By Tambay A. Obenson | Shadow and Act July 31, 2013 at 11:45AM
Recapping... I did this in February of last year (2012), and got a few response, so I figured, a year-and-a-half later, with the site's audience now larger than it was back then, that I'd try it again.
I know that a significant chunk of S&A's audience comprises of actors, actresses, directors, DPs, editors, etc, etc, etc. Some are able to earn a paycheck utilizing their artistic and/or technical skills; others - and I'd say the majority - are what we've labeled the proverbial *starving artists*, working diligently, relentlessly, struggling to climb this incredibly steep hill, trying to reach some pinnacle of success - whether personal or professional. And still others exist somewhere between the former and the latter.
Where do you fall? And, as the title of this post states, what's YOUR story, and would you like to share it with the rest of the world?
Think of it as an extension of the successful S&A Filmmaker Diary series we launched almost 2 years ago. I'm looking for your individual stories of struggle and/or success, regardless of what rung on the ladder you are currently on, after all, not only is S&A just a source for news, its goal is also to become a community of cinema lovers where we can all share/debate/discuss/learn/teach/commiserate/etc.
Here's your chance. You might learn something; you might teach someone something.
What's YOUR story? You can email me (firstname.lastname@example.org). You can submit your story in any format - written, or even documented on video. I'll post as many of them as I can. Substance and presentation are key for consideration.
And be sure to attach a photo (large size) for me to include, and if you have samples of your work, include them as well.
It could be a story about a current situation you find yourself in; or it could cover several days, weeks, months, or years of your career. It could be that you just want to vent your frustrations; aspects of, or people in this business that piss you off; aspects of, or people in the industry that encourage you. It doesn't have to be all negative, nor all positive. We're complex people, and so I assume our stories are as well.
Hello,I am Brandi Huzzie. For the past two weeks sleep and peace of mind have been difficult to obtain since my soul hasn’t been at rest in wake of the Trayvon Martin verdict. I pray to God that justice have her way.I am a Los Angeles-based actor from Miami Carol City, FL. I moved here from the Upper Westside of Manhattan where I attended The American Musical & Dramatic Academy. For 8 months & at the age of 24, I lived with 2 women pursuing their acting careers in very close quarters; so close that I slept with my school books and 1 of my suitcases because there was not enough room in the inn. Although there was no room, there was plenty of mold. After my first two weeks of residence, I was sent to the hospital from my Stage Combat class because I was growing another neck, infected with bacteria. I spent 24+ hours in the crowded lobby of Roosevelt Hospital next to a seemingly homeless man whose lip was growing to the size of his face. It was cool though, because I was at The Roosevelt Hospital & that’s where John Lennon died.Other than that experience, I highly appreciated my tenure in New York. I had never been so focused and worked so hard in my life. Oh yeah, I forgot to mention that I left college, 2 classes short of getting a degree, to pursue acting. I could no longer fake the funk & after experiencing what it’s like to be doing what you love, I cannot go back.I left New York because the conservatory offered a bi-coastal program and I wanted to get the best of both worlds. I always saw myself living in Los Angeles. I just had to test New York’s concrete jungle to make sure I could brave it. I feel like a conqueror in those regards.Upon graduating from AMDA with a 3.6 grade point average, I lost a first cousin & an uncle in whom I was very close with. My prayer was that no one else from my family would leave this earth prior to us reaching the “promise land”, especially since the family is the reason for me uprooting.Subsequent to living with the sister of a hometown neighbor, I moved in with 5 actors in a 5 bedroom/2 bath townhome. By the end of that lease I had plenty of restful nights sleeping in my car as I was living with 7 different individuals.My professional acting career includes plays, booking a commercial agent from a walk-in audition, 3 buy-out commercials, a couple of music videos, having had films I’ve played as official selections to The Pan African Film Festival, Peachtree Village International Film Festival, Las Vegas Film Festival, Detroit Windsor Film Festival, Martha’s Vineyard Film Festival & airing on local television networks across America. In spite of, I’m still classified as a Non-Union actor with no current representation & 8/26/13 will make my 6th year anniversary of living in Los Angeles.My current situation is working at a career 9-5 as a Bookkeeper for a luxury apartment community in Beverly Hills “adjacent” where it’s apparent that I’m perceived as “the help”. The silver lining is that I currently live there as well.2013 has been quite burdensome as my 60+ year old parents have been battling the justice system in efforts to adopt my 1 month old, 1 year old & 3 year old cousins who are now wards of the State of Georgia. That has been their current situation since right before the untimely death of my maternal grandmother on Sunday, October 14, 2012. Her name is Pauline “Piggy” Mitchell of Kingsland, GA. Our conversations would always conclude with her reminder, “It’s coming, Brandi. It’s coming.”I long to be in the position I started this journey for. I believe I’m gifted in acting to be a blessing. I'm going to continue working in faith that it will come to pass.Thank you for this opportunity & God bless.
Here's my reel: