Tuesday, July 28, 2009
Go to http://www.squeakymoore.com/ to check out my other work.
Monday, July 13, 2009
Upcoming Acting Workshop!!!
How to stand out as an actor!
Learn to think outside the box!
Workshop for Adult Actors
Saturday, August 15th
1 pm - 5 pm At Shelter Studios
244 West 54th Street/ between Broadway & 8th Avenue
Workshop taught by Squeaky Moore.
Learn critical strategies for a successful audition. Learn to think "Outside of the Box".
In this workshop, Squeaky talks about the job of the actor and the process for analyzing sides and creating a great "read" on your next audition.
Squeaky will give key points to help lead the actor to active, personal, relational choices, and help the actor to "think outside of the box".
In this workshop you will:
· Learn key points on how to breakdown and prepare sides.
· Learn to make quick, active and strong choices.
· Employ techniques from Michael Shurtleff's book Auditions.
· Work with various other actors, which will help you to stay fresh and live in the moment.
· Receive direction and personal attention on work.
This intensive workshop will prove challenging and stimulating and allow you to improve your acting skills and auditions within a safe environment.
(Actors will receive scenes in advance to memorize before workshop)
Contact: Squeaky Moore @ firstname.lastname@example.org or 773-655-9822
View website: www.squeakymoore.com
Thursday, July 2, 2009
Still, those few are nothing like me. I just don't care about what I look like when I am at a corporate job. In my case, while over sleeping, I pre-think of an outfit I will wear to my dreaded corporate job in between snoozes. I get up just in enough time to take a 2 minute shower, promising myself that I'd wash the other not-so-important parts of my body more carefully later when I am back at home and fully awake and energetic. I lotion only the important parts of my body which are the ones that will show; and this can vary from day-to-day depending on my pre-thought out outfit. I grab a pair of underwear not caring if they are appropriate for the outfit I have chosen or not, because it is just too early to think about that! Then I learn that the pre-thought outfit is wrinkled. This means that I grab what ever I can find that is thrown on the dresser or over the bed or over the sofa, because I was too beat after working hard the day before to hang them up-which of course means that I never get around to washing those other less-important body parts because I am too tired for that too.
Jewelry and make-up are not even on the agenda for the day, (though I always carry a make up kit with me and an audition shirt, in case my agent calls me for an audition). My hair is brushed into a pony tail while walking to my car. Once on the train, I look around and wonder where the other corporate buffs got their coffee from and how they managed the time to make a stop before work or how they allotted time in their schedules to make coffee at home, let alone find the mugs to put them in.
When I am in the office, all the women are chatting loudly and skipping around uprightly with an exuberance that I can't muster up until late afternoon. I turn on my computer and I have about twenty five emails, well written, with the proper salutations. It is just not like this for me. I get to work and immediately take a bathroom break; in the handicap bathroom (because it is a single stall and I can lock the doors). I sit on the toilet with my clothes on, prop my elbow on the bar that helps the handicap to balance themselves and I prop my head ever so... between my wrist and the tip of my fingers and I narc out for about 15-20 minutes, after I pray for forgiveness for having little concern for the handicap. I sleep about the length of time my computer is set to lock. I return to my desk and delete all of the emails that are of no importance, and flag all of the emails that I definitely have to respond to, with a reminder for me to answer them in an hour. Then I get up and head to the cafeteria to get breakfast and coffee. I return to my desk, eat my breakfast and browse my personal emails for any audition notices and all audition breakdowns.
After about an hour, my flagged messages are alerting me that I need to adhere to them in which, then I make a decision which ones need to be answered right then and which ones I can snooze on for another hour or two. Again, I don't care!!!! I do what I have to do to get by. i take another bathroom break. Afternoon comes and the coffee has settled and now I am awake. I do a once over my appearance and hate myself for looking like a complete idiot! I question how I could have forgotten that the black pants that I am wearing had an oatmeal spill on them from two days ago. I decide that I will make an effort to prepare myself for work that night so that I can look better at work, I promise myself that I'd wake a little earlier the next day so that I can at least curl my hair and look more presentable for work. Needless to say, I repeat the same cycle over again the next day, with very little variance.
It all comes down to the fact that I think it is stupid that all these people have to dress in 7 piece suits, only to stare at each other for 8 hours. Who in the hell made that rule! It irritates me to wake so early to do something; I absolutely hate doing and could careless about. I could careless about the email I receive that says, "WACIS 2.0 will be a platform life cycle upgrade of the existing WACIS 1.0/1.1 environment with Application Platform and specific enhancements." You should know after reading an email with a message equivalent to the one above, I am in need of a bathroom break-just so that I can be rested enough to process the meaning of it all.
What does this have to do with acting on cameras and the word, "cut" and auditions and "alpha 1, take 4, camera's rolling, and...Action!" Those words are music and melody to my ears they get me fired up. Those words make me walk upright with a sense of urgency. The thought of hearing those words each day gets me to talking loud and chipper in my upper voice register. And even if my call time is at 5 am in the morning, I can still come to work in my pajama's if I choose, because they have someone at my job that will dress me and do my hair an makeup and prepare my jewelry and make sure through the day that my lipstick is reapplied and my face is powdered. They will feed me and bring me coffee if I need it and walk me to my exact location when it is time to work!
Now that's life. This is how work should be. But that's not even the best part about work, the best part is, while I am waiting to work, if I choose to lie on a sofa and sleep because I am tired, I can. I can kick off the carefully chosen shoes I have on and prop my feet up, lean my head back and sleep-while at work-without getting fired and without hiding in the bathroom.
My advice to all: Spend time daily searching for a job that you love to do that you can get paid for. My advice is also to daydream about the perfect job so that you don't get trapped into doing something you hate. You should never give up dreaming. Like me, use sometime at your job, running your lines with the computer (acting as substitute for the other person in the scene). or take a bathroom break and do mirror exercises using your eyes as the eyes of the other person while reciting your lines or monologues. And definitely research online auditions that you can go on the next day or week. But DO NOT BECOME CONTENT, because this job is just a means to an end- the mean time, in between time.
Thursday, May 7, 2009
Wednesday, March 4, 2009
Evaluate where you are
Understanding where you are in your career is critical when trying to attain success. It is important to evaluate where you stand against the grand scheme of things. In order to determine if your career is in a crisis and help you rise above the crisis, I would like to suggest a few guidelines I learned and follow, which also determines the basis from which I write. The following few guidelines could be used for anyone who is in the beginning, intermediate or advance levels of their careers.
First, make sure of what it is you want to be/do, without any shadows of doubt. Otherwise, you’ll waste years of your time. So do researches before you embark on the journey. Second, setting annual goals in the beginning of each year should be the first career objective you set for yourself. Please know, but do not dwell on the big picture (ultimate objective your striving for) when trying to make your dreams happen, or it can become overwhelming. In order to reach your career objectives, you should set smaller objectives, anywhere from 3 to 5 per month, to help you stay on course. When trying to reach the pinnacle of succession, it is important to have an accountabilities person or mentor--someone you can meet with weekly, biweekly, or monthly (I like to meet once a month, otherwise the meetings become overwhelming), who will discuss your objectives with you and hold you accountable for making them happen. Having an accountabilities partner helps you to stay focus on your tasks because you know that you have to answer to someone. Hopefully the person you have chosen to help you in your journey also can serve as a mentor and give you helpful ideas and aid in guiding your path.
Now, that I have listed the guidelines, let’s discuss and evaluate where you are in comparison to the grand scheme of things. Ask yourself these questions:
Where do I ultimately want to be?
Where am I now? Be honest with yourself.
I know that the truth hurt, but this is an opportunity to gage how much work you have done and how much you need to do, to get where you want to be. And, it’s true what they say; the truth will set you free.
How much time do I invest in my career? Daily? Weekly?
How much money do I invest into my career?
I will never forget when I came to the realization that while I invested much time to my career, going on auditions, practicing monologues and songs, etc., that I did not invest money into my career. Truthfully, it was disheartening to know that I invested lower than 20% of money into myself. I tried to skate around the “money thing”, taking the cheaper route. All that did was prolong my successes. I’m going to say this, and please listen to me and learn from my mistake. YOU HAVE TO INVEST IN YOURSELF! If you don’t, how do you expect anyone else to invest in you. Quit going for the cheaper headshots, cheaper reel, and cheapest vocal coach. You spend more money in the long run. DO IT RIGHT THE FIRST TIME. You get what you pay for.
Be honest with your self
Focus on your strengths-your strong suit.
I have always had talent, since I could remember, at least dating back to 11 years old, do I remember being dramatic and doing poetry and getting training, but I lacked confidence in self, and the skills I had. In my opinion, this slowed my successes down. I had to be honest with myself, in order to get to the next level of my career, but my lack of confidence was a huge thing that was holding me back.
