“Vampire Leprechaun”

Dear Reader,

Things have been rather busy for me as of late, though no more than usual I suppose. I’ve been working hard waitressing and working with kids through the Educational Service Center as well as filming and doing some promotional things to network more. Things with Already Indie have been going very well and we just released another episode:

I think I am starting to get more comfortable in front of the camera then when I started working with the AI group. Naturally, I still have a long way to go, but there are things that I noticed from the first episode I did that improved with this episