Monday, November 15, 2010

PLaserList

On any given day as I gently float down the streets of New York, falling flat on my face only occasionally to ensure all that I'm still human, you can find me with hot jams tickling my ear drums.  My steps punctuated by each firey beat, my fierce 'tude a mainline from the jam itself, the hits influence my very being.  I pound the pavement more often than I mold a chair so often the songs I choose carry me from first to last step and over the threshold to my home like a melodic groom.  I love music (and, yes, I would marry it) and so, by request from the lovely Ann Carr I present you with a few of my current obsessions in song or: My PLaserList.  (Pew pew pew... laser jams making a b-line to your brain!)

1. Girlfriend - Pebbles
My girl(friend) Pebbles knows how to tell it like it is!  I can think of a few times in the history of G that I should have heeded her fierce advice.  This song is way more than, "Cute.  Cute, cute, cute."

2. Ain't Nobody - Chaka Khan
I mean, can this be my wedding song?  Would that be cool with you guys?  Cuz I might insist on it.  Let this song wrap its charms around you.

3. The Girls Want to Be With the Girls - Talking Heads
Oh David Byrne, you get me.  (Er... Us.)  Hearts.

4. The Glamorous Life - Sheila E
Sheila E is here to remind us that being strong, independant women with big thoughts, big dreams (and a big brown mercedes sedan?) is great, but don't forget the most important thing in life: love.  Amen, girl.

5. Whip My Hair - Willow Smith
Ain't no shame in loving this song, whip it with me y'all!

6. Your Love - Nicki Minaj
Shawty Imma only tell you this once, you the illest (dat for dat dat dude), and for your lovin' Imma Die Hard like Bruce Willis.  You dig?

7. Right as Rain - Adele
Totally infectious and danceable plus Adele's killer voice.  Hot!

8. Valerie - Mark Ronson
Darling, how can you resist!?  I know I've got a hot jam on my hands when my Dead Head, jam band-loving lover gets down with it.  You simply can't resist!

9. Can't Hold Us Down - Christina Aguilera (ft. Lil' Kim)
This song has cheese pouring from it's bass licks, but it's insanely catchy and shoves girl power in your face.  Highly approve!

10. The Fame - Lady Gaga
Not the obvious choice, but my current obsession.  Boom!

11. Let's Stay Together - Tina Turner
Try not to think of her singing this to Ike and you'll do just fine.  Tinaaaa!

12. I Go To Rio - Peter Allen
You just can't stop this song!  Try it!  Go ahead and try it!  You can't, can you??  It's as hot as Rio!

13. I'm Not Your Toy - La Roux
This song is too good.  In fact I'd recommend the entire album.  Infectious beats, dangerous lyrics - dance hall Annie Lennox.  Totally obsessed.

14. Heads Will Roll - Yeah Yeah Yeahs
I just want to be drenched in sweat in the middle of the dance floor when this song comes on.  So hot.

15. Strut - Sheena Easton
Oh god this song is just... IT.  I can't listen to it sitting down - say, in a car - because I will bust out the door mid-drive and strut myself straight to the hospital.  It's that good.

And, at the risk of creating a hot one hundred hot list I'll stop at an even fifteen.  A nice, even fifteen.  (Shhh) Thus concludes my current music obsessions.  Enjoy!

Love,

Glennis

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Dear Lindsay

Giiiiirl, how are you?  No seriously - how are you?  Is everything OK?  Cuz it really doesn't feel that way.  Feels kind of like you're in a dark place with your arm stuck under a rock.  Like you were just walking along and then you fell in a crevasse and this rock pinned you and now you have to gnaw your arm off to get free.  Do you feel like gnawing your arm off?  That's just an analogy... I don't really think you want to gnaw an appendage off.  (Well, maybe your ankle LOL.)


Anyway, just checking in.  Call me!

Love,

Glennis

PS - I'm not saying I'm necessarily worried about you.  I know what a firecracker you are!  I know you'll bounce back!  It's just, well, you kind of seem blue.  And maybe, well, maybe like you're losing your mind a little.  And, listen, I totally get it.  I thank my stars I wasn't a child actor with fucked up parents.  (I was just a child with fucked up parents LOL.)  I mean life was hard enough as it was, but add millions of dollars to the mix and I can only imagine how you must feel!  So I toooootally get you.  I just want you to know that if you ever feel like talking I'm here.  CALL ME!

PPS - Just use your words, you know?  Use your words.

PPPS - Like if I did something to piss you off just TELL ME!  You know?  Just TELL ME.  OK, that's all.  Love ya!  xo

PPPPS - Because do I really need to say that I get you, man!  I get having a shitty relationship with your father and taking it out on yourself.  Boy do I get that.  I mean, sure, your dad is in a league of his own, but isn't the sentiment the same at the heart of the matter?  Anyway, I'm not sure what I'm trying to say here.  I just want you to know I GET YOU.  OK, seriously - call me.

PPPPPS - I mean, I'm trying really hard to be rational here, you know?  LOL!!!  I just don't want to ruin what we have, you know?  I think you're really great and I'm really trying to keep my cool over here.  So, just, you know.  Call me or something and we'll talk.  Let's just TALK.  OK.  OK.  ...OK.

PPPPPPS - No, but seriously - fuck it.  Who am I kidding, over here??  I'm pissed!  You knew what you were doing... don't give me that innocent crap.  You really fucked me over this year!!  I was gonna be living large and you made sure to shove that money train right off the tracks.  I mean you really left me cold and broken on the bathroom floor!  And the worst part is - you know what that's like!  I mean your video for "Confessions of a Broken Heart" of course.  I mean, shit.  We GET each other, girl!  Or at least I thought we did.  I guess I just don't know you anymore.

PPPPPPPS - OK so I'm just going to come right out and say it.  That commercial had NOTHING to do with you.  Like, literally, nothing.  You know what nothing is right?  It's the lack of something.  The absence of things, things being you as the "hidden meaning" of that commercial.  I was hired to do a voice and that was it.  Why would I do something to hurt you?  I was just trying to do my job!  I mean think about it - you've done nothing to me - am I some psycho who just goes around hurting innocent people?  You know I'm not that person!  If you had done something to piss me off I would have called you and been like, "dude you really pissed me off!" and then you would have been like, "what did I do??" and I would have been all, "you borrowed my antique measuring cup and broke the handle off then tried to glue it back on and pass it off when you should have just told me you broke it in the first place.  You know I care more about you then some stupid measuring cup from the 50s!  Come on, girl!  You know that!"  And then we would have gotten together for some egg nog ice cream and pound cake (our fave!), snuggled on the couch and finished watching Season 1 of Damages.  Instead you chose to stab me in the back and I'm really pissed!  Fuck!  I don't know if we can be friends again.  Seriously, I think this might be a deal-breaker, lady.

PPPPPPPPS - SO I NAMED THE BABY LINDSAY.  So what!?  There are a currently about a million people named Lindsay.  And that crap about you being synonymous with the name Lindsay that is just crap!  You're not Cher, dude.  You starred in a few movies and made some shitty records.  Get over yourself!

