3…2…1…Happy New Year!!!

A fun shot from my summer shoot with Jody Christopherson of PFA Photo!

A fun shot from my summer shoot with Jody Christopherson of PFA Photo!

Can you believe it’s already 2018?! This time last year I was just embarking on my quest for “alignment” – literally adjusting my spine to bring my body back into alignment and metaphorically focusing on having my actions align with my goals and priorities. What a ride!

This year, I’m going to focus my energies on “accountability/account-ability.” In September I left my longtime survival job (10 years!!) at the Red Cross which means that now…I am an Actor. Period. It is terrifying and terribly exciting to have the privilege of spending ALL of my time pursuing my dreams. I want to hold myself accountable to remaining open to opportunities whenever or wherever they knock, while also learning to better manage my literal accounts and challenging my abilities in new ways. I have no idea how this new chapter will end- I’ll keep you posted!

What are you hoping to focus on this year? Shall we help hold each other accountable?? Reach out and let me know <3

One thing is certain though…

Rachel: the Musical is BACK!! I’ve been helping to develop this piece, about the life, struggles, and triumphs of writer/environmental activist Rachel Carson, since 2015 with sister-brother writing team Jessie and Jared Field and director Ari Laura Kreith. And now we have TWO opportunities to continue to develop the story this month and share our work with the world! I hope you can be there. Take a look:

JDT Lab at Guild Hall

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We’ve been invited to the John Drew Theatre Lab at Guild Hall in East Hampton, Long Island, NY to workshop a new draft of the musical, which we’ll then present as a work-in-progress public staged reading. This version builds upon the discoveries we made during our production at New York Summerfest this past August. Here are the details, in case you’ll be in the area:

DATE: Monday, January 8
TIME: 730pm
PLACE: 158 Main St. East Hampton, NY 11937
COST: FREE!
RSVP: just click HERE!

Union Congregational Church

Union Congregational Church in Montclair, NJ, has invited us to perform what we develop at JDT Lab in their beautiful space!! We’ll spend the intervening weeks rehearsing and committing the updates to memory, and then head to New Jersey to mount the show for a new audience.

New play (or in this case musical) development is my FAVORITE thing to do as an actor, and it’s so wonderful (and lucky!) that we’ve been given the opportunity to present Rachel at each stage of its development. Here are the details:

DATE: Fri. & Sat. January 19-20
TIME: 8pm both nights
PLACE: 176 Cooper Ave. Montclair, NJ 07043
COST: $12-$30
RSVP: just click HERE!


2017 Highlights

Played Priya in Rajiv Joseph’s “The Lake Effect” at Geva Theatre Center in Rochester, NY, directed by Pirronne Yousefzadeh, and also featuring the talented Neimah Djourabchi and Clinton Lowe.

I won my first “Oscar”! Well…I won an Oscar pool for the first time haha.

Recorded my first video game, “Modern Combat: Versus” – if you play it, keep an eye out for my badass avatar Revolv!

The indie “A Woman, A Part,” in which I had a scene with the wonderful Maggie Siff, premiered at the IFC Center!

My first understudy gig! So proud to have been a part of Martyna Majok’s “Cost of Living” off-Broadway at Manhattan Theatre Club, directed by Jo Bonney.

I actually finished my run streak!! I successfully ran at least 1 consecutive mile every day for 1 year, rain or shine, in sickness and in health.

Aditi Brennan Kapil’s “The Displaced Hindu Gods Trilogy” was published AKA my name is printed in a play!

Played 10 different characters as part of the ensemble of “The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time” at Mixed Blood Theatre, directed by Jack Reuler, and featuring an amazing cast.

Posted in News

Hello (again) from Minneapolis!

A fun shot from my summer shoot with Jody Christopherson of PFA Photo!

A fun shot from my summer shoot with Jody Christopherson of PFA Photo!

 

It’s wonderful to be back in the Twin Cities (even if winter is already here brrrrr…)

I’m so grateful that the inimitable Jack Reuler keeps bringing me back to my theatre home away from home, Mixed Blood, to keep telling beautiful stories! I’m here this time as part of the ensemble of Simon Stephens’ The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time, based on the novel by Mark Haddon and directed by Jack Reuler himself.

If you’re in the area, please join us – we open ONE WEEK from today and it’s going to be a really special show. Details below!

 

 

About the Show

Curious

MacGregor Arney as Christopher Boone, photo by Rich Ryan.

Christopher Boone, a young man on the autism spectrum, sets out to investigate the bizarre death of a neighborโ€™s dog, setting into motion a series of events that expose far greater mysteries. As the clues fall into place, they reveal a community of disparate characters, a family with secrets, and a gifted mind in complicated relationship with the world.

