Happy Monday! Prior to last week’s video recap, I wrote a post on the magic of healing in Moana, as well as a piece on facing your fears! I’d mentioned before that I’ve been taking class at the Groundlings, and I wanted to talk about that a little bit today.
At my core, I'm a deeply spiritual and philosophical person. I think life is magical and possesses so much simple, natural beauty that we (myself included) often take for granted. I am constantly reading about different philosophers, their philosophies, and how and why things work the way they do. One of my favorite classes I took at Villanova (where I went to college) was a class called "Philosophy of Sex and Love" that looked at the framing and understanding of different types and different stages of love and attachment. The classwork urged us to take an in-depth look at sociological norms and the commonly-accepted 'rules' of sex and love in order to help us better understand how and why so many people approach relationships differently.
It's so important to seek different philosophies when building something you're passionate about because knowledge is power. It’s important to seek growth, and in order to do that, you have to seek different points of view and different perspectives to gain a better understanding of how things work and what works for you. We all have different experiences in life that help shape and form us into the people we become. Those experiences help us grow in a number of ways. There are even experiences we have that may not seem to be meaningful as they’re happening that end up being way more meaningful than we could have ever imagined. I think everything has meaning, but that meaning also lies on a spectrum of importance. Sometimes the meaning of something is just as simple as "I like it," which is another way of saying that it brings you joy. That's why I wanted to do comedy, and it's why I do musical comedy as much as I do. In order to truly be able to make fun of something, you have to love it. The best comedy comes out of love and admiration for the craft.
The Groundlings teaches improvisational comedy, but it does not teach the same philosophy as UCB. At UCB, you learn about the “game” of a scene - what makes a scene funny. At Groundlings, the focus is more on heightened emotional work and relationships. Both schools start with the same fundamentals - listening, 'yes and-ing', commitment - but then take different views of how to build the comedy.
Have you ever heard the (c’mon, it’s disturbing) phrase ‘there’s more than one way to skin a cat?’ It’s an important cliche to remember when approaching anything in life. Not everyone is going to agree or do things the same way. Los Angeles has a few different improv schools that offer different philosophies, so it’s a good idea to study various approaches and then take the things that work best and ring the most true for you as a person.
No two people are going to be exactly the same because no two lives are exactly the same. Different things work for different people, which is why it’s important to try and get as many different perspectives and philosophies on a subject in order to figure out what works best for you.
I’ve been learning a lot about myself and my weaknesses in my Groundlings class, which makes me really happy. If you seek growth and you find it in a number of different philosophies, celebrate that process. You can use those different process experiences to turn your weaknesses into strengths. It’ll not only make you a better performer and artist, it will also make you a stronger, more well-rounded person.
Thank you so much for reading, and, as always, if you have any pressing questions or if you want to discuss something further with me, feel free to subscribe in the box below or reach out to me on the “contact” page. I’m so grateful you're here and that I’ve been getting a lot of really challenging questions and even better feedback from a community all over the world. I couldn’t do this without you! So THANK YOU! I’m here for you, and I love hearing from you, too! You’re the best, and you have everything you need inside of you! Please believe it! Starve your ego, feed your soul - and follow your heart!