Life is Short
"It is our choices that show what we truly are, far more than our abilities."
- J.K Rowling
"This Above all: To your own self, be true." - William Shakespeare
Bruce William Stewart, is quite possibly the most influential person in my life, despite how cliché that seems. My father is a man with crystallized goals and expectations about how a respectable person should behave in society. Throughout instances in my life, he I have Simply been given fair choices, provided clear compromises and shown honesty, respect, fairness, and responsibility, I am able to look up to my father as the kind of hard-working individual I would someday like to be.
While growing up in South Africa, and being able to learn important lessons from my aunt, I decided that the best way to live was to be true to myself and be fair to those around me. My aunt also taught me patience, and to realize that a situation could be worse, therefore I should be grateful for what I have in my life. It also occurred to me that I should covet my own happiness and never be forced to settle for mediocrity.
Joyce was the founder of the Johannesburg Youth Theatre, whose teaching fed and began to develop my passion for theater, a passion that has become the foundation of who I am. She was the woman who gave me my first role in theater, and through her detailed direction she taught me how to find myself and to start using my own personality to help develop my character, despite how small the role was. I worked with her for three years, and throughout that time I learned that no role would ever be beneath me, and that once a part is cast, it would be pointless to try and fight it. All one can do is make the most out of a given situation and enjoy it.
On Graduation Day, in the early days of may in 2013, I will make the long walk across Front Campus of Greensboro College with the rest of my class in our caps and gowns, awaiting our diplomas. It will be a bittersweet day, in which pictures are taken, goodbyes are said, and a realization that a new journey is about to begin. I have spent the past 4 years working hard academically to earn a 3.75 G.P.A, and managed to be Stage Manager for the majority of the shows, be it a one Act or a main stage musical. Although it is amazing to be moving on and starting a life of my own, i cannot imagine being out of the protective bubble that has kept me safe from the real world for so long.
I can only hope that one day, years after I graduate, that I remember that day with my friends, and know that these truly were the best four years of my life. The Best way to celebrate all our friendships was to have one last party, on the main stage in Odell, with fog machines, pizza, and outrageous costumes to commemorate all the previous theme parties. It will truly be a bittersweet symphony, but in the end, I hope to have no regrets.
THE ACADEMY AWARDS
My greatest goal in life is to either be a production manager or stage manager for the Academy Awards, or be a nominee for cinematography. As long as I can remember, I have always loved motion pictures, whether they are small budget independent films, or blockbuster hits. My father always says that if i could be a professional movie watcher, i would be the best at it. He would watch in awe when we had our family movie nights at how my eyes would be filled with excitement. Whatever direction my path leads, I hope that I am able to be a part of the world i love so much.
However, In order to accomplish that dream, I know that somewhere along the line I will go to the Los Angeles Film School, and Sundance, to make connections and begin my journey with Film.
LOS ANGELES FILM SCHOOL
In order to accomplish my dream of being involved in film, I decided the best way to get a head start was to move to Los Angeles, where the magic of movies lives.
The school is a graduate style program over 3 years in which I would be able to learn hands on the art of cinematography and directing for the screen. Although it is a cut-throat business, I believe that as long as there is perseverance and desire, anything is possible.
Before I begin my journey to film, it is a realistic idea that before I play with the sharks on the big screen, I would need to stretch my legs in calmer waters. I first went to New York city when i was twelve years old. It was then that I experienced my first taste of Broadway, and from that point I was completely hooked. I always dreamed of being under the spotlight, but now my dream is to control and make the magic, Therefore, I aspire to make my way up the Broadway ladder, going from Stage Management intern, to Assistant Stage Manager, then Stage Manager, and hopefully at one point, Director. It would be lots of slave labor at the beginning, just like everything else in life, so my motivation will be opening night, when even my minimal contributions made a difference.
NEW YORK UNIVERSITY
One of the graduate Schools on my list is the Graduate Program at NYU. Its biggest appeal is that it is in New York, which means I'll have easy access to Broadway as well as Off-Broadway for a start. I've always thought it was a great school for both theater and film, which will therefore allow me to learn about both of my passions.
YALE SCHOOL OF DRAMA
However, if at the end of four years at Greensboro College I decide I want to stick with more serious theater and stage manage in Europe, my first choice of schools would be the Yale School of Drama. This program would be ideal for me because of how it focuses on classical theater, which is the foundation of all other types of theater. However, the only way to even begin to make that step is to ensure that i remain dedicated to both my academic and theater responsibilities, and find the balance between them, hoping that an impeccable resume and flawless transcript would entitle me to a full scholarship.
THE BERKSHIRE THEATRE FESTIVAL
Even though I have all of these dreams and aspirations of life after college, I know that one experience I want to be involved in is the Berkshire Theatre festival in Massachusetts each year during the summer. I realize that as a rising sophomore will mean i would have to be a stage managing intern, but hopefully by the end of three years I would be able to stage manage a show or be an assistant stage manager, and be able to build my resume and make connections that could possibly make my career. It seems like the perfect opportunity to work far away from home, as it will help me grow as an individual and develop skills that I have already begun to learn.
(A Note from a Very Proud Dad)
Sarah is now in the final year of her Graduate Degree at the University of Cincinnati's College Conservatory of Music where she expects to graduate with an M.F.A. Cum Laude or better in 2016.
Her website shows an interesting parallel and contrast between her dreams and reality.