PINK HULK PANELIST! On July 24, I was so honored to be on the Industry Insight Series Panel at The American Academy of Dramatic Arts–my alma mater–on Producing and Creating Your Own Work. It was an amazing time with these fantastic students and my awesome fellow panelists David Dean Bottrell, James Kautz and Alexander Pepperman. Thanks to Jon-Michael Hernandez, Jennifer Smolos (our moderator) and AADA NY for the opportunity to share the creation/producing of my solo show The Pink Hulk and how it went from page to stage! I was so struck by the students. They were so engaged during the discussion and asked such great questions. I found myself fighting back tears as I told that group how this journey with The Pink Hulk is one of the greatest joys in my life and would not change a thing I have done. There is nothing better than giving people hope and empowering them. There were 7 of the students from this group that stayed after with me, asking more questions. I had no idea that an hour had passed after the event was over. I could have talked with them for hours. In fact, I was the last to leave the building from that event. I like to be the first to arrive and the last to leave with any event or party I attend! LOL!
There is nothing more satisfying than helping students along with their careers. When I was at the Academy, I remember how much I loved when we had guest speakers or a panel. My favorite memories are when Victor Garber and Mercedes Ruehl were celebrity guest speakers–I am a huge superfan. I was so inspired by them. In fact, just last year, I ran into Ms. Ruehl at Dixon Place and came right up to her to thank her for the great advice she gave us back then and how I was blown away when she told my class that studios in the East Village were $250 a month back in the ’60s!–we had a great laugh about that! And I remember when she came to speak to us, that one day, I hoped that I could be in a position to be on a panel or be a guest speaker, and share what I have learned along the way with others, as she had done. And it has come true.