PPPPPPPPPS - Sorry.  I'm really sorry.  I didn't mean to low-blow you like that.  I love your movies and your music.  Really!  I play your songs all the time.  A lot of your songs!  So, yeah, I named the baby Lindsay and called her a "milk-a-holic".  It's true.  Shit, I know how it sounds, boo.  I know you must have seen that spot and thought what a raging bitch I was. You probably threw a few things.  I know your temper ;)  (Remember the stool through my parent's sliding glass door??? LOL!)  But you have to believe it was purely coincidental.  The producers were looking for a baby name that sounded edgy and the first name that popped in my head was Lindsay.  (Um - you should totally feel honored by that, btw.)  And the "milk-a-holic" thing was just a hilarious joke about babies!  Wait... do you get it?  Maybe that's the problem - you don't get it.  See... cuz babies don't date each other, yano?  So the whole commercial in the first place is just ridiculous.  Yano?  I mean, it starts off with a girl baby TALKING, first of all... and it's and adult voice (MY voice) so right off the bat you're like, "oh man I get this commercial - it's a joke!"  And then the girl baby is like "where were you last night??" which, let's face it, we both get.  Dating an unfaithful guy bites the big one.  Been there, done that, right sister?  I mean, we chose different ways of dealing with it, but still.  (Me - therapy.  You - Samantha. LOL!)  So anyway, the commercial is parodying adult relationships in kids so it's funny to call the "tramp baby" at the end a "milk-a-holic" because she's a baby who... are you getting this at all?  It was a joke that had nothing to do with you.  Plain and simple.  A joke.  Anyway, I guess I'll talk to you in person about this at some point.  Love you like a sister.  SWAK!

PPPPPPPPPPS - No, wait... I'm sorry.  The more I think about this the more it pisses me off.  You sued them, dude!  You sued E*Trade for 100 MILLION DOLLARS!!  Why not make it a billion!  Jesus!  Like, are you even kidding me right now?  They took that spot off the air.  It was the number 3 Super Bowl spot, it probably would have run ALL TIME and you had it taken off the air.  Do you understand what that did to my bank account?  Can you say overdrawn?  Do you know what that's like?  Do you know what it's like to fend for yourself financially from the time you're 19??  Do you have any fucking idea??  It's really hard!  Do you KNOW what it's like to book a job which means financial security for a little while so I don't have to think about money all the goddamn time?  I mean, do you even get the plight of the everyman or are you too busy snorting your money up your fucking nose?  Huh??  Huh!!?  Do you get that at ALL!?!?  Seriously, dude.  Fuck you.

PPPPPPPPPPPS - OK, I went to far that time for realz.  I'm really sorry.  (And what was that "plight of the everyman" crap?  Who do I think I am - your dad!?  :P ) Ug, Linds... it's just... it's just a shitty situation.  You really put me in a bitch of a tight spot.  I guess it's over now and there's not a lot that can be done.  I guess I forgive you in the end.  I feel like there's a lot of shit going on in your life I don't know about.  Anyway, call me some time and we'll talk.  Sorry again about the snorting money up your nose comment.  I really do hope you're doing well.

(But seriously, how 'bout a few bones from the settlement, eh?  Help a sister out?  LOL!)


Tuesday, November 09, 2010

I Love a Surprise

Is there anything better than a surprise party?  Hardly.  The thrill, the sneak, the unveil - it's beautiful.  It's better than the best thing ever.  Even winning the Olympics.  ALL of the Olympics.  It's perfect.  It's not only a party it's an instant party!  A party full of people you love in the blink of an eye.

I pulled off the surprise of the century for my boo on Saturday night.  The planning started only a week before when I realized November snuck up on me like a sneeze-fart: fast and furious.  I looked at my calendar, saw there were only 9 days until the celebration of the man who rocks my LIFE, and knew I had to act fast.  I knew I wanted to do something big and, because I love a challenge (and a surprise, see: title), I settled on a surprise party and set the wheels in motion for a mere 5-days away.  The clock was a-tickin' down.

Planning a surprise is hard enough, but planning it for someone you live with IN the place you live is near impossible.  I had to call in many favors and every single person without exception delivered.  With golden fists of fury!  God, we have great friends.  The guise was set: a meeting with comedy pal and bestie Vince to commence at 7pm on the night of the party.  That plan quickly fell through when our worst fears were realized.  He said no!  (WhyIoughta...)  Vince's lady, Jodi, suggested I take him to dinner instead which was a grand plan B, but one which would need a lot of additional help.  I called in reinforcements in the form of Fire! (Kate Tellers), Water! (Marcy Girt), Air! (Carrie Faverty) and Earth! (Jason Falchook).  They jumped at the challenge and delivered a 9-pound baby boy named Matt McCarthy.  Well, his surprise party anyway.  So, at 7pm the night of the fete, I took Matt to Sel de Mer where we laboriously dined on lobster, fries and Budweiser tall boys while the Fearsome Foursome TCB, all the while my stomach turning over in antici..... (say it!).  And boy was he ever surprised.  Not a clue!  Never have I seen him move as quickly in my life.  It was... beautiful.

Sooplize! (photo: Jason Falchook)
I pulled off a surprise of grand proportions once before when Mini McMurray (my little sister) came to visit for her 21st birthday.  Kelsey now lives in Long Island with her honey Frank, but at the time she still resided in Colorado so I wanted to make her visit one of a kind.  It was her 21st birthday after all!  Since she had nobody to really celebrate with here in NY, I planned a fake surprise party in my apartment with my two friends Marcy and Noni.  She walked in to sad little streamers, a cake with melted frosting (Hap Birthdayyy Kelsss) and a few gag gifts.  She was nonetheless thrilled.  She's a lot of things but a diva she is not.  I told her post-cake we'd go to a nearby bar, Blackbear Lodge, for some $3 margaritas and Big Buck Hunter and that WAS the plan... with a detour on the way.  As we walked down the street toward the bar we passed a limo.  I turn to Kelsey and say, "dare me to get in that limo?"

"Ha ha ha, yeah I dare you," she said.

"Do you REALLY DARE ME?"

"Glennis... wait..."

"OK!"

And with that I ran over and hopped in the limo, rolled down the window and shouted, "Happy birthday, bitch!  This is YOUR limo!" And then I reveled in the look on her face the rest of the night.

I love a surprise.  It's a wonderful change of pace, but beyond that, after planning and executing a real, lights-up, everyone-you-love-in-one-room surprise party, I realized I've loved a surprise party my entire life.  Every single year since... as long as I can remember, I've wished and hoped for one planned in my honor.  To me it came to signify, well, love.  Look at all this work we did for you!  Look at all these people who showed up!  Look at the time and planning done in your honor!  We love you!  I thought if my family was unable to show they loved me in certain ways a surprise party was a wonderful way to make up for it.  But, and not to throw myself a surprise pity-party here, it never happened.  But actually I'd assume that's the case for most people.  (And if it's not, if every single one of you has had a surprise party thrown for you... DON'T TELL ME.)  Most people don't have the surprise of their life and even sadder than that, don't celebrate their birthday at all.

How can you not??  How can you not celebrate the day you were born?!  I'm not getting on my soapbox, I swear, but I just wonder what the reasoning is behind that.  I guess celebrating could just not be your thing.  I hope it's not that you don't think you're worth a celebration!  (WhyIoughta...)  For me, my birthday was the one day a year I got to be the center of attention.  I know that sounds crazy me being an actress and all, (an actress with self-esteem issues... alert the presses!), but I felt it was the one day I could ask people to come and deal with my antics without a tinge of guilt or self-doubt on my part.  It was also the one day I could ask them to make t-shirts/do karaoke/don wigs/spend $90 on dinner and basically act a fool.  And so, upon moving to NY, I decided I was going to do my birthday up big times.

