A Lesson In Acting, a Seaside Adventure, and a Work in Progress

This week in Ireland has been an eventful one, to say the least. Every day at my job I am learning something new, and no day is like the one before. As we get closer to our showing of Frankenstein (this Friday—come check it out!) the play is still undergoing major changes, making it a completely different experience each time it is performed. I love that I get to be a part of this creative process, and I can’t wait to see how the play has evolved from the simple table reading on the first day to the full theatrical event unfolding this weekend.

The most important part of my workweek, though, was a small moment shared between my boss, Louis, and myself. He pulled me aside one afternoon and asked me a simple question: “Do you consider yourself shy?” My answer was an immediate yes. He then told  me that he was going to teach me a lesson he teaches all of his actors. I was a little skeptical at first, as I am the furthest thing from an actor, and I have no intention of ever becoming one. But I kept an open mind as Louis taught me something very valuable: how to act more confident. He taught me about making better eye contact and not shying away because I think the other person is getting weirded out. He told me that at the end of the day, I tend to slip out because I don’t want to disrupt anyone around me, and that I needed to learn to be assertive. He noted that when I say yes to a task, my answer is always an unsure, quiet “okay” and that I really needed to work on projecting my voice. And he challenged me. He challenged me to practice these three simple tasks every day, only at work, and that soon enough they would come naturally to me, and I would be ready to take these new skills out into the world. As someone who has always been painfully reserved, I am excited to have a safe space to practice my confidence, and I am lucky to have such an understanding and genuinely supportive team at Theatre Lovett.

I also discovered the small village of Howth this weekend, when my friend Phoebe signed me up for a 20 mile hiking tour—without my knowledge. I can’t be mad, though, because what I found in Howth was a wonderful little seaside town filled with kind people, historic landmarks, and incredible beauty. At the end of the day, as I sat on the rocky beach and dipped my toes into a little tide pool, I realized that Howth had captured my heart, and watching the little kids running climbing across the rocks had me thinking of what it would be like to bring my own children there, someday. I know that Howth has become a little haven for me, away from the bustle of Dublin’s city center but close enough that I can escape for a weekend getaway, and it is definitely somewhere I intend to visit over and over again during the rest of my time here and Ireland and beyond.