After, my bout with honesty, I can now say that I am aggressive, bold and confident of who I am, what I want, what roles I desire to play, what roles I can play, how many Oscars I want to win, and I am on the right path to bigger success.
Monday, February 2, 2009
Ever where you turn, people are screaming, "We're in a recession!" I find those words in every other mouth as I walk through midtown, on the radio of every disc jockey as I am riding along the New Jersey Turnpike, and on the lips of every newscaster as I sit on my couch and surf the channels looking to catch a good episode of Gossip Girls. It has become hard to ignore the current economic conditions that we are living in and painful to face a brutal fact that we are living through bad economic times.
I am a strong believer in God and faithfully study the mind and how it works, so I have chosen NOT to participate in this recession, and am declaring daily that I am prospering and having good success within my acting career, in hope that my faith, coupled with the words that I speak, are willing continued prosperity my way. Make no mistakes about it, since I do not know how long and painful these economic conditions will be, I have come up with a few ways, as a back up plan, to continue to help build my career through potentially the worst financial crisis to date all the while continuing to at least maintain my savings account as well as build it!
To all my fellow actors, actresses and models, here's how to survive the recession and build a career simultaneously. Remember this is a system put in place to help you survive these financially crippling times, by limiting your output of money, while gaining knowledge, developing your network, and prospering within your career. Although, I have listed ways only for the particular groups of people above, I'm sure some of these suggestions could work for other entertaining professionals as well.
How to use what you know to learn, grow, and make money during this Recession
Check Craigslist regularly to see if any photographers are doing TFP's. TFP means time for print. Sometimes you can find a photographer who is trying to hone their skills and is willing to shoot an actor/actress/model for no money, in exchange for time. Sometimes, you may even find an experienced photographer that is trying out his new, inventive ideas and he posts for models to pose while he perfects his craft. It's a great way for both persons to build their porfolio. And usually with no money exchanged.
Check out free acting and business workshops. In these workshops, you can usually gain some business insight, or acting tips that can really go a long way in your career. The flip side is that the person leading the workshop or classes, will 9 times out of 10 pitch to you why you should take their 6 or 8 weeks class intensives or workshops. I do suggest however, that if you really like their teaching and techniques, that you should certainly take their class later when the economy has made a turn for the better and you feel safer spending your money.
Sit in a drama book store and read acting and audition books, and take GOOD notes, then on your own time you can apply the notes.
Go to networking events, pre-filming parties, or premeire's for upcoming films and get your networking game on! More than likely, you will be surrounded by many director's, actors, producers, and the likes with whom you can get to know, who can protentially put you in their next film, or stage play. (please visit my networking blog to be trully successful at networking).
Look at trade papers to see what films/stage plays casting directors are auditioning for, go to acting studios where you know they hold auditions and check the doors to each studio to see what auditions are being held. Ask the person taking headshots what you need to perform for the audition and ask if you could get in on the audition. Sometimes, this will work, and sometimes it won't. Do not harrass the person for an audition! Also, Be prepared to wait.
Ask if you can work as a reader at a casting directors agency. There, you can learn a lot of priceless information about the business of acting and the skill itself. They may even allow you to get on tape too! If not, you can pick up a lot of "tricks" that actors use, and most importantly, see what works at an audition and what doesn't. PRICELESS.
Work as an intern for agents. You can slide your headshots in the pile for roles that you are interested in. Just be prepare to give a good audition! Also, you can get the inside scoop on which directors are doing what.
Hang out at the SAG, AEA and AFTRA offices. Chances are you will meet people who know mounds of information about what is going on in these union communities. You also over hear a lot of conversations about upcoming auditions, parties, and networking events. Word of mouth goes a long way.
Instead of buying sheet music, or acting books, use the library to copy the scores of your favorite songs, or copy pages of information that you find valuable and want to read and have handy.
Lastly, research the lives of others who are doing what you want to do, well-known star actors and or people you may personally know that seem to be succeeding in their careers and follow their process step by step. This is a great way to succeed, and saving years learning from their experience and proven success.
TIP FOR THE DAY: Remember people, you pay for what you get! So, while these are great ways to continue growing while surviving this recession, you should by no means make this a way of life. Don't cheat yourself or your career. Always, think, act and be at the top of your intelligence when it comes to your career. And in order to do this, you have to invest in yourself first before anyone else will seriously consider investing their time and money into you.