The T-Shirt Party of 2006
I provided t-shirts, markers and a few art supplies (hehe, supplies!) and people did the rest.

Truth




A Dangerous Question



The Creator of the "Glesbian" title, Ms. Kate Tellers
Be Fre!



PLEASE NOTE: I did not ask, nor require the use of my name in the making of said shirts.  (But I didn't discourage it either.)

The Wig/Karaoke Party of 2007
I asked people to don wigs and sing songs and they delivered.  Boy did they deliver.

Name Fail



First time in the big city.



Quiet, please.  There's a lady on stage.



You-ah, you-ah, you-ah oughta know.



Willie showed up with his puff jacket stuffed with kind bud.



Jezus kreist.  Why are these buttons so small!?



I invited him because I had a huge crush and when he showed up I peed a little.  Now we're getting married!




The Dirtbag Potluck/Karaoke/Wig Party of 2008
I asked, once again, for the donning of wigs with the addition of a dirty, nasty, delicious dirtbag potluck dish.

Pre-party wig placements.
Serious Musical Soul Sisters

The "Dirtbag Potluck" portion of the evening.

Now they havin a baby, y'all!  A wig baby!

Brandon took his wig a little too seriously.

Cheespuff Monroe

Yunz want some Cheetahs?

Eazy Squeezy Cheese Pants
Sammy's Roumanian Fete of 2009

This...
And this.  Nuff said.
And the parties have continued to rock out Sammy's Roumanian-style every since and will continue to do so every year until I die.

I love a surprise, but my need for a surprise party to be thrown in my honor has faded and, I think, been sated.  No longer is it the only way I know to feel loved, though throwing the fete for Matt was indeed love-fueled and love-themed.  All these parties I threw for myself were just as full of love and people who have now become my NY family.  So no surprises for Glennis, though if you're set on throwing one wait until my death day.  What a way to go!

Love,

Glennis

Friday, November 05, 2010

Triple F!

If you were to ask me what this world needs more of, first I'd give you the Clair Stare for not already knowing the answer, then I'd tell you in two words: Triple Fs.  Aka Fierce Fabulous Fems.  Amirite, people??  I'm getting a little F-E-D Fed Up with hearing women say they're "crazy", "insane" or "broken" and don't deserve what they make abundantly clear they desire.  Everyone deserves happiness but you, right?  Wrong.  Every, and I do mean every, woman out there can be a goddamn rock star, it just takes a few minor tweaks (and maybe some therapy - you knew it was coming), some pointers from me, and a good old college try.  Here are a few tips I picked up on my road to becoming a Triple F.

EXCUSES - LEARNING TO RECOGNIZE AND NIP

"I'll have confidence when my stomach is flat/ass is smaller/thighs don't jiggle."

"A husband and kids with THIS NOSE??"

"Papa can you hear me?  No, you can't.  I'm an unlovable monster!"

"I'm just a socially awkward weirdo.  Drinks on me!"

Sound familiar?  They do to me because they're all things I've said and have let hold me back.  Pretty sad if I do say so myself.  (And I do.) It's not the worst thing in the world by any means, but it's a downright shame.  I know there are ladies out there thinking similar thoughts on a daily basis.  So here's the thing, we all have residual shit from childhood.  I used to be *squawked* at every time I'd walk into my middle school art class.  They called me "Beak".  As in "BIRD BEAK".  No joke, guys, it stuck with me and I didn't even realize I was seeing my nose through their eyes.  I don't have a big nose, but if I did wtf cares?  Good old Bette Davis put it best when she said, "If you hate your parents for willing you buck teeth, have them fixed or become a comic - only keep quiet about it."  I think we'd all agree that Ms. Davis was a Triple F, yes?  So stop hating and start heeding!!  Stop making excuses, start making out with yourself!  If you hate your nose either fix it or MOVE ON WITH YOUR LIFE.

You know who doesn't use excuses?  Rosemarie Siggins aka "The Woman with Half a Body" (thank you Discovery Health).  She had her legs amputated at a young age because of a genetic condition and now gets around using her arms and a sweet skateboard.  I mean, literally, best excuse ever to not move forward with your life, right?  You literally have no legs to do the moving forward.  But did she sit at home moping, beating herself up and name-calling?  No!  She got out there!  She met a man, had kids, BOOM!  Are you really going to tell me you're not good enough while looking at a serious Triple F like Rosemarie Siggins?  Give me a serious break.

Serious Rockstar and Lover of America



SELF RESPECT

Adding some self respect to the mix has some pretty great side effects.  First, something we all want more of - confidence.  Self respect and confidence go hand in hand.  I mean, sure, you can fake confidence till the cows come home but at some point your true self image will show and it's usually on your 15th vodka/soda at 3 in the morning while you cry to your friend on a street corner.  (Been there, done that, lost the t-shirt.)  Second, respect from men!  How about that??  I can't think of anything sadder than a seemingly strong, confident woman seeking a man-child's approval.  Add some self respect to the mix and, well you might not be able to open his eyes, but you sure as hell can show him you won't stand for that kind of behavior!  (Do I really need to give examples?  Pretty sure we've all been victims at some point in our lives.)  The more women who stand up for themselves and stop jumping through hoops for men the better chance we have of them realizing they can't get away with that shit and... *Boom!*  Problem solved.  Unfortunately, there are a bunch of dickwads out there (just watch an episode of 16 and Pregnant for the earliest signs of dickwaddery) with no one to hold them accountable and it just makes me sick.  (Seriously though I think I need to stop watching 16 and Preggers. Rage.)

OWN IT

Grade Triple F Meat
Does anyone define "owning it" better than Lady Gaga?  Doubt it.  I mean you're telling me it doesn't take balls to wear a dress made out of meat?  Not only wear it, but ROCKET?  You're really going to tell me that right now?  She can wear a dress of meat, but you can't wear jeans because your butt looks big?  Gimme a B-R-E-A-K, Break!

Owning It, Bitch
I love Snooki.  She knows who she is and makes no apologies for it.  She doesn't fit into the box society has deemed "acceptable" for a lady, so she does her thing with a middle finger to the world.  At the same time she stays true to herself and the people she loves.  Sure, she can be a hot mess at times - who can't?  I've had my share of hot messiness, but she doesn't let men dick her around, she doesn't accept double standards and she rocks her attitude just as fiercely on the red carpet as in her grimy slippers.  (Seriously though wash those things, Snooks.)

SISTERHOOD OF THE TRIPLE Fs

I think all my ladies will agree that it's hard out there for a girl, yes?  So why make it harder?  We're already fighting for respect from a lot of men so why are we fighting for respect from each other?  Shouldn't the mere fact that we're all the same gender be enough to unite us?

Oh, and side note: can everyone, but especially ladies, please stop calling them "slutty" Halloween costumes?  That would be awesome.  Exposing skin does not a slut make.  Thanks.

True Triple Fs are proud of each other.  They take pride in the work of their brethren and respect them enough not to turn everything into a fight-to-the-death competition.  Healthy competition, sure!  Look at what the ladies around you are doing and let that inspire you to think, hey, if they can why not me? Healthy competition moves you forward, unhealthy keeps you stuck.  Support each other and things will undoubtedly be easier on all of us!

