TheRealSharon's Blog











{June 28, 2011}   It’s a Public Misconception

Writing papers for a presentation was never THAT hard for me. I’ve always loved English and been very good at it. When the topic was something that didn’t interest me, it made it a little more difficult, of course. But I would research like a good girl should and put it together. The writing was never a problem, the presenting was.

No matter how great my paper sounded, when it came to reading it in front the class, I just wanted to go crawl somewhere and hide. In fact, if I could just face the chalkboard and speak, it would be easier. With all eyes on me as I read something I created, I always imagined they were judging me. Not just judging my words and if they agreed with them or not, but also judging ME. What were they thinking as their eyes bore upon me? Were they judging my hair or my clothes? My mind would wander as I read on every conceivable ill thing they could be thinking of me. BUT reading off the paper was easier than when I had to do a memorized presentation.

THEN I had no paper to look down on to take away their eyeballs from me. I was forced to look into the audience and speak to them as if they were all friends almost. And heaven forbid, the persuasive speeches where your grade depended on making people take YOUR side. I hated speech class, both in school AND in college.

In school, people seemed to understand my fear and I obviously wasn’t the only one with it. Many people have a fear of public speaking and everyone KNEW I was shy to begin with. I mean, I wasn’t shy at home with close friends and family, but in public, I WAS. School was a place I didn’t feel like I fit in due to harsh words thrown my way so I just tended to cower and keep to myself as much as possible.

College was a different story. After getting into Theater, I found a niche and became more comfortable with myself. I started engaging others in conversation without them being the starters of it and speaking up more. BUT giving speeches still scared me to death. Which is when I learned a huge misconception people have. I was always asked how I could be so afraid of giving a speech when I could get on stage and sing, dance, and act with no problem?

Well, in my opinion, I have never understood how people could think public speaking should be EASY for an actor.

When I did plays or performances, I had lines laid out for me already to memorize. The lines were already written by great playwrights and not myself. They all required me to play someone that was not ME but another character all together. I guess for people that don’t act, it might be hard to decipher between performing as a character and speaking as yourself. BUT there really IS a difference.

It’s like you’re putting on a mask…and sometimes, you literally are wearing one. Other times, the mask is invisible to your eyes but it’s still there. I never had the fear that people were judging ME during a play, because when I’m on the stage, it’s not me, it’s my character. I am pretending or “hiding” behind a different persona. I am NOT showing myself to the audience but whatever the play calls for me to be.

When doing a speech, I must write my OWN lines that have never been heard before. Whether they are great lines or not has not been deduced by anyone other than myself. I must then memorize my own words and recite them in front of a classroom where I can’t pretend to be a character. I am literally being judged and graded for being myself. It’s hard to be judged for WHO you are. Even though, daily, we each are judged by others for our words, our actions, the way we live, it’s another thing to know you’re being graded for this. Especially when you’re an actor/actress and a teacher may have the misguided assumption that you should be better than what you are because you get up in front of audiences all the time. If I was told in the middle of a play, I had to give a speech that I wrote, I would have freaked out. If I was told, I could write the speech as a character and play THAT character while doing the speech, it would have been manageable, though. Obviously, speech class…you can’t really do that.

This is not to say ALL actors are scared of it, I’m sure some are just fine with it. In fact, many actors do shows and movies, etc. where they play themselves. Which you would think would be the easiest job ever, right? WRONG.

The hardest acting for an actor/actress is playing themselves because it entails being completely 100% vulnerable. You can’t hide if you’re showing people everything about you.

In the last acting class I did, we had to do a short monologue. ANY monologue we wanted. I searched all over and couldn’t seem to find one I liked enough until I found one that resonated with me so much because it sounded like ME. I just knew I could play the character because I could relate. It’s easier to bring up the emotion if you can relate. But then as I practiced it, I realized this was also going to be the hardest acting I had ever attempted because I was going to be left vulnerable. The words of the character were words that I felt.

*I tried to find the monologue online again, but I couldn’t….or I would have put it here*

It was basically a monologue where the girl is talking about how she is more than her “fat”, more than her weight and being judged for it, etc. It truly sounded like I had just ripped a piece of my diary out and was doing it for a monologue. Which I actually could have and called it an “original monologue”. But at the same time, Can you imagine reading a page of your most private sorrow in front of class? I was exposing true feelings that I had always felt but had always been afraid to tell people.

I did THAT monologue and it was tough for me because I felt like I was just speaking to a class about my own personal feelings. I also got the best praise ever in my acting classes for it, too, because of the vulnerability and I was told that kind of monologue is the hardest to do.

Afterwards, I was proud of myself for being that vulnerable. To have done what I had done before and played a character would have been the easy way out for me. Instead, I basically confronted a “public speaking” fear by doing a character who was just like me. By doing so, I faced a huge fear and I conquered it.



Yesterday and today’s prompt on The Daily Post sounded fun to me so I thought I would do them for my post today!

Write a haiku about something that drives you nuts. | The Daily Post at WordPress.com.

Dishes are evil

Why can’t they just wash themselves?

They give me headaches

Not the best Haiku in the world but I hate doing dishes with a passion. Not a huge fan of cooking either but partly because there’s always dishes! If dishes would magically wash themselves, I would love to cook more.

What was your favorite class in college? | The Daily Post at WordPress.com.

