‘You Are Never Too Old To Set Another Goal Or To Dream A New Dream’ (C.S.Lewis)

‘Sometimes you just have to follow your heart, do what you always wanted to do, or “Dream the Impossible Dream” and be a bit of a Don Quixote in your own way.  And so I did! Thereby ticking off yet another item on my “Bucket List”.

Just before I took up all my courage to walk into the doors of the Gaiety School of Acting’s offices in Dublin this July to sign up as a Student for the Advanced Performance Year my mind was working overtime…. What will they think or say to me? You are too old, too big, too small, too short, too tall, whatever my core negative beliefs about myself keep telling me from time to time….. Plus the fact that English is not my native language made me all the more hesitant.

None of all of the above! Of course not, it was all in my mind. A friendly and welcoming smile awaited me and within a minute my doubts, insecurities and fears of rejection that I had formulated in my head just vanished. I knew, I wanted to do this and I must have portrayed this in my audition, so I got accepted and started the Advanced Performance Year on the 30th September.

Before the commencement of this part time course, I also attended the one day workshop “Scriptwriting Hothouse” with Michelle Manahan and the Accent Workshop with Russell Smith. In July. After living in Ireland for more than 10 years I had been so drawn into the abundance and omnipresence of creativity and cultural activity in this country, even in the smaller communities. I couldn’t help but joining a Choir and a Singing Circle, Amateur Dramatics, a Creative Writing Club within the first years of residing here. It was just there, outside my door!

It had been on my mind for a number of years now to take this a step further, but there was always something else that kept me from doing what I wanted to do. A most unfulfilling and much hated daytime job, bringing up children, other family duties.

Let alone an inner censor that kept me from believing in myself or as mentioned above it probably seemed more important to keep up appearances, my head down and do what I thought was expected of me.

I guess my motivation to write this today is to encourage people of all ages, shapes and sizes or indeed nationalities to overcome their fears in a tendency to think that “Creative dreams are egotistical and something that God or other people wouldn’t approve of for us” (Julia Cameron “The Artists Way”), and dismiss these thoughts that are holding you back.

Well, Week 2 of the Advanced Performance Year has just finished and I have already met so many wonderful and interesting people and different personalities and made new friends. First evening, exciting to meet Director Patrick Sutton and Teachers Antoinette Duffy and John Delaney and seeing most helpful Karen Lee again. The second session took us to the Smock Alley Theatre to see “Spinning” by Deirdre
Kinahan, a great experience and proof of fantastic contemporary Irish Drama. And so it is into the routine of Tuesday and Thursday evenings of studying and enjoyment.

Advanced Performance Year 2014 – BRING IT ON! ‘

Dagmar A. Baar