SEXY TIMES

After a show a few years back, two audience members joined me for drinks at a bar around the corner.  Two lovely ladies from New Jersey, both middle-aged and non-creative types, they were interested in the career path I'd chosen and were asking a lot of questions.  We got to talking, drinking and talking some more and the subject of sex came up.  I, of course, started talking about vibrators and how the one I bought wasn't doing the "trick" and was met with blank stares.  Certain I'd crossed the line and - reminding myself these were not only strangers but fans who had probably just tossed their "Glesbo" hats straight out the metaphorical window - I quickly changed the subject.  There's a time and a place, McMurray!  To my surprise their floodgates opened and all the pent-up sexual frustrations came pouring out.  "I've never masturbated" one woman said.  (I tried to contain my shock reminding myself once again that these were strangers.)  "I've never had an orgasm" the other said.  "And," she added "I've been married for 10 years."
Whu-whu-whu-whuuuuutt??  Hold the goddamn line for a second.  What the balls!?  I tried to diplomatically respond, but ended up giving them an earful about how gettin' down with yourself is awesome and hot and NECESSARY.  They said they knew and made excuses and I'm pretty sure I scared them, but I'm glad I had my say.  Seriously, ladies, that thing between your legs is - news flash - not just for dudes!  (Or ladies if that's your thang.)  What I'm trying to say is a Triple F loves herself inside and out.  She rubs the bean, flicks the pea, massages the chicklet all in the name of happiness, confidence and fabulousness.  So take that Christine O'Donnell you sad little robot.

Honestly, from hearing some women talk it sometimes seems like a lost cause, but I know it's not.  I know one of you is reading this going, "I want to be a Triple F!" and I know you'll figure out how.  Because you do have to figure it out for yourself which is the unfortunate/fortunate part of all this.  Looking outside yourself (a man, booze, woman-hating) to feel more confident is just temporary and so not fabulous or fierce.  How about we all just start being proud that we're the third F... Females.  (Or, my preferred term, "Ladies".  I had to settle for Female to sate my love of alliteration.)

So ladies, let's slap on a coat of red lipstick, throw on some self respect and we'll be that much closer to having a world bursting with Triple Fs.  Imagine?

Love,

Glennis

Monday, November 01, 2010

Ah Skeet Skeet

100 pct crazy
Double G



Tonight!  Live on stage for the very first time it's Double G tag team Gilda and Glenny in...

YAPPY HOUR!

Yappy Hour is hosted by Mina with her owner Giulia Rozzi (Stripped Stories, Mtv, VH1) and Dummy with her owner Tony Camin (Comedy Central, Marijuanaloges) and will showcase some of New York's funniest dog-owners and their dogs telling jokes, stories, and doing fancy tricks!

Hosted by Mina (with Giulia Rozzi) & Dummy (with Tony Camin)

With performances by:
Scoops (with Dan Curry)
Lucy ( with Brandy Barber)
Mocha (with Ophira Eisenberg)
Atticus (with Eliot Glazer)
Fenchurch J. Nuisance (with Sean Crespo & Carol Hartsell)
Astaire Allocco (with Sara Jo Allocco)
Paquita Borgita Borgata Chorizo Jimenez (with Kambri Crews)
Gilda Raddog McArfy (with Glennis McMurray)
...And just added Ripley (with Jenn Wehrung!)

Tonight, 8pm, $5.00
UCB THEATRE
307 West 26th Street @ 8th Avenue
Reserve your $5 ticket at http://newyork.ucbtheatre.com/ or call 212.366.9176

See you there, suckas!

Love,

Double Gs

Friday, October 29, 2010

Website Revamp

Because I've been stuck at home for the past day and a half (hack/cough/sigh), I decided to update my website.  This might very well be the 200th time I've done so since learning to do so, but this one is my favorite of all.  The backgrounds represent my two homes: Colorado and New York, and the nameplate is the one I wear every day given to me by my boo.

Enjoy and let me know if you find any typos, broken links, etc.

Love,

Glennis

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Ask G: Pu-push It Real Good aka The Perfect Birthing Mix

Today on "Ask G" 'Bill's Mom' writes:

"Hi there-
I am going to be having a baby in the next couple weeks or so and I was told that I should look into music to listen to during the labor process...do you have any advice on good music mixes for bringing a baby into the world? I hear you used to be a dj.
-"Bill's" soon to be mom"

Dear Mommy Bill,

Congratulations!!
I'm a baby.

I can't speak from experience here, but I understand having a baby is a pret-ty big deal.  In fact I hear it can be life changing, but don't quote me on that.  An expert on babies I'm not... an expert on music I totally am not either.  But I do love me some hot jams and I am more than up to the task of helping you put together your baby mix!  In fact, I'm honored!

I thought hard about this and I've decided that, because everyone's musical tastes differ, I'd give you some guidelines to follow when picking your mix instead of choosing songs for you.  Though I'm sure along the way I'll throw in one or two suggestions which you by no means have to use.

In my opinion you should consider the following when choosing your "burthing jamz":

1.  Your Annoyance Level
Preeeeetty sure the level of  annoyance rises when pushing a medicine ball-sized person out your hoo-ha (childbirth is beautiful is it not?), so you want to avoid songs with catchy, but repetitive hooks which might drive you to insanity.  Eiffel 65's Blue (Da Bu De) comes to mind as a song that, when played at a club might cause shawty fire burning on a dance floor, but when played in a... baby birthing room (huh) might cause murder.  You might argue that murdering someone while giving birth is the true circle of life, but I'd like to point out that your arguments are stupid.

Moving on.

2. Capturing the Moment
One day your little Bill is going to look at you in his Yankee uniform just before he takes the mound for the very first time and he'll say, "Mom.  Dad.  There's something I've always wanted to ask you.  What was the first song I ever heard?  I mean... what played as I exited your lady garage?"  Do you really want to turn to him and say, "Pop That Pussy by 2 Live Crew"?  Can you even imagine the effect that would have on poor Bill?  I mean, sure, the song is relevent to the birthing process and you and your husband will have at that point raised a fine young man, but his mighty world might be crushed by that news causing him to blow the game ruining the Yankee's chances of ever becoming the winningest team in baseball.  Nice going, mom.  You really screwed the pooch on that one.

3. I Get So Emotional
Childbirth is beautiful blahblahblah, but let's face facts... you've got a job to do.  Getting the boy out is job number one and you don't want some sappy song about a unicorn drinking out of a kitten's paw mucking that up for you.  I do a lot of crying on the toilet and let me tell you crying and pushing do not go together like ramalama kadingidy dingy dong.

4. Sessytime
Sex is what got you into this so you might be inclined to listen to a sexy song to mark the occasion.  While almost every part of me thinks this is a good idea, there is this nagging voice in the back of my head telling me it crosses the line.  Prince has no place in a birthing mix.  I concede.

5. Classic
I know a lot of people are of the mindset that classical music cures all, but I'm of the mindset that it's a giant snoozefest.  I mean, sure, there is a time and a place, but do you really want your baby coming out all snootypants thinking he's better than other people because he was born to Sonata No. 12 In E Minor The Wind in my Shorts?  I don't think so.

Wait.  Hold the phone.  Something just occurred to me.  My advice, and I truly think this might be the best advice I've ever doled, is to listen to...

wait for it...

waaaaait for it...

...


wait...




for it...







SHOW TUNES!

