I am currently spending my summer in New Jersey as an acting apprentice with the Shakespeare Theatre of New Jersey.
It is an amazing training program that I am blessed to be a part of. Every day I learn something new and push myself to better my skills as an actress. I keep a journal which is something I recommend that everyone does if they are at an internship because it helps insure that you will not forget anything that you have been taught and you will be able to utilize your experience far down the line.
I am also blogging/vlogging for an independent study at my college. I am learning so much and getting to meet some amazing people. Along with all of this positive aspects comes the parts that are a little difficult.
The other day, I felt myself feeling homesick for the first time ever. I ended a call with my mom and actually almost cried. Now this may also be because I am tired and a little stressed, but it was a new experience for me. I really missed my home and my family and friends.
Now there are a few remedies to this sadness. The first step is letting yourself feel it. It is okay to be homesick because guess what everyone feels that way at some point in their life. The next step is finding ways to feel connected to your home. I personally called my best friend and talked to her for about three hours about what we both have been up to. These was such a help for me because I usually get to talk to her almost every day in person and this being in a whole different state is pretty difficult. It made me feel so much better!!
On top of getting the chance to talk to my mom and best friend, I have also found my people here. I have made friendships with some really great people which can be difficult for me because I am extremely introverted in new situations. Now that I have found people that I feel comfortable talking to and being around, it is easier to get through the harder days. I also have a support system that is more immediate than my friends and family who are at home.
I also have found that I am gaining courage in my acting and that I am learning to trust myself. I am throwing myself into my work and trying to get everything that I can out of this experience. The ability to learn about acting through so many different methods and teachers and to spend my day just working on my craft is an amazing feeling. I am also surrounded by people who want to push themselves as well and therefore help to push me even further.
I could not imagine a better way to spend my time than performing Shakespeare and doing exercises that work on my instrument (my body) through things like voice, viewpoints and clowning. On top of this, we have crew assignments where I get to expand my knowledge of working on scenic elements and currently costumes because I am on the wardrobe crew for the production that starts previews this week.
In short, when given an opportunity to spend time doing what you love and to improve yourself, take it!! It may come with some rough patches, but it is so worth it.