In 2019, You define training. We’re just here to inspire.
Mason Alexander Park for Training for Broadway 2019.
“I’ve always been a little confused with what exactly “training” meant as an artist in particular, because to me just about anything we do counts towards my training and preparation. All of our life experiences, no matter how insignificant, are what we use to build and tell stories, which are also based on someone else’s own experience with the world. So in a way, some of the best training I’ve ever received has happened when I watched and listened to the world around me, and observed how both myself and others dealt with different situations we’ve been thrust into as time has gone on. That’s my annoying cerebral answer. The other half of what training means to me is mainly focused on preparation, and what it means to be as ready as you possibly can for a specific challenge, socially, artistically, or otherwise. There is no moment in which you will ever tap out or be at your “peak” when you’re a performer, similarly to being a professional athlete. There’s never a moment where a singer has hit the perfect number of voice classes and suddenly is in prime condition 10 contracts in tow, we don’t level up after accumulating enough experience points honing a skill, because talent and success is all relative and unfortunately life isn’t a video game. Training is just kicking your own ass and pushing yourself as hard as you can so that you are as prepared as possible to accept the next challenge presented, and then work even harder toward the one following. As an actor, I try to keep my body and mind as healthy as possible so when certain opportunities arise, I’m in a better place to take a real crack at them. There are new hurdles that come with every audition and every job, when I took Hedwig and the Angry Inch I knew that I physically wanted to look and feel a certain way to help with my characterization and storytelling, so I did what I needed to do to vocally prepare myself and lose 30 pounds to help me slip into her shoes easier. I ate cleaner than I ever have, took voice lessons as often as possible, slept as much as I ever have, exercised almost every day, and did what I felt I needed to do in order to ready myself for what I consider one of the most challenging roles I’ve had the pleasure of playing. Was I still going to an ENT on tour praying I didn’t have vocal issues? OF COURSE. Do I look as snatched as I did when I was in Hedwig anymore? NOT EVEN CLOSE. Because at the end of the day we are always growing, learning, and training to get better at what we do. Success comes from being authentic and relatable at the right time, and being able to squeeze what makes you unique into a room of other people who are trying to do the same thing, and creating something out of that energy. Being the best version of yourself when that opportunity finally arises is what all of those life lessons, hardships, ballet classes, and gym sessions were for, and that’s what Training for Broadway means for me.”
Photo by Jane Jourdan