Mind = blown
Yes, my dear mommy to be, I believe you should listen to your favorite musicals, soundtracks and, hell let's throw comedy albums in there as well.  (I mean can you even imagine how rich this revelation is going to make me?  Brilliant.)  What's better than a sing-a-long to keep your mind off the pain?  That's what makes going to the dentist so awful - no sing-a-longs! (Sorry to my DDS friend Brittany reading this - I'm sure you've figured out a way to work around that problem.)

I'm not having a baby yet (but as I just tweeted I have some nasty indigestion, so... fingers crossed!), but here's what I'd do if I was about to push a papoose out my teepee:

On your way to the hospital: Ideally your husband would drive you, but if you live in NY you'll probably take a cab.  Assuming the baby's not on its way, I'd like you to a capella "Morning Glow".  Your husband need not join in, but really how can he resist?  The song perfectly captures the uplifting spirit of the situation and will really set you in the mood for baby time.  (Why a capella?  Because NYC, home of the Great White Way, still doesn't have an all-musical radio station.  And they call this America.)

Chillin' in your room:  A mix of songs that are just plain fun to sing along with.  Suddenly Seymour, Cabaret, Hard Knock Life, Part of Your World.  Get the staff involved and soon you'll be the most popular patient on the floor!  No, really.  Trust me on this.  Musical theatre makes you very popular.


Uncomfortable, but not in pain:  When the contractions kick in, but it's not time to push, switch it up to The Rocky Horror Picture Show.  Just be careful when doing the Time Warp.

When the contractions intensify: Listen to your favorite comedy album.  Steven Martin?  Maria Bamford?  George Carlin?  What's your poison?  Or, wait - check with your doctor to make sure it's OK to laugh at this stage.  You don't want to end up hurting the baby in the name of a good time.  Plenty of opportunities to do that once he's born.  (Might I also recommend my boo's comedy album?  Why, I might.  I might just do that.)

In your final contractions: Your husband serenades you with "Maria" from West Side Story, but subs in your name.  ex: "Aaaaaamanda.  I just met a girl named Amanda!  And suddenly I see..." the baby!  Holy shit it's coming!

As Bill meets the world: You and your husband perform an exhausted, but impassioned version of "Without Love" from Hairspray.

Happiest. Baby. Ever.
Word.


Well, Bill's Mom To Be, I hope this helped.  No need to thank me, really.  Just name your first girl Glennis and we'll call it even.

xG


Would you like to "Ask G"?  Of course you would!  Send an email to answermecommag@gmail.com.

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

G's Broadway Adventure

*SPOILER ALERT!* - This post may contain spoilers for Pee-wee on Broadway!  If you want to be surprised by the show then I suggest you avoid reading this post (though I do try to keep them spoilers to a min). xG

I love Pee-Wee Herman.  LOVE.
If you love me so much then why don't you marry me?
I WILL MARRY YOU.  I will call off my engagement to Matt and marry not only Pee-wee, but the entire show!  Then I'll let the show carry me over the threshold to our new house (the Playhouse of course) and make sweet love to me!  I will have little show babies with the show and, when we die, we'll be set aflame in a boat at sea.  THAT'S how much I love it!

...was the exact sentiment of the man seated at the end of our row at The Pee-Wee Herman Show on Broadway last night who also felt the need to speak-a-long with the entire production.

Where's the most annoying audience member, Globey?  Right... there!
Now lissen, I really do love me some Pee-wee.  See: farewell email to law firm where I was employeed for 8 (loooooong) years:

-----Original Message-----
From: Mcmurray, Glennis F.
Sent: Thursday, April 17, 2008 3:27 PM
To: NYC ALL
Subject: But What Am I?
Today is my last day in the firm.
Just like Pee-Wee Herman in his Big Adventure...
I'm off to find my bike.
PEACE
-Glennis

But, you guys, I wouldn't marry him.  I mean, he's kind of a man-child and I know from experience that's just a recipe for disaster.  (But speaking of recipes... we do have similar diets which is the most important foundation for any happy marriage!  Fried butter, anyone?)  So, yes, I love Pee-wee (LURV, in fact), but doesn't everyone?  And can't pretty much everyone quote him?  So it's not that impressive that you know Jambi's going to utter, "Meka leka high meka hiney ho" a few times or that Conky will give us the word of the day up top.  (The word was "fun"!  AAHHHH!)  And when you tout your impressive (yawn) knowledge of the show throughout said show (that I paid a lot of money to see) you're kind of asking me hate you for having a good time and that makes me feel like a beast so just shut up already!

Ahem.

Let me back this train up.

Paul Reubens is my hero.  I know I deem a lot of people my hero which means I've got a lot of heroes.  Nothing wrong with that, Chach.  I admire Paul's career and especially his chameleon-like transformations.  Need I remind you of his stint as Prince Gerhart on 30 Rock?



Best death scene ever?



Excuse me... what?  Paul Reubens on The Gong Show?



OK so that last one was just for fun, but he really is the greatest.  And ecu me?  This?  Yes please!

So what I'm trying to say is I saw this show soley based on my love of Pee-wee not really knowing what the show would be.  It ended up being everything I'd hoped for and more.  It was just like watching an episode of Playhouse (of the CBS variety) from the 80's only live and flashier and LIVE!  Seeing Paul as Pee-wee in person, in front of my face, on stage was to say the least thrilling.  The audience rose to their feet when he walked on stage and I had a moment of "this is actually happening" which I didn't expect.  I wasn't brought to tears (ahem man at the end of my row), but I was definitely moved.  I just... I just love him so much, you guys.  Paul Reubens, that is.  Where as some performers shy away from a role or character that made them (*cough*JonHeder*cough*), Paul Reubens basked in it, went with it and has taken it to the ends of the earth and back.  There's not a bit of me that doesn't admire and aspire to that.  Not only should you be proud of creating something people respond to and want to see more of, you should respect the fact that not many people will ever do something like that.  I understand wanting to diversify yourself, but why stop the train from rollin??  Are you too good for your character?!  (But seriously, no Napoleon Dynamite 2? What the fudge?)

OK, stepping off my judgebox now.

Lynne Marie Stewart, who now plays Charlie's mom on "Sunny", reprised her role as Miss Yvonne and was just delightful.  I honestly wish the show had just been Paul and Lynne on stage, maybe improvising, maybe just staring back at me.  Lurv.  Lynne had two snafoos (her petticoat slipped off and Chairry's wig got stuck on... Chairry) which she handled with all the poise and grace you'd expect a Groundlings alum would possess.  Also reprising his role as Jambi (Mecka Lecka... YES WE GET IT DUDE.  YOU KNOW THE SHOW.) was John Paragon.  Yay John!  He was always my favorite.  OK I may have had a crush.  My therapist would have a field day with that - "a disembodied head who grants wishes and asks nothing in return?  Iiiiinteresting..."  I choose to focus on the fact that he's trapped in a box allowing me to know his wherabouts at all times.  You're telling me you'd turn that down, ladies?



Aaaaanybroadwaybaby... I mean, really the entire cast was great, Chairry (voiced by the adorable Lexi Fridell), Phil LaMarr made the perfect Cowboy Curtis (and his bio alerted me to the fact that there was a Patty Hearst musical called "Patty Patty Bang Bang: The Patty Hearst Musical" - hello!) and for only having one line as himself, Drew Powell was great as the dancing bear (he also voiced Mr. Window and the Flowers).  The swoonie Josh Meyers killed me as the sessy Firefighter and I'm pretty sure I'm going to turn my laptop into Screeny after seeing "her" live, but where, I ask you, was Reba the Mail Lady!?  Maybe she needed a break after appearing in more episodes of a show than anyone, ever.  Boom!

