I'm tired of going every Thursday night and singing my heart out. It's great experience, and the most valuable part is getting feedback from other performers. But then the inevitable happens. The after show schmooze. "Why aren't you performing? When will we see you on Broadway? What on earth are you doing here? Why aren't you out there? Doing things?" And when I try to explain life's amusing little curve ball they "Wish me the best" and can't wait until they can "tell people they knew me when I was just a cocktail waitress/Front Desk Clerk/ Singing on Thursday nights." And they invariably end with "Well you're great, you need to just get out there and I'm sure things will happen for you."
It brings to mind the phrase "damning you with faint praise." Not quite. But its all well and good for all these people to wish me the best and all, but really I wish they wouldn't. I leave every time feeling like I have all the talent in the world, but I'm wasting it here. Don't they realize that the phrase "starving artist" isn't a kitsch metaphor but a blatant reality? It costs money to put together the demos, the headshots, the videos, the CD's, the resumes on nice quality paper, the packets, the postage to mail the packet, the postage to mail the packet again when the agent didn't look at it the first time, the postage to mail all of the "I hope you got my packet, here's what I'm up to now, and I'm going to keep bugging you until you represent me/give me a job/ let me audition for you" letters. Not to mention gas to get to the auditions, and air fare to the far away ones, lodging, food while you're there. And before you go you have to get a haircut and your nails done so you look professional.
I'm not complaining (well I am today, but most days I accept it as part of the business), but I do with all of these people would stop "well wishing." The honest admiration is very heartening. I really appreciate people who tell me they enjoyed the performance, or that I'm comparable to any performer they've seen when they traveled to _____. What they could knock off is all of the comments about "why aren't you ......?" If they really want to see me "get out there/up there/over there and perform then they need to put their money where their mouth is or shut up.
I'm sorry for all of you who are getting the brunt end of today's discouragement. On the way home last night Grandma started talking about I just need to pray that God's will be done. Which I do. And I trust that his will is the best for me. But the interminable waiting is discouraging...