Wednesday, January 14, 2009
Every moment is a networking opportunity. Whether at a social gathering, or on the Internet, you are always in a situation to meet and get to know new people, or learn something new about the people you already know. In every social environment people are talking, on and on, about what they do, who they know, where they are going, what they are in need of… the list goes on! But the latter of them all, is where I’d like to draw your attention to and hopefully get you to understand the true meaning of Networking and its art form.
Networking is not only about meeting as many people as you can, meeting the upper echelon of people, or meeting the right person who can get you where you need to be, but, it is about listening and fulfilling the needs of the people you meet. Yes, you heard me! Networking is about meeting, listening, and giving. And, is less about meeting and receiving. If you only consider the two definitions above, then this means you are a selfish net worker. And God only knows the effects selfishness can have on other aspects of your life!
I like to compare the art of networking to the art of lovemaking and mastering relationships. They are strangely very similar. I’m sure by now, most of you, if not all, are laughing at the comparison and probably think I am some out of her mind, freak! But there are truly a lot of comparisons between networking, relationships, and lovemaking. I list them below in two categories, DO's and DONT's.
The Do's and Dont's of Networking, Relationships and Lovemaking:
Make your self known
Listen to the other person while he/she is talking
Call or email the next day
Take your time getting to know
Date the other person first
Stimulate other before getting what you want
Again, take your time
Satisfy and I guarantee you will be satisfied
Wait for the person to talk to you first, go after what you want
Stare outwardly while other person is talking; looking for the next person you could get to know
Forget to call or email within the next 72 hours
Rush getting to know
Call only when you want something from them
or say you will call and don't
Don’t only think about what you can get out of the deal
Don't get what you need; never to be heard of again
This is not a one night stand- don’t think of it like one. Consider courting this one.
When you meet a potential alliance, listen to what they are talking about. Let's say you are conversing with someone who can in fact, get you where you need to go...(as an actress, I like to imagine myself having a conversation with Gus Van Sant or Tyler Perry), and just for the fun of it, let's say the conversation we are having is very generic-neither here nor there. Regardless, I stay alert and enthusiastic about the convo, because at some point, Tyler will say something meaningless like, "I just bought a new dog that keeps me up barking all night," or Van Sant may say to a waiter, "No thanks, I'm not drinking tonight, I need to loose this gut." And while that seems like something too foolish to take heed to, the next day I am researching the "New and Improved" earplugs that keeps out the sounds of barking dogs, or a health and fitness article that says, "if you only drink one glass of red wine and chase it down with 3 glasses of water, you have a better chance of not putting any added weight around your midsection!" I know this may sound dumb to you and you may say that I am going to far, but, the next day when I am following up with Tyler Perry and Van Sant with an email (from their business cards), I remind them who I am, telling them it was nice chatting with them and suggesting they read a really funny article I happened to have stumbled across that morning about, dog barking-proofed ear plugs, or an article on, "drinking with out gaining weight", and send it with the attachments, I bet they will remember me the next time they see me or, the next time I decide to contact them asking if I could audition for their next films they are working on because I am a huge fan!
Listening, gives you a chance at helping the next person who is in need; no matter how frivolous the need. Networking is like fulfilling a void in someone’s life. But because you were listening to them sincerely, and take the opportunity to fulfill a need of something they were talking about, you put yourself in a position to be a receiver in the long run.
I even listen closely to my friends and associates needs and try to help out whenever I can. I often, call a friend and invite them to sit in on my acting class for free, because I feel they can learn or grow from that day's teaching. I may send an email to a person asking how I can help them on an upcoming project they are working on, just because. Sometimes, I will offer to help someone pack right before moving.
A few years ago, I was producing, and directing a sketched comedy show, Guudtimez, a parody of the 1970's sitcom Good Times, and my budget was running low-very low. A few friends and family members came together to help me, because I was not able to pay staff to help usher, or to work the box office or to clean up the makeshift theater afterwards. At the shows end, I was speaking to a close friend because I felt really bad that I wasn't able to give anything to the people who helped me during the run of my show, and she said to me, "Squeaky, don't you realize that we were all there to help you because you have helped us so many times before, we are just paying you back!" And it made me feel so relieved. That's when I learned that the true art of Networking was not what you get, but what you give!
TIP of the Day:
Go through all of your email contacts and send a quick email to 10 people you haven't connected with in a while, asking what they are up too, and letting them know you were just touching base with them. When they respond to you, see where you can be of assistance to them and offer it to them letting them know that you you are available to help if they need it.