Three things: according to Wikipedia Cyndi Lauper recorded the theme song for Pee-wee's show under the name "Ellen Shaw".



Second, they showed a Penny cartoon last night and by they I mean The King of Cartoons (played by Lance Roberts - fun fact: he played the Genie in 7,000 performances of Aladin at the Hypereon Theatre - I don't think I've ever done 7,000 of anything.  What am I doing with my life!?!  Ahem.) which made me realize I'd totally forgotten about Penny!



I can't find a lot about Anna Seidman, the voice of Penny, but apparently she is on Facebook and we have no mutual friends.

Third, Natasha Lyonne was a member of the Playhouse Gang in season one.  I couldn't find a clip of that, but I found a clip.. of her... watching herself on the show?  Weird.


I love the girl so, though it's weird, I highly approve.

Last I'll just say that my number one, big top moment of the show was Pee-wee's balloon work.  You have to see it to understand.  HOWLING.

Now, back to the BIGGESTPEEWEEFANSEVEROMGOMG.  As I said, they talked through the whole thing, but it wasn't just the talking.  I knew they were enjoying themselves which was why I kept my trap shut (something I often have trouble doing), but the fact that they looked around after each comment to see, I can only assume, who was impressed with their Pee-wee knowledge was really too much.  Did you really pay all that money to see a show so people could know how much you love the show you paid a bunch of money to see?  Doesn't that kind of go with the teritory of paying a lot of money to see a show opening night?  Wait, at one point Pee-wee makes microwave popcorn and the guy goes "Popcorn!  Hahaha!  Popcorn!  Hahahahahahaaaa I told you'd there be popcorn!" at top volume.  Oh brudda.  So they were a pain, but not a total distraction, and as the show ended we all started filing out of the theatre when I heard, "You keep your goddamn hands off me!!"  Surprise, surprise it was mouthy Jones and his partner starting a fight with a 60-year-old man.  Come ON.  They continued to fight as they walked out of the theatre and try as I might to catch up with them I missed it all.  I did catch someone coming down the stairs say, "he had his hands around his throat!"  REALLY??  I guess I just assume a Broadway production brings out the best in people and then I look around to find jeans, fanny packs and wife beaters and reality sets in.  I once exited a show to hear a woman scream, "Oh no you did NOT just stick your hand in my purse!  She's tryin' to steal my shit!"  Now DAS classy.

So, in closing I say: go see Pee-wee if you're a fan of the show, go see Pee-wee if you're not a fan, just go see Pee-wee.  It's one of those experiences you really should have before you die.  Wait, maybe the guy causing a ruckus in my row was from the Buried Life... they seem pretty douchie.  (Really, marrying a stranger in Vegas is something you have to do before you die?  Pu-leeeeez.)

Oh and if you do end up going - behave yourself!

Love,

Glennis

The Pee-wee Herman Show on Broadway plays through Jan 2.  More info here!

A Great Show! (I know you are, but what am I?)

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Bathroom Humor

Why, yes! I do have a hilarious story about mistaken identities! I'm glad you asked.

The scene: Matt and I, at dinner, a restaurant in Williamsburg.

I excuse myself to go to the bathroom. It's empty (the bathroom, not my bladder) and I choose the stall to the left. As soon as I sit down another woman walks in and, because I have terrible hayfever allergies, I start sniffing. Sure the other occupant heard me sniff, I think, "wouldn't it be funny if she thought I was doing coke in here..." (snorting coke in a bathroom, the height of hilarity). With that in mind I sniff loudly and, from outside my stall I hear...

"Danieeeeelle???"

Discuss.

Love,

Glennis

Monday, October 25, 2010

Nailed It

It's been a while since I've had the old toes and fingies done.  I noticed last night, as I was dressing for the Barber/Woolfolk wedding-party-ball, the desperate shape my toes were in.  It's really a disgrace.  Some of you are of the school of thought that this should immediately be remedied by a trip to my local salon and I whole-heartedly agree, but only about it being remedied.  I have a real problem getting my nails done in a salon and there are a few reasons why.  First there's the obvious deterrent - the great Paula Abdul nail fiasco of 2004 wherein she had to have a nail surgically removed due to fungus caused by unsanitary manicure utensils.  Gross.  I mean, it's not the end of the world, but it's pretty disgusting.
Straight up now tell me... did you sanitize that file?
Second, I am a mover.  I have a hard time sitting still for long periods of time (I'm doing squats as I write this), plus I'm super impatient.  Allowing a hair dresser to blow dry my hair is a big deal.  (Also kind of a control freak?  Just a leetle?)  Because of my impatience most of my pedicures end with me shoving my hairy toes (seriously, hobbit feet) into my shoes before they're dry thus negating the pedicure and wasting my hard-earned money.  Stoopit.  I know I should revel in the "me" time, but it just feels like time that could be spent eating cheese. (Now a cheese mani/pedi I can get on board with!)

But the greatest deterent of all might surprise you.  For you see... I, Glennis McMurray, am a licensed nail technician.  Or, I was.  I don't make a habit of telling people any more as the responses started to gross me out.  Listen, there ain't nothin' wrong with doing nails, peeps, and I should have told that to a few of your faces.  Ain't no shame in working hard for your money right, Donna Summer!?  (Preeeeetty sure she wrote that song about nail techs, but don't quote me on that.)  But I forgive, I just won't ever give you a free manicure and trust me - they good.

Let me start by saying that it all came to be because my mother was a hair dresser.  She cut hair (and painted, she's kind of an amazing artist) and I at one point had similar aspirations.  Art, though I could copy the shit out of an already drawn image, was not my thing, but I always thought hairdressing would be a great way to earn money when I moved to NY.  I'd waited tables in Durango and despised it (hated the waiting, loved the free food) so I planned on avoiding that line of work at all costs.  Since the only reputable hair school was too far for me to commute to and still live in Durango I decided to take classes at a nail school in Farmington, NM or, as we grew up calling it, FarmPit.

Farmington might just be the arm pit of New Mexico.  There's not a lot going on there and the whole town is stuck in an 80's bubble.
The carpet matches the drapes.
There was also an air of defeat that wafted through the town.  I mean, I'm sure there are ambitious, driven people that come out of Farmington and I went to school with some of the sweetest people I've ever met, but the town itself is sort of depreso.  Though I will say they have a pretty sweet mall (hence all the mall bangs) and, since Durango's mall was more of a hall, we frequented the Farmington Mall for all our back-to-school and Red Lobster needs.  (Mmmm cheesy buns.)  So, apart from the mall I can't say I was thrilled to be attending nail school in Farmington.  Not thrilled in the least as I watched my friends go off to college.  In fact you could say I was depressed as balls.

