Thursday, February 28, 2013

Reinventing Oneself

Typecasting is an entertainment phenomenon. An actor may be cast in a certain type of role because of his look, or because of other roles he's played.  Oftentimes an actor who is known for a particular role or type of role gets pigeonholed.  Directors and producers don't think they can play other roles. Some actors fight this by taking roles far from the roles they're known for.  Take Eve Plumb, for example.  As Jan Brady, on the Brady Bunch, she was pigeonholed as the good girl, so she took a role that shocked people at the time.  She played a teen-aged prostitute in Dawn: Portait of a Teenage Runaway.   Sally Field shed her Gidget/Flying Nun reputation in Sybil, a film about a woman with multiple personalities.  People do this in real life as well.  It's called reinventing ourselves.

I've been lucky enough to know many people who have had the courage to reinvent themselves.  A Microsoft Executive who left the corporate world to pursue his love of acting.  He recently went on to produce the Tony Award winning, Porgy and Bess, on Broadway. A waiter who started his own catering company. A banquet manager who went on to open her own successful restaurant and at least two more businesses after that.  I can't keep up with her.  An English teacher who wrote novels on the side became a full time novelist.  A woman over fifty who went back to school and then to Law School to become an attorney.  An actor from Texas who worked in the World Trade Center became a novelist.  I'm so inspired by these people who have had the courage not to be typecast in their lives and show the world and themselves they can do more.

Now I find myself ready to spread my wings and show the world I'm more than a community theatre actor, a  volunteer coordinator, a house manager, and a part time writer.  I feel my life calling and I'm ready to begin my second act.

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