Why You Must Never Settle // Guest Blog by Kimberly Vaughn

Kimberly VaughnVulnerability and power feed one another in the more meaningful work we accomplish, both in class and on stage.

By comparison, physical posturing, vocal gymnastics, and affected story telling fall short and allow the actor to hide, to play it safe.

At times, we can play it so safe, so hidden, so protected as to be almost completely separated from our humanity, and consequently not remotely exciting or memorable.

We hide because we are uncomfortable with being vulnerable—with being real. Real can be scary. Hiding is safer.

It is an act of courage and determination to be vulnerable and completely honest about what the lyrics and libretto mean on a more deeply personal level.

For example, how does it feel to be forbidden to see, spend time with, live with, and wed the love of your life? It is the actor’s responsibility to excavate until one’s own visceral understanding of this “imprisonment” is experienced and then lived in the moment.

And, if we know this, then the question becomes: How consistently do we call upon ourselves both in our auditions and performances to breathe our own personal history into the character?

It is a privilege to touch foot on any stage, and undeniably the Broadway stage.

To consistently challenge ourselves to be three-dimensional storytellers is imperative.

Ultimately, it is the actor’s lookout to never settle for almost! Anything less than deeply human is unacceptable.

To be ready to die for your beliefs, your family, your lover is to be profoundly vulnerable, and there is inherent power in this vulnerability.

To “play” at being powerful without accessing your vulnerability is playing it safe, and often results in two-dimensional storytelling.

Playing it safe is not our journey as storytellers. Risking and daring to push beyond our comfort zone is. When we choose to dig in, unearth, and reveal that which we carry with us historically (our personal history), we are at once unique and our journey is ours alone instead of a predictable variation of those who have come before us.

And, there is no longer competition because no one else has lived our particular history but us. We must strive to connect to our personal history—for ourselves and our audiences. This is where our work lies. This is our sacred task as actors.

Be proud of yourselves for what you have accomplished and consistently challenge yourselves to be more vulnerably human and present in your work going forward! Therein lies your authentic power.

To your success!


KIMBERLY VAUGHN (teacher, director, writer, producer, performer)

Kimberly Vaughn is the Founder and Artistic Director of the Kimberly Vaughn Performance Studio in New York City, which offers classes and one-on-one coaching sessions that encompass musical performance audition technique, and monologue and scene character and text analysis and interpretation. Kimberly also conducts master classes with leading casting directors and agents.

Her credits includeFaculty: adjunct at Circle in the Square Theater School; Director: The Sea Horse, among others; Producer: Tony-Award nominated Marlene; Performer: Constance Wilde in Dear Oscar on Broadway; Writer: CANADA, the musical. Kimberly is a member of The Dramatists Guild, Stage Directors and Choreographers, AEA and SAG-AFTRA, among others.

Find out more about Kimberly via her website or send her an email. Find out more about CANADA via lordtommusical.com.

Don’t have a plan? Make one!

Plan

Have you ever wondered how everyone does it? How everyone achieves their goals in life while you always seem to lose focus? Well, there is a simple answer: Make a plan!

How to make a plan

While the answer may be simple, the execution might not come easily to you. If you aren’t a list-making aficionado like me, you might not even know where to begin. And even if you are, it is easy to get buried in an avalanche of to-do lists.

First of all, take a pen and paper and about an hour of your time. Don’t worry about losing that hour even on a busy day, it will make you much more efficient going forward. Trust me, I’m German. 😉

Step by Step – DAY BY DAY

Make a list of everything you want to achieve in life. Yes, everything! Whether it is getting into a BFA program, being on Broadway as Eponine, retire with a million bucks in your account or finally tell Jeff how you feel about him.

Then choose your priority. Yes, singular! Don’t kid yourself by making a list of priorities… pick one! Don’t worry. This doesn’t mean that you can’t be with Jeff if you make audition prep your priority, it only means that he will not be on top of the list of your efforts. Sounds harsh? Well, to be honest, sometimes life is harsh. And to get where we want to be, we need to make decisions. To quote Greg McKeown, “We can do anything but not everything!”

And then…

…you make a step-by-step plan on how you to achieve your priority! This plan may consist of different to do lists and it is easy to lose sight.

Let me help you with making your plan with a healthy dose of Capricorn rigidity and German efficiency. 😉 Simply send me an email to reserve your spot for a FREE 45-minute strategy session. We will make your plan in a personalised 1:1 session via video chat. Please also note that appointments are subject to availability so don’t wait too long. And everyone who recommends a friend is in for a special surprise.

Get a Head Start on your Audition Prep with Izzie’s Strategy Coachings!

strategyHey everyone! Welcome back! Did you have a nice summer? Did you recharge your batteries? I really hope so because I most certainly did.

I am so psyched and thrilled and I want to share my energy with you to give you a head start on your audition preparations.

Free strategy coachings

You are preparing for BFA auditions but have no idea what to do first and where to start?  You aren’t any good at planning ahead? Well, there is no way you can do it alone and there is no need to either. Let me help you get a clear view ahead with a healthy dose of Capricorn rigidity and German efficiency. 😉

Send me an email quickly to reserve your spot for a FREE 45-minute strategy session. Please note that appointments are subject to availability so don’t wait too long. And everyone who recommends a friend is in for a special surprise. 

What you’ll get

In your strategy session, I’ll help you find out what YOU need to nail your audition process. We will brainstorm together in a personalised 1:1 setting via video chat. Sounds cool? Well then, get typing. Be there or be square! 🙂 (Your parents are curious? No problem, just bring them along to your appointment.)