I look back over this last year and I am floored with how many blessings have been poured out upon me. Not everything has been easy, but everything has had a point. Let's do a year end recap, shall we?
I started off this year doing And Then They Came For Me: Remembering the World of Anne Frank. The point was focus and representing the theatre to the best of my ability.
In June, I opened reasons to be pretty. There's no question that it's been the biggest challenge of my professional career up to now. The point was building stamina and proving that I could do serious contemporary, not to mention working together with a brand new theatre company.
Right after that was Sally and Glen at The Palace for the Essential Theatre Festival. The point was that there are parts out there that are written for me, whether or not the author is aware of that fact. To have had the opportunity to bring Glen to life on stage was such a thrill, and I truly can't say enough nice things about Peter Hardy's script. I hope, hope, hope that I'll be able to see Glen again.
In August, I came back to the Shakespeare Tavern to do A Midsummer Night's Dream. The point was that Demetrius doesn't have to be a jerk. He doesn't. And it served as a reminder of how much I miss that place.
In September, I was in Unnecessary Farce at Stage Door Players. Getting to work with Robert (of course), Carrie, Annie, Holly, Larry, John, Allan and Leslye was a great experience, as always. The point from this one is maybe the most important one that I've learned all year. It is important to be valued. I'm absolutely bowled over by the love that place shows me every time I go in there.
Finally, in October, I went back to middle school at The Alliance. During the run of Middle School The Musical, I learned so much about myself and all of my castmates. I truly hope they bring us back again next year to have another go 'round. Working with Rosemary is always a pleasure. No one is a bigger fan than me. The point of MSM was, really, the point of the year. Wasn't sure I could make it, but I was shown how.
This coming January, come see me in AUTOBAHN (One Night Only!) for PnO.
This coming February, come see me in Fat Pig at The Aurora and see if I crash and burn or prove my mettle. This is, truly, one of the only plays I'm afraid of. We'll see how it goes.
This coming March, come see me in Academy ALSO at The Aurora and try to not notice that this is an actual, honest to God musical I'm doing, which is something I never thought I would professionally do.
This coming April, come see me again in Midsummer at The Tavern as we bring it back for a full run. Last time was just a tester. During this run, I fully anticipate beautiful things blooming.
Nothing after that. But just because I've got work now, don't for a second think that I'm letting up. It is in my nature to hustle and I'm still a hungry actor.
This year, I've gotten to work with new companies. I've got to play leads and show that it isn't a mistake to give me a big workload. I've been back on stage at The Alliance, rapping like nobody's business. I wore a kilt for Robert Egizio. And even got on stage at the place that I still consider my home in Atlanta.
I look back on this year and I marvel that I had theatrical employment (Not even counting Kidstuf and reThink!) in all of them except December. I look forward on this next year and marvel that my first five months are already booked.
I will direct you to a blog post that I made last year where I said, "2010 is my year... Mark it, kids."
Well, holy crap if it didn't happen.
Here's the thing, though. I have to keep building. I have to keep striving. I have to stay hungry and I have to keep on the hustle. And I will. I will enjoy the moment, but I will not take a second of it for granted, because I know it could all be gone in a moment.
Lord, thank you. Ain't possible without you.
2009 was my year on the cusp. 2010 was the beginning of me actually having a career in Atlanta. 2011 will be my breakthrough.
2011 is my year... Mark is kids.