The day I truly let go and started creating with my soul! My life in NYCBlog
“Ok - you can either pretend to do it, embarrass yourself completely, be the cute little shy girl that just couldn’t do it; or you go all in.
Give it your all! Show what lies within you: You know you have it in you! They want you to be bold. They want you to be wild. They demand you to not be beautiful. And nobody will even see your face!
This inner monologue I had with myself while shooting a featured movie. I was cast as a body double for the main actress and ended up doing several more scenes for her, without showing my face.
It wasn’t planed for me to do so many of the scenes but due to several circumstances ended up being that way and I absolutely loved it. I love acting and I do think due to my ballet and dance training have at least some knowledge of expressions and such, but I was (and still am) always scared about verbal acting or speaking roles. My plan therefore was to start with doing body double roles where I can act without talking. And so I did. I just wasn’t expecting it to turn into a much bigger role. The team was amazing and I loved the role and my parts. But I was scared as my mind played tricks on me: You never learned to be an actor, you have no education, you will look ugly and stupid. We all know this voice just too well. It is showing up way too often in our head, stopping us from just doing things, going all in and trying new things.
But here I was. It was this kind of situation that is just completely out of your comfort zone and yet I was so incredibly grateful to be in it!
A little more insight: My whole life as a teenager, especially in my ballet and dance school times, I was taught to look pretty, to create beautiful lines, to “always be prepared for the perfect picture”. Every move you make must be 100% so it would look good on a picture. With these words burned into my brain and being a perfectionist to begin with, I was afraid of letting go!
By letting go, it may not look good or pretty enough. I could risk the fact that it’s not up to part and doesn’t have the quality always aimed and asked for: if I control all I do it is what it should be. This mindset made me a wonderful technical dancer. And at all my auditions I passed the technical part (barre) without any problems. But when it came to the center or the performing part a lot of people told me: there is something missing. “You gotta let go” “Relax”.
I just didn’t know how. How to let go, relax and deliver perfect results?
To be honest, back then I didn’t even understand what they were actually talking about or what they meant! It made me quite mad! So we practice precision for hours and hours a day and no you are telling me to let go? What are you talking about? The last several years we practiced day in and day out to be perfect, corrected every inch that wasn’t in line or perfect, tweaked every position to get it right and now you are telling me it is not good enough?
I was frustrated, because I felt like I couldn’t practice to let go. I can practice to get the lines right but how to practice to let go?
Fast forward and based on many decisions (that have nothing to do with this fact) I decided to not be a performing dancer anymore but use my dance skills to be a model, to express my emotions to create! I loved my time as a dancer and performer and I cherished my time in the company but it was time to move on. It was then that I had no pressure anymore to get the job, to be technically perfect! (Believe me there was still a lot of pressure but at least not when it comes to finding dance/ballet jobs).
And all of a sudden I got job offers left and right. Yes I lost a bit of my techniques for sure but I danced. I danced with my soul. I used dance to lose myself, to express myself to let go and not to control myself and shut down my feelings by discipline!
Those are 2 incredibly different ways of approaching ballet. They both work, they are both necessary but until then I just knew one way of dancing!
It was not until that moment, when I did this part of the role for the movie, that I could really truly let go and give it my all. My emotions – my deepest darkest thoughts. I didn’t care if it could look wrong, ugly, weird or too much. I just portrait the character the way I felt it to be. I created with my soul!
I had to act for a thriller. It was a night mare scene. I was running through a forest (pretty dark and moody, without going into details).
It was easier to take the leap because I knew they wouldn’t actually show my face as I was just the body double and I had a wig covering my face. I also realized by not delivering and just trying to look beautiful and perfect I would risk more embarrassment and failure than not.
I felt like in my own world: WHAT IF – what would you do if you just follow your instincts, feel and wouldn’t care what people think. If you are not afraid of failure- how would you do it?
And that is exactly what I did. I focused on the results, what and how I wanted to create emotions, and stopped listening to the nagging voices.
It was a sense of freedom that I have hardly had before, at least not in this kind of sense!
Until now I made the best decisions when I acted on questioning myself What if?
Surprisingly I think we all know what we want to do, how we want to do it. Very often we burry the idea and the thought before it even has a chance to develop and put into action. I understand: It is scary, very often it is also caused due to self-doubt and let’s be fair Is also easier to find an excuse to not leave the comfort zone!
What would you do, if you couldn’t fail? What if nothing bad would happen, what if everything is possible if you truly put your mind to it? What if you give it your all? Because even if you fail you at least know you gave it your all and didn’t just try it halfhearted!
Luckily the movie was a success and the team were happy with my performance. But the feeling of going all in no matter what was priceless!
Here for you: some behind the scene shots from the movie!