"The label you give yourself cannot impact external forces that are not motivated by your own psychology or influenced by a third party's pre-existing consciousness of you. We are all presented with reasons to struggle which come from completely external forces; to pretend that one is not struggling is either arrogance or an admission of defeat. To admit that one is struggling is a sign and a source of strength." - Evan A. Baker

Saturday, February 4, 2012

A Degree in Pretend is Useful!

Who knew, right?

Here is a freaking fantastic article about how being a theatre major prepared Tom Vander Well for Success.

And I'm sure many of you will be able to relate. I myself work as a business consultant and communications manager, and I would like to say that it is because of degree in pretend I know how to do many of the things my job requires of me.

I like to refer to it as my Degree in Pretend (I also have a minor in making up stories) to highlight how crazy having a theatre degree is, but everything I learned in school: the empathy, all the producing, taking a cast of 27 and creating a product that affects 700 people.... They are all relative to the job I have now, which requires a lot of creativity and business sense.

But I'd like to add something else - getting our theatre degree also prepares us for Following Our Dream, and having the perseverance to continue to do what we truly love. I know so many who fear leaving the jobs they're no longer happy at, but we aren't afraid of the unknown. The guts of going onstage, in front of hundreds, with the possibility of so many things going wrong, helps us understand that if we have spent hours, days, weeks, studying and rehearsing, for This Moment, we are going to be FINE. And if we aren't, we'll improvise.

All invaluable life skills.

It's a great, and inspiring read.  I'd love to know your thoughts and how a degree in pretend has helped you in the real world too. 

1 comment:

  1. Right now, I'm lucky enough to get paid to teach acting(whenever I'm not actually acting). However, I have worked a bunch of crappy jobs unrelated to my theater degree, and some non-so crappy jobs that were also unrelated to my theater degree. For some reason, I always seemed to come back to retail and sales, even though that really isn't my favorite non-creative field to work in.

    In sales positions, I always felt like I was able to relate to my customers. Maybe this came from learning Meisner... "living truthfully under imaginary circumstances" -- (i.e. having to sell a product even when I don't really care about it).

    I feel like my theater degree has always come in handy.


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