To tell Christopher’s story and show the world through his eyes, I’m thrilled to be sharing the stage with this incredibly talented cast: MacGregor Arney as Christopher, Regan Linton as Siobhan, Zack Myers as Father, Miriam Laube as Mother, and Raul Ramos, Bruce Young, Tom Reed, and Tinia Moulder in the Ensemble with me. Us ensemble members will be portraying all sorts of people whom Christopher encounters on his journey. I’m quite enjoying this trend (and challenge) of once again playing multiple characters in the same project!!

Get Your Tickets Here!

Sneak peek of our set!! I'm #terribleatselfies

Sneak peek of our set!! Also I’m #terribleatselfies

Dates: Nov. 10 – Dec. 3, 2017
Times: 730pm except Sundays at 2pm
Cost: FREE thanks to Mixed Blood’s Radical Hospitality program! BUT click HERE if you’d like guaranteed admission or if you want to show your support by becoming a Member.

Never heard of Radical Hospitality?? It’s one of the many reasons why I LOVE working here: admission is provided at no-cost for folks who find cost a barrier to attending Mixed Blood. Admission is on a first come, first served basis. The box office opens two hours before every show; seating begins 30 minutes before show time and is general admission (no assigned seats). Mixed Blood is also physically accessible and offers ASL interpreting, audio description, assisted listening devices, and captioning for its productions. Patrons self-identifying with a disability also can get free guaranteed admission and free transportation to and from Mixed Blood.


Milestone Alert!!!

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See that book in the picture? It’s the PUBLISHED playscript of Aditi Brennan Kapil’s Displaced Hindu Gods Trilogy AKA the first play(s) I did at Mixed Blood (back in 2013) AKA – here comes the milestone! – the first time my name is published as the actor who originated a role! Or in this case – ROLES!! I portrayed Kalki in Part 2 The Chronicles of Kalki and Shiv in Part 3 Shiv. Want your own copy? Click HERE!

Posted in News

Guess Who’s Back?!

Another fun pic from my recent shoot with Jody Christopherson of PFA Photo!

Another fun pic from my recent shoot with Jody Christopherson of PFA Photo!

 

Who’s back? Marie Rodell and the rest of Rachel Carson’s posse, that’s who!

Next week, I’ll be singing my face off at NY Summerfest with some really wonderful humans as we present a new version of Rachel, a musical about the life of one of my personal heroes, Rachel Carson.

I was lucky to be a part of a workshop of an earlier draft of this piece in the 2015 Fresh Fruit Festival, and I’m so grateful to have the opportunity to tell her story again- for THREE NIGHTS ONLY. Ticket information is below – it would be great to see you there!

 

 

About the Show

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Written by brother-sister writing duo Jared and Jessie Field and directed by Ari Laura KreithRachel is about the life of biologist Rachel Carson, author of “Silent Spring,” which sparked the modern environmental movement. Struggling to find her place in the world as a scientist and a woman, her skill as a writer eventually brings her success and critical acclaim. However, when the destructive nature of pesticides is brought to her attention, Carson jeopardizes her health, her success, and the deep relationship she shares with her neighbor Dorothy Freeman to take a stand for the earth.

The show takes place in dual timelines, with the brilliant Rebecca Muller and Erin Fish sharing the role of Rachel Carson in her younger and older years and Amie Bermowitz playing Dorothy (and a few other characters). I’ll be portraying four different women who inspired and were inspired by Rachel, while singing the alto line in the comfy basement – the pic above is what my face looks like when I hold a low F (!!!) for 8 measures. Join us!

Get Your Tickets Here!

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Rachel will have ONLY three performances next week as part of New York Theater Festival’s 2017 Summerfest, and tickets are selling well so far! The dates are:

Tuesday, August 15th at 6:15pm
Saturday, August 19th at 8:30pm
Sunday, August 20th at 1pm
 

Click HERE to purchase your ticket!
 
All shows are at the Hudson Guild Theatre:
441 West 26th Street
New York, NY 10001

If you’re interested in learning more about the show’s development and Rachel’s history, check out our website HERE. And if you’re the social media type, please LIKE the show on Facebook and FOLLOW it on Twitter – we really appreciate the support!

Annnnnnnnd if you WILL be coming to the show, please let me know which night so I can come say hello to you afterwards!


Video Bonus 

Did you miss my segment on the Today Show a few weeks ago?! It was chock full of useful information for your summer safety ๐Ÿ™‚ I’m proud to have had the opportunity to once again represent the American Red Cross on such a scale, spreading the preparedness, health, and safety Word!

 

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Another Month, Another Milestone: My FIRST Understudy Gig!

This super fun pic is from a recent "personality" photo shoot with Jody Christopherson of PFA Photo - check her out!!

This super fun pic is from a recent “personality” photo shoot with Jody Christopherson of PFA Photo – check her out!!

Happy Summer!

It’s been quite an exciting few months:

After returning from Geva Theatre Center at the end of February, I went back to work in the voiceover booth. I recorded two video games (my firsts!), some industrials, and am about to start working on Season 2 of Nickelodeon’s Regal Academy. I also moved. AND… I booked my first understudy gig!!!

I’m so excited to be understudying the role of Jess in Martyna Majok’s new play Cost of Living, now playing Off-Broadway at Manhattan Theatre Club!! More info on the show, what it means to be an understudy, and a *TICKET OFFER* below!

Feel free to like my Facebook Page and/or follow me on Twitter to get more frequent updates on my career goings-on. 

About the Play

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Directed by Obie Award winner Jo Bonney, this achingly human and surprisingly funny play from exciting new voice Martyna Majok is about the forces that bring people together, the realities of facing the world with physical disabilities and how deeply we all need each other. Truck driver Eddie (Victor Williams) is struggling to rebuild a relationship with his estranged wife Ani (Katy Sullivan) and Jess (Jolly Abraham) is trying to navigate the day-to-day with John (Gregg Mozgala), her new boss in a job that she desperately needs. People are hard.

We’re a New York Times Critics’ Pick (!!!) and Variety says it’s “A powerful, bittersweet play about people who need other people to survive.”

We have 8 performances a week, Tuesdays through Sundays, and are currently on sale through July 16. But stay tuned – we’re waiting to hear if we’ll extend past that! Click HERE for more information about Cost of Living and Manhattan Theatre Club.

What’s an Understudy?

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Basically, an understudy is an actor hired to learn a part (or “track”) as backup in the event that the actor cast in the part is unable to perform in a show. When a show has a long run (Cost of Living will have at least a 9 week run) and 8 shows per week, *stuff* happens. Maybe a cast member gets sick or books a commercial or has a family emergency. If they can’t make it to a show (with or without advanced notice), their understudy steps in – the show must go on, after all.

I’m a type of understudy called a “standby”: I show up at “half hour” to every performance (30 minutes before curtain) and hang out before and during the show *just in case.* It also means I better KNOW THE SHOW inside and out, so that if I need to step in no one else is thrown. All understudies are cogs in a well-oiled machine: replace one and the machine still works.

My wonderful fellow understudies (Christopher ImbroscianoMary Theresa Archbold, Howard Overshown) and I watch the show almost every night and attend 2 understudy-only rehearsals each week. It’s very different from all my previous gigs, but I’m enjoying the challenge!

Ticket Offers!

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As an understudy, there’s no guarantee that I’ll ever get to go on (which is certainly the bummer part of the gig), but the show is SO BEAUTIFUL that I hope you’ll come see it anyway!! And bonus: I have to be at the theatre for every performance, so I’ll at least get to see you after the show ๐Ÿ™‚

Here are some *TICKET OFFERS* to entice you:

1) Click HERE or call the City Center Box Office at (212) 581-1212 to purchase tickets – use code F&F for a “Friends and Family” discount!

2) Download the TodayTix app and grab one of the first come, first served rush tickets ($25) on sale starting at 10am on the day of each performance.

3) Join Manhattan Theatre Club’s “30 Under 30” program and get a pair of $30 tickets to any MTC show! Click HERE for information on how to join.

4) Contact me! I have access to $45 house seats and a limited number of comps each week. Just give me a few days advanced notice ๐Ÿ™‚

And if I DO learn I’ll be going on (in advance or last-minute), I’ll announce it via a quick e-blast (sign up for the newsletter HERE) and on social media (like my Facebook Page and follow me on Twitter) – stay tuned and fingers crossed!!

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Let Me Teach You CPR!

Did you know that I am a Spokesperson for the American Red Cross (where I am also an Instructor for First Aid, CPR, and AED classes at various levels)? Well…now you know! 

Last week, I was invited back on The Dr. Oz Show to demonstrate how to perform CPR and use an AED, and talk about why they’re such important skills to know. It was my 4th time on the show and I had a blast shooting the segments. I’m grateful to have had the opportunity to once again represent the Red Cross!

Check out all three segments below ๐Ÿ™‚

CLICK HERE for Segment 1: How to perform CPR part 1

CLICK HERE for Segment 2: How to perform CPR part 2

CLICK HERE for Segment 3: How to use an AED

Annnnnnnd some production stills from our shoot!

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Bob Harper (of “The Biggest Lose” fame) was on The Dr. Oz Show to talk about his recent medical scare: three months ago he went into cardiac arrest at a gym. He credits quick CPR and AED use for saving his life.

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Dr. Oz wanted to showcase that anyone can learn CPR in just a few minutes – so we held a “Hands-Only CPR class” during his show and invited several audience members to participate!

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There are 2 steps to performing CPR. If your victim is unresponsive and not breathing, STEP ONE is to call 911. Then put your hands in the center of the chest, with the heel of one hand along the breastbone, and do STEP TWO: push hard and fast.

Posted in News