Actor, Puppeteer, and Teaching Artist


I try not to get too mystical in my approach to acting. I find a lot of that sort of vocabulary to be really off-putting. In our need to ennoble the craft we try to elevate it beyond what it usually is to make ourselves feel like more ourselves. But there are “mystical” things about the craft that you can’t dodge in the same way that carpenters can’t really avoid the fact the wood has a personality. Using the words we do makes it seem a little cartoonish, but it’s true so… there we go.With acting I trying not to use spell casting metaphors but we don’t have great vocabulary for exerting power to create tangible emotional change in another on another with simply words. There are hoary tropes about all crafts and professions. Those ink-stained wretches who wrote our newspapers and novels. Our paint spattered visual artists. A potter


One of the most embarrassing moment in my life that I can recall was at post-show drinks one night. I was in the sweet spot of having a reputation in Austin such that younger folks would listen and/or ask me for advice and hadn’t yet triangulated that a reputation was just a rumor. So, at least two double tall gin and tonics in, a younger person asked about next steps in being a professional actor. One of my social flaws is that I believe you. If you tell me that you’re an accountant, I don’t ask to see your certificate. You have no reason to lie about such a thing so, okay, you’re an accountant. If you tell me that you want to be a professional actor I assume that all of those words in that order mean the same thing to both of us. If you want to be

These Glories Were Unimaginable

It’s difficult to have an honest conversation about religion unless you are in substantial agreement about it with your fellow discoursers. The emotional muscles needed to talk about it without becoming either defensive of your beliefs or evangelical are pretty substantial. We mostly do everything we can to avoid it. As in all things this means that the loudest are those left to represent the entire topic, to our great loss. I think that humans want to believe in something greater than themselves. The easiest to believe in is a grand creator. Something, someone, beyond the patched and broken people around us. When we become disillusioned and lose faith, early or late, there becomes an absence that wants to be filled. With art, or a mission, or a career, or other people. But it’s not ever an exact fit.Hearing anyone talk about it with the sense of loss, of grief,

Things I Know Today

A downside of having a functional brain is understanding how little you know. This is compounded by being able to see clearly every time you learn something new how much less you know than you thought. Where that leaves you, if you’re being intellectually honest, is never having solid enough footing to be able to ever shout anything into the void. If the only way to be heard in 2021 is to shout into the din with all the arrogance you can muster, right or wrong, it’s difficult to see value in that. There is value in speaking a little more slowly, a little more softly and letting it exist off to the side of the firehose for people if they need it. It’s not the way to fame, but it’s pretty late for that for me anyway. I can only speak to the things I know, and I try

Consist of the subject matter of stalking.

We’re all trying to leave a mark. You never know when you’re going to die and you’d like to have nudged the world a little before that happens. The thing is: there in no instructional manual for making that happen. Religion tries. There’s an old Jesus People line about the Bible being “Basic Instructions Before Leaving Earth”. But mostly outside of those large frameworks we are left to find our own way.

Herein Will I Imitate the Sun

My extended cardiac pause at the end of last year was cause for reflection, which I think most folks would find pretty common. That period of reflection combined with a political environment running so hard against what I believe to be my and my broader community’s best interests left me reeling a bit. Is this political moment a call to more explicit political action? How can I improve the community in a more direct way? And how do I define that community in this new place?

To a New Year…

A month ago I died. Only for a while, but if you stick to binary score keeping it’s the sort of thing that makes you sit up and take notice. My recovery has been pretty speedy so I spend a lot of time making light of the situation, but I am a lottery winner, the odds of making it out aren’t good, never mind being home and mobile so quickly. To be feeling this good so soon after release feels like a miracle. Oh my friends I’ve Begun to worry right Where I should be grateful I should be satisfied Following on the heels of the Fall Rep for Classical Actors Ensemble, and with nothing on the horizon in my theatre world, this end of year and my cardiac adventure feels like an ending. I have worked hard to gain a foothold here in the Twin Cities as an actor,


My brain didn’t come with a user guide or best practices manual. Mostly I have to figure out how it works and then sort of lean to make it work more the way I think it should. It’s not that it’s broken or anything it just deals with things in ways that aren’t useful. Time for instance. The subroutines in my brain deal with time in counterproductive ways. My experience is that most folks deal with time (in terms of planning) fairly granularly – down to about 15 minute chunks. It never works that way for me. I can get it down to about an hour. My brain always always always builds in overhead. It builds in the normal overage and travel time to and from. Then traffic. Then late/lost time. Then the 5 minute early factor. All of a sudden that quick 15 minute meeting is an hour and

Talk About What’s Good

Oh internet, fetid firehose of information and unwashed humanity, you so confound and delight. If you plug into the pipeline and crank the valves fully open you get poleaxed first by the volume of content, then by the raw negativity of the content. If you think that your contact time with that negativity doesn’t change your outlook on the world you’re being naïve. You are what you consume. I’m not going to deny that a fine appetizer of schadenfreude or a butter-ladened dessert of partisan bile is fun for you and it can be a nice treat. Nor am I suggesting an Oprah-style giveaway of Pollyanna glasses for a trying time (“YOU get culture blindness!” “YOU get culture blindness!”).Roblox Free Unlimited Robux and Tix Life can be difficult. Art creation can be difficult. Excel spreadsheet creation can be difficult. Making/finding/keeping money can be difficult. The question becomes: Why sit in the  filthy

Sometimes the Show Isn’t Over When It Ends

Megan and I are theatre folk. I much more than she, but we both have spent  an inordinate amount of time in darkened rooms playing pretend. More to the point, a huge portion of presenting any show is simply event planning, so when faced with a wedding we mostly defaulted to planning it the way you would plan any other show. Megan asked two costume designers she loved to work on her dress, and we cast a camera-ready, battle seasoned improviser as Preacher along with a six member chorus bridal party, two readers, and four musicians. All straight out of central casting. We wrote the wedding with the Preacher via video chat and a Google document, we cataloged all of our shenanigans in a wiki and Megan walked down the aisle to a song written by the inimitable Adam Hilton and the organic, free range Boone Graham for the first

Watch out for that last step

I am an agnostic (tl;dr – I don’t know and you don’t either) One of my pet peeve responses from believers in my experience when we discuss our differences vis-à-vis religion is the misbegotten idea that because I don’t draw my morality from the same source that they do I can’t draw any morality at all. Which is terribly condescending and dehumanizing. I have said time and again to anyone who’ll listen (so mostly Megan and Will) that I am a better Christian in terms of outlook and relation to others than I ever was when I had faith. Without institutional grace there’s no real leeway. But I don’t miss being judgmental. I don’t miss trying to recreate the secular world in a smaller, shoddier, Bowdlerized version of itself because faith shouldn’t mean you ever have to give up anything. But I do miss ritual. Ritual is hard to recreate

10 Things I Wish I’d been Told in College (and 1 I was)

From the archive. Originally posted at the Cambiare Productions Blog on 10/25/2009 Everyone loves lists. Well. I love lists, and while there’s been a lot of talk over my three years actively blogging about theatre about the failings of the Theatre Education Industrial Complex, we’ve not really attempted to create a curriculum we approve of. Largely because, well, creating a new theatre education paradigm is hard. And I’m not going to do that here, because I’m not sure how to even begin. Instead? Herein lies a list of things I wish someone had told me over a beer the night of graduation. “Well… you made it, and now you’re ‘In the Club’ so here’s all the things you weren’t taught.” This does include stuff we’ve talked about here in the past. But not all in one place. I also want to include the one thing I WAS told outside the framework of

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