Now, I know what you're saying, "Nail School??  Can't you just, like, DO THEM?"  And my response would be no, dummy.  You can't.  You'd be surprised what you have to know!  Anatomy, sanitation and fungus-prevention, how to safely work on people with diabetes (so they don't, you know, lose a TOE) and of course the ushe - manis, pedies, tips and the like.  It's not rocket science, but it's no day at the beach either.  I'll admit that as an 18-year-old with dreams of living in the Big Apple, I was a bit over the school before I'd even started.  I'll also admit I thought I was too good.  I did.  I wanted to be on Broadway, not filing toenails, but followed through because it was a means to an end.  But the longer I was in school the more I realized I really liked doing nails.  The perfectionist side of me came out and a great day was a perfect set of tips.  And then with the discovery of nail art my life kind of changed.  I was obsessed.  It became a challenge to see what I could paint on the smallest of nails.  My classmates would bring in pictures of cartoon characters, landscapes, even famous people (pretty exclusively Elvis) and I, using the tiniest of brushes, would set to work creating my masterpiece.  If only I'd had the foresight to take pictures!  This was when I started to let go, make friends and every day my disdain for my situation lessened.  I also began to enjoy the drive to and from school.  45-minutes in a car by myself allowed me the luxury of a musical sing-a-long which any theatre nerd will tell you is a damn fine time.  And, if we're being completely honest here, and we are, my soundtrack of choice was usually RENT.  I guess you could say it really lit my candle.  (Gross)

But I digress...

The cast of characters at the school was varied.  Two Navajo girls who, by my standards, lived a pretty posh lifestyle off their government issued checks.  I was slightly jealous (of the money, not the reasons they received it), but also felt like it made them a tad passive.  They didn't even plan on doing nails, but the gov't money paid for education so I guess they thought why not?  They had plans to open a tanning salon so if they ended up wanting to do nails the two could go hand in tanned.  (Hey oooo)  I'm pretty sure they're still in Farmington driving around in their awesome vanilla-scented pink truck.  That truck was so cool.  Way better than my rusted Toyota Corolla hatchback that smelled of patchouli oil.  The director of the nail school, a sweet, round, jubilant woman, was the one most excited by my nail art.  I must have painted an Elvis a week for her.  But the thing I remember most about her was her fake toenails.  I'm can't be 100% sure it was because of her diabetes, but that's what I remember.  Fake toenails!  Now, because I'm slightly obsessed with seeing deformed feet (my Summers are spent staring at the ground), I've seen fake toenails quite a few times.  At the time, though, I thought it was nuts.  Now listen, this wasn't a "classy" group per se and I count myself among the group.  One woman pretty exclusively talked about how she was sure we could smell her period.  (sorry)  But the one thing I will say is that they were the most genuine, sweet group of ladies I've met and because they were all quite a few years older than me I learned something from each of them.

Following through on my plan to do nails when I moved to NY, I interviewed at a few high end salons on the upper west side which went well - one of them offered me a job doing nails on the Leeza Gibbons show... so... that's a thing.  (Still kind of regret turning that one down.)  But as I pounded the pavement I was struck by the sheer number of nail salons this city housed.  I slowly realized my plan had a fault and I'd need to make money some other way.  Well, farts.  (I ended up taking secretarial work which made me way more money even if it did kill my soul a little bit.)  I will say had I not done nails I never would have met the NY family I eventually nannied for.  I did the grandmother's nails when I lived in Boulder (they were on vacation) before moving to NY, and they offered me a job.  Wait, it just ocurred to me how stupid that was on their part.  Yeesh.  AnywaycoTexas... that family ended up being a nightmare (more on them another time), but through them I met another family who ended up becoming my surrogate family and to whom I owe much of my sanity my first few years here.  I'm not sure I would have made it without them and it can all be traced back to nails.

And with that, dear readers, I'm going to pamper myself with a mani and pedi, though I'll probably still stuff my troll feet into my shoes before the paint has dried.

Love,

Glennis

PS - Check out my Radar shout out and don't forget to "Ask G"!

Photo: Anya Garrett

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Ask G: Put Your Money Where Your Mouth Is

Today on "Ask G", Lauren writes:

"i know you are the queen of voice overs and i'm looking to take a piece of the pie. aka make a little cisnash. i'm gonna put together a reel with joel spence (ucb guy here), i think. he charges like $300 bones. i wanted any advice on all of it as it's a realm i've not a whole lot of knowledge."

Dear Lauren,

I'm so glad you asked!  I get that question a lot and would love to share the knowledge I've gained in the VO biz over the past few years.  Voice overs are not only fun, they can be a very lucrative career.

I hate to say it, but I sort of fell into voice overs.  After taking Brooke & Mary's excellent On-Camera Commercial Intensive (www.brookeandmary.com) - which I highly recommend for any NYers looking to break into commercials - I was signed with an agency.  Because the agency signed across the board (for on-camera & voice over), they started sending me out on voice overs right away and much to my own dismay.  I say that because I had NO idea what I was doing.  On-camera I got.  Standing behind a mic using my voice and only my voice was a whole new beast that I was none to eager to take on.  About 6-months into the process (being sent out on approx. 4-5 VO auditions a week) I booked my first spot for Jeep radio.  I had one line as "happy neighbor" and it took me all of 5-minutes to record.  I walked out feeling uncertain, sure I'd screwed up the spot and certain my agents would be calling me at any moment to let me go.  Thankfully, though I asked my agents to stop sending me out on voice overs (imagine?), my agent Katherine told me I was good, said I had a "soothing" and "girl next door" voice and continued to send me out.  Since then I've booked National Network spots for Playtex, Dawn, Prego, E*Trade and now I make a living almost exclusively through voice overs.  Thank god I kept going!

The first piece of advice I'll impart to you is taking a little time before signing up for a class (which I recommend, but more on that later) so you can listen to commercials on TV and the radio and recording and listen to your own voice.  Instead of fast forwarding through commercials start listening to the voices.  Where does your voice fit in?  You might be surprised to find out where you fit which is why it's equally as important to record your voice and listen back.  Are you the reassuring mom?  The ditzy teen?  The sexpot?  It might sound obvious, but because you're being represented solely by your voice it's important to be as clear and specific as possible.  What we hear when we speak sounds very different when played back for our own ears, which we all discovered with our first answering machine, right?

After you've listened to a ton of voice overs and have an idea where you fit, find some copy (I know Lauren knows, but copy is just show biz lingo for the words on the page) either online or by transposing the commercials that speak to you (no pun intended).  Then record yourself on Garage Band or the like to see how you sound.  (You can also find scripts here: http://www.edgestudio.com/scripts.htm)

Some things to keep in mind:

1. Who are you talking to?
Your voice changes when speaking to a room full of people as opposed to a single person, your mom vs. your best friend, a child vs. a teenager.  Imagine the audience for the spot you're working on, pick someone in your life who fits in that audience and talk to them.

2. Smile!
Your enthusiasm can come across on camera in many ways, but in voice overs you have to actually, physically smile in order to get that across.  So if the spot calls for it, smile!

3. Impressions
Do you do voices or impressions of people?  That's important especially when working on a character or cartoon reel.  Some of my accents come from obscure impressions like my British accent from Jane Carr on Dear John.  Every single voice and accent you do could be usable so work on expanding the character so you can play different emotions and you could end up making a lot of money by booking a series or movie!

4. Improvise
If you're adept at the art of improv then use it, use it, use it.  Don't go off-script willy nilly, but if you can add a cute little button at the end or improvise a funny line you're probably going to book the spot.  Same goes for on-camera, but with voice over it has less to do with how you look so it can really be put to good use.

5. Practice, practice, practice
Like most things the more you do it the better you'll get.  Don't give up because it feels weird - it is weird.  It's not normal to stand in a booth by yourself and act like a sex-crazed grape or a disgruntled sandwich.  It's just not normal!  So be patient with yourself and try to have fun with it.  Pretty soon you'll be an old pro and the residual checks will start rolling in.

