozen.

This hit me pretty hard.  I can't even tell you the last time I had a doctors appointment. Just until this year I was without insurance. There is no difference between her and I. This could be me. Doesn't matter how old you are or your level of fitness, this can happen to anybody at any time.

First thing I did was make a donation. Second thing I did was ask her if it was ok to write about it in this blog. Third thing I did was make an appointment to have a physical. For those of you who like to hate on Obama care, think again. Yours truly is very grateful for it as well as the many other people who deserve healthcare. Not only in this business do we have to stick together, but life in general. It's hard enough, I can't imagine doing it alone.

So next time your studying lines remember to take a break and be thankful for all of the wonderful things that you have. Life can change at any minute. If you are interested in making a donation, or even help spread the word, everything is appreciated.

*The next day my coworker announced her stage 2 malignant melanoma. Have I proved my point yet? Classes are important, but so is your health. Don't forget about mental health. Feeling a little stressed and overwhelmed? Take a break. You deserve it. 

See you next week on "Mingle Monday"

Dance-tress Acting Up: Tips from a Casting Director

Hey kids!

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You guys, I am so excited to share this weeks blog with you. I want to talk about a seminar I went to the other day, "Self- Management for Actors", hosted by multi-hyphenated writer/casting director/producer Bonnie Gillespie. First of all, it was FREE! Um, what? Nothing is free, but here was Bonnie taking 2 hours out of her day to share boat loads of information with everyone. Why, because she genuinely wants to help, and I believe her. I can't even find a free few minutes to make AND eat a sandwich.

...is living her dreams by helping others figure out how to live theirs.

It was also exciting to see the person whose blogs I've been following for a while now. A real person exists! Did I mention, she's hilarious. So, not only was I able soak up a ton of free information, I got in a few good laughs as well.

While standing on the side of an over packed theater, I had this interesting "deja future" (er?) sort of moment. I felt like I was watching my future self chatting it up on stage to an eager audience full of actors. Is that creepy? I don't know, but I felt as though I caught a glimpse of what my life will be like in another 15 years or so. She started out as an actress, then ventured into writing and eventually into casting. Well, that sounds semi familiar already. She has also written a few books and you guys know about me and my bucket list, that's #51. 

Because yours truly is also here to help, I want to share with you some of the things that caught my attention. The very first thing I have written down on my handy dandy notepad is "LA starts with a 'YES' ". What does that mean exactly? It means that everyone who wants to pursue a career in entertainment can pursue it. Everyone is welcome. It's up to you to put all of the puzzle pieces together. Are you willing to make a few sacrifices? Are you persistent? If you believe you can, you can. Hallelujah! 

Our main focus was on the 4 steps every actor should follow.

1) Branding- Who are you? What is your type? How do other people see you? For example, if you are normally percieved as "snotty and upper class", then own it. Rock your type and be damn good at it. Don't try and stretch to something that you're not. Be you. She said that if you're, "always type cast as the b*tch...cash that check".  If not, I'll cash it for you :)

2) Targeting- There are approximately 600 casting directors JUST in Los Angeles. Not everyone will specialize in your type. So, make a target list.

3) Creating your own content- Oh snap, I'm already there. Did you get a chance to check out my latest music video?  

I know, I know. Another shameless self promotion, but hey, I'm SO close to reaching my goal of 1k views. Then, one million :) Ain't no thang.

4) Pitching- Yeah, this one can be tough. How do you sell yourself? This is not the time to be modest. This is your chance to brag and share your talents with the world. Obviously don't be over the top with it, but if you don't talk about it, nobody knows. Maybe one day I'll have those mind reading powers, but for now, speak up!
 

Hopefully this will help give you a good map to follow. For more details, you can always follow her on her website. Carry on my friends, until next time!

Dance-tress Acting Up: Self Promotion

Good Morning, World!

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Congratulations Actor! You've taken your career into your own hands. You made your first project and it took a great deal of bravery and guts to jump into a whole new ball game. Ah, where do I start? I've never done this before? I don't have any behind the camera skills, but you spent countless hours of your own free time studying this new beast. The feeling of completing a new project is ugh-mazing. It feels like Christmas morning and you know the gift you've been begging for is under the tree just waiting to be opened. You can't wait to share your success with everyone. Your project is complete, now you're done, time to take a nap and go about the rest of your days. NOPE..here comes the fun part, promoting.

So, you share it with your friends and family. Maybe you post it on Facebook once or twice. But, the struggle is, not everybody gets online everyday, so perhaps those people will never see it. Or, so many other people have made posts within that hour, your project may get lost in the crowd. 

Let's remember the blog I posted a few weeks ago when I talked about how casting directors cast people who have a strong following. A low view count on a video means you are not getting seen, therefore, you're still not building a following. If you are just looking for new reel footage, or to practice a character, then great, but you will not be "discovered" by someone just randomly deciding to click on your video. 

Here's what I have been doing. Has it been working, yes, maybe, I think so, I don't know. I have linked my twitter and Facebook together so that I don't have to post on each site. I can post whatever I want to twitter and it will automatically post on Facebook. BAM, its that easy. I have also been scoping out people who may have an interest in my video and sharing it with them. For me, it's people who enjoy comedy, women film makers, actor friends/non friends, people who I have donated to their projects, people who have supported me, and to be honest, when someone I don't know randomly send me a direct message asking if I can vote for them in a contest, I reply with a "sure, can you retweet this video for me?" and then the favor has been returned. You know what else is kind of cool, because I have been posting so often friends who I haven't spoken to in years have seen my video, commented, and even helped me on my mission to reach X amount of followers by sharing it on their pages. Because of that, I have also been extended into their network of friends and gaining new followers. How cool is that? 

On the flip side, posting the same video every so often, many people can consider this spamming. They may even block you. So, I'm reaching out. What do you do to market yourself and your videos? How do you share it with like minded people and people who you believe would be a part of your audience? Help me, help you, GO!