Thursday, January 1, 2009
With the Oscar nominations right around the corner, it is important for me to recognize a few great talents who otherwise may have gone unnoticed. It is so easy to get swept up by the buzz of big budget films and the mainstream stars who act in them. However, there are some truly amazing talents that go unrecognized.
I'm not only speaking of great filmmakers like Tyler Perry, who is certainly making his mark in this world; a great storyteller with a voice demanding to be heard, or Taraji P. Henson, who was loved even when she was considered just "another black, female actress" on Baby Boy, or who played the charming and engaging, Shug, on Hustle & Flow, and who is now being considered for an Oscar in The Curious Case of Benjamin Button. But, there are also great filmmakers, writers and actors, who have worked on small or ultra low budget films, with creative dialogue, and intense storytelling; whose films have been neglected of mention. I would like to encourage these filmmakers, actors, directors and writers to keep pursing and developing their talents. How do you think such great filmmakers like Ron Howard and Tyler Perry got their start. I'm sure it was due to their persistence with pursuing their passions.
One thing that makes a film great and nomination worthy, in my opinion, is the storytelling which not only includes the direction, but the acting, editing and other technical aspects as well. Along side of storytelling, is the influence the movie has on the viewer which also plays a role and makes the film a stand out.
As an actress, I love analyzing the actors personal character choices and truthfulness which shows in the performances of great Oscar nominated roles of actors like Meryl Streep in Bridges of Madison County, or Oscar winning roles of Denzel Washington in Training Day and Glory, and even the depicted future Oscar winner, Jeffrey Wright, whose performance as Peoples in Shaft, and Belize in Angels in America were riveting.
With great reverence, and in high esteem, I would like to nominate a few directors, writers, actors, and actresses who stand out and are worthy to be mentioned. Though they are on a smaller scale as far as budgets go and mainstream status quo, they are certainly making a mark and should be recognized, as they will not be a best kept secret for long.Without further or do, the 2008 Contenders List for The Moore Squeaky Award includes 6 films that I consider to be at the top of the underrated and underexposed “GREAT “ indie films of 2008. My definition of “GREAT”, encompass these categories: concept, picture, actor, actress, director and screenplay. While, I do not claim to know all who will emerge as A-list filmmakers, writers, actors and actresses, I can definitely say these are people to watch out for.
2008-2009 Moore Squeaky Award Season Contenders
And the Moore Squeaky Award Nomination goes to....
Chester Jones III, Hey Diddle, Diddle
Ephraim Benton, Three Quarters of Face Value
Mark Harris , I Used to Love Her
Damian Bailey, Surrender
The Best Screenplay
Hey Diddle, Diddle, Chester Jones III
I Used to Love Her, Mark Harris Surrender, Damian Bailey
Three Quarters of Face Value, Ephraim Benton
Best Upcoming Actress:
Toya Turner, I Used to Love Her
Anissa Chalmers, Surrender
Sheree Bynum, I Used to Love Her
Best Upcoming Actor
Chester Jones III, Hey Diddle Diddle
Ephraim Benton, Three Quarters of Face Value
Mel Roberson, I Used to Love Her
Best Screenplay Concept
Miles Maker , The Making of Brooklynn
Miles Maker, A Ticket for Hope Damian Bailey, Surrender
Click on the links below to view complete profile for each contender for the Moore Squeaky Awards
Chester Jones III, Hey Diddle Diddle:
Official Website: www.whereismadmax.com
Mark Harris, I Used to Love Her:
Miles Maker, A Ticket for Hope & The Making of Brooklynn:
Damian Bailey, Surrender:
Sheree Bynum, I Used to Love Her:
Trailer: http://www.urbanworld.org/urban_films_narative_features.cfm IMDB: http://www.imdb.com/name/nm2277874/
Mel Roberson, I Used to Love Her
Annisa Chalmers, Surrender:
Ephraim Benton, Three Quarters of Face Value
TIP #1 for the day:As an artist, you should be thinking of ways (at least three); things you could do to take your career to the next level.
As an actress, I do not wait for the phone to ring to be invited to an audition, Instead I am a catalyst; causing change to take place in my life.
TIP #2 for the day:
Make an effort to communicate with all of the directors that you have worked with and one’s that you’ve wanted to work with. See if they have upcoming films they are directing that you can audition for. Then send an email or a note on facebook, or myspace letting the director know that you would love to audition for their upcoming film with your resume, headshot and reel or video of your work attached.
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