Of course, it's not necessary to do all this work before taking a class.  You could find out that you're a natural, but sometimes finding your voice takes a while so why not speed up the process?  And finally, classes.  If you're in NY, Sound Lounge's Carrie Faverty and Tony Mennuto offer a fabulous boot camp and, lucky you, their next class starts November 13th!  (Contact carrie@soundlounge.com for info.)  When putting together your reel, and professionals correct me if I'm wrong, I believe you should have at least one promo ("Coming up next on HDTV!"), one or two "characters" (which don't have to be cartoony, but just the people talking about the product) and a few announcer VOs.  It should be no longer than 2-minutes and make sure the sound quality is great.  Spending a little money on your reel and putting it up on http://voice123.com/ or http://www.voicebank.net/ is a great option.  You could be cast in a spot based on your reel without even auditioning.  It's rare, but it happens!

I hope this helps, Lauren, and if anyone reading this has information on voice over classes in other parts of the country please feel free to leave them in the comments.

You can check out some of my voice over work and my reel on my website.

xG

Saturday, October 23, 2010

Dirty Little Lies

I'm about to admit something to you guys that I'm not proud of.  I used to be a liar.  A big, fat liar with my stupid pants on fire.  It's not something I brag about or anything and I'm not proud of it so get off my lady junk.  Gaaahd!  Why are you so judgmental, internet!?  Anywayyouwantit... I did it and that's that.  Lying is just one of those things that starts out small with a few "tell them I'm not home" fibs and snowballs until you're sneaking out of your bedroom window in your father's house at midnight to smoke pot in "the hood" (of Durango, CO so really more like "the condo") with your best friend.  Lying begets more lying and the knot in the pit of your stomach eventually becomes so intense that you, hopefully, decide to stop lying when the time comes to grow up and make important life decisions. (i.e. Adulthood)

I mentioned the other day that I attended the Bridal Expo in Times Square.  The more time that passes the more I regret that decision. I mean they should have just called the place "The Liar Expo" because it was nothing but big, heaping, steamy piles of bullshit.  And the worst part is I totally fell for it which really ticks me off!  I mean I don't fall for anything anymore.  I've had my share of run-ins with the NY scammers; the "can I ask where you get your hair done?" ladies and the "do you like free comedy?" dudes.  I've learned my lessons the hard way, but I guess that's what happens when you have little guidance and move to NY at 19.  I don't judge myself because I learned my lesson.  Cut to present day and I'm getting duped all over again!  What a wedding won't do to a sane girl's head.

The day after the event I got a call from a representative from Laser Cosmetica telling me I'd won $500 in free services.  My initial reaction?  Yeaaaah right.  But they piqued my interest so I checked out their website and the Photo Facial was too much for me to resist.  Who doesn't want to look like a photograph all the time??  Who, I ask!?  No one that's who.  But wait, let me back this train up.  The first call I received went like this:
















SALES LADY: Hiyeeee!  Can I speak with Gleeennis Mc... Murree?

ME: (sigh) This is she.

















SALES LADY: HIYEE!  I'm calling from Laser Cosmetica!  We met at the Bridal Expo...

ME: Let me just stop you there, I'm really not interested, but thank you.

*click*

I hate to be rude (no I don't), but why waste anyone's time.  But then I thought about it and, as I said, checked out their website and that little seed of doubt sprouted roots and started growing.  What if I had won?  What if I really could look like a photograph all the time?  WHO, I ASK YOU, DOESN'T WANT THAT!?  And I was just the teeniest bit regretful that I'd been so rude.

Cut to: the following day when I receive another call which I was a little more pleased to receive.

ME: Hello?













SALES LADY 2: Good morning, good morning, good morning!  Can I please speak with Gl...eeeenis?  Mc... Murray?

ME: This is she.














SALES LADY 2: Hello!  I'm calling from Laser Cosmetica!  We met at the Bridal Expo on Tuesday and I have some very exciting news for you!  You've won $500 in free services!  Congratulaaaations!

ME: Thanks!














SALES LADY 2: So what I'd like to do is set up a time for you to come in for a FREE consultation!  What does your schedule look like for the next year?

ME: Listen, I'm in the middle of something can you email me the information?














SALES LADY 2: OH sure!  I'll get that right out to you.

ME: Thanks!  Bye.

*click*

And in all honesty I was in the middle of something: a delicious bowl of cereal.  Still half thinking it was a scam I emailed my ladies to get their thoughts and they all seemed to be of the "go for it!" train of thought so I figured - what's the harm?  But when I posted my good news on Facebook I heard from a few people that they were charged by Laser Cosmetica for services they never received.  Ooooh you dirty little liars!  I received an email from LC, but ignored it and thanked the gods I hadn't gone for the consultation.  Nothing worse than pushy sales ladies working on commission. Nothing.

Cut to: Friday day when I check my phone and find a voice mail from, who else, Laser Cosmetica saying, "Hello Glennis!  I see you've recently booked a consultation with us on October 30th at 3pm..." I didn't hear the rest of the message because, in the middle of Costco, I shouted "liars!"  OK I wasn't in Costco, but that sounds much more dramatic doesn't it?  (I mean I went to Costco earlier that day which is another blog post in itself - oh my lawd - but at the time when I received the call I was in the car and that's just not the same.)  Anywaybebaby... I immediately called the "spa" back and got their voice mail.  "You've reached Laser Cosmetica.  We are either on the other line or with a client."  Please.  I probably called some chick's apartment while she was dropping a steamer.  So I left the following message, "Hello, this is Glennis McMurray.  I received a call from one of your sales associates saying I'd booked a consultation with your office on October 30th at 3pm.  I did not book a consultation, nor will I be booking one whether it's free or you're paying me.  Do not call me again.  Thank you."  And then I did a little high five dance because that, my friends, is how ya do.

But the saga continues!  An hour later, after purchasing some sweet Halloween decorations at the dollar store in Billyburg, I got a call from the "head office" (her bathroom) of Laser Cosmetica.















"HEAD OFFICE" DOUCHE: Hello can I talk to GLENNIS, please?

ME: This is she.
















 "HEAD OFFICE" FARTSUCKER: You called to cancel your consultation with...

ME: No.. I never BOOKED a consultation.

 














"HEAD OFFICE" POOSNIFFER: (In a very condescending voice.) You didn't call and speak with Shaneesha to book a consultation for October 30th at 3pm?

ME: No.  I did not.

 














"HEAD OFFICE" BUTTGRABBER: Oh really?

ME: (wtf!) Yes.  REALLY!

 














"HEAD OFFICE" SNOTLICKER: Okaaay then!  Have a good day!

ME: (Matching her snottiness.) You too!!

*click*

WOW.  I mean... wow.  Flames of furry shooting out my face holes!!

Lying as a kid is one thing.  Lying as an adult trying to do business, another.  How about this, Laser Cosmetica... how about you don't trick people into booking your services and dupe them out of thousands of dollars (talk to Ms. Marcy Jarreau on that one) in order to stay afloat.  I, for one, will never do business with you and I'm pretty sure anyone with half a brain who googles you after one of your "congratulations!" calls will steer clear as well.

Oh, and... CONGRATULATIONS Laser Cosmetica!  You're all dirty liars!

Love,

Glennis