My favorite class was definitely Acting class. I started off college as a shy Music Major and when I built up the confidence to try out for a singing/dancing group there, I also decided to try out an Acting class. For fun and because I always secretly wanted to and never had the guts. I fell in love with Acting and I look back and wish I had gotten into it sooner.

I still to this day freak out at the thought of speaking in front of an audience or giving a speech, but acting in a play? It makes me a little nervous but it’s the good kind. It’s an adrenaline rush. I love the feeling of getting to play pretend for awhile. When you’re on that stage, you are no longer YOU. All the problems in your life at the moment are pushed off on the back burner. Your whole focus is on your character and somehow taking on a new persona makes me forget that underneath the character, I am still ME in front of an audience speaking. The fear subsides. It’s a feeling for years that I wish I had known before. I had sang in front of people and had a taste of it which is part of why I loved and still love to sing so much. I had no idea that acting was even more a step up from that feeling. And when I was in A.C. Singers, my friends saw a different Sharon. The same girl who would barely say hi and I’m fine was on stage singing and dancing with a huge smile on her face.

I majored in Theatre because I learned that it’s not just singing I love. I love performing. I KNOW that I was born to be a performer.

Problem is, things in my life have kept me from going after my dream….but I guess that’ll be another post…



{January 20, 2011}   And I’m feeling….good

Sing for the heck of it, wherever you are! 🙂

I have that song stuck in my head….”Feeling good” by Michael Buble, I think.

I’m in a good mood at the moment..even though I was stressed this morning and had a headache earlier, still need to pack for my trip to Austin tomorrow, BUT I am happy and in a good mood. Why am I in such a good mood? I don’t know really other than the fact I get to get out of town tomorrow and actually go somewhere other than this boring city I live in but it feels good to be in a good mood. Most of my friends and family know that I suffer from depression, which is partly a side effect of my thyroid problem and partly because of my weight. Well, sometimes it feels that days where I actually feel “good” and not just ok are few and far between so when I do feel good, I am so thankful for that.

Today I got to talk to my best friend Rebekah who is also one of my nieces(I have 8 of them in all). I do have more than one person I consider a best friend but if I had to pick just one as the best of them all, I have to say her. Not that my other best friends are not great because they are but simply because there’s something to be said from having a best friend who is also a family member, who has known me ALL her life and we just “click” as friends, always have. Anyways…back to my original train of thought..I got to talk to her on the phone today and she told me about this awesome website called improveverywhere that is right “up my alley” as she put it. And it soooo is…I love watching people do improv in random places; I just love performing in general.

At Christmas time, she had gotten one of her cousins, which is my niece Grace, this really fun game called Quelf that I had never heard of. It’s a lot like Cranium but in some ways, even MORE fun. I had so much fun with that game. I had to make a short rap about my appearance on one round, make up a short story that ended up using a camel, a witch and ended with bubble gum and I even used sunglasses and a paper towel roll to make a scuba dive mask that I had to wear for half of a game. I loved every minute of it….I may be 27 years old but I LOVE getting to acting like a kid again and I love getting a chance to do anything where I can sort of play another character, even for a short while.

I LOVE performing….and I miss it so much. If I had to give a speech in front of people, I would completely and utterly hate it and look uncomfortable but if you tell me I am doing a speech playing a character, then I could do it. There’s just something about getting on stage in front of people and pretending to be somebody else. It’s like it’s not me they are seeing anymore, it’s whatever character I am portraying. I also feel that way when it comes to singing, although it has been far too long since I have done that on stage. My first love was singing in all honesty. I used to sing solos in church all the time. I remember starting to sing and I would be singing the words but it felt as if my body was no longer standing there singing, like I was transported away looking down on myself. Not sure if that may seem weird or not, but it’s true. All my fears of being in front of the audience just went away while I was singing and I escaped.

I looked on at Theatre from a distance all through my school years. I always considered taking it but I was always so shy and could never agree to it. When I got to college, I was still shy and it was hard enough for me being a Music Major with an emphasis on Voice because voice lessons made me nervous…singing “Do re mi fa…” in front of someone trying to help me didn’t exactly help me escape, it just made me feel overly critical of any perceived faults I may have had.  But I loved to sing so I stuck with it. Halfway through college, I got brave. I guess partly because I started to lose some weight and partly because after that, I conquered my shyness enough to try out for A.C. Singers, this singing/dancing group. I had seen some of the performances and I wanted to be one of them so bad, it ached. I wanted to sing solos somewhere else other than church. So I tried out, made it and somehow I got bold and decided to take an acting class as an elective. I figured maybe acting would help me in A.C. Singers and just overall with my shyness. Little did I know that I could actually be even decent at acting even though I had no real experience and that I would fall in love with it. I discovered within myself what I was missing. I love singing but adding acting along with it led me to truly discover the real me. I just love performing in general, the adrenaline rush before you get on stage, getting to become someone else for awhile, being around other people who also know what it’s like to feel like an outsider at some point in their life…I just love it!

And I haven’t done a play in what feels like forever now….:( I miss it so much…I feel like a part of me has been gone since the last play I did and I don’t think I will ever get it back until I find an outlet where I can perform again. ~sighs~

BUT I am still in a good mood because it makes me happy to remember the fun I had acting and that website my niece showed me made me really happy.

Now off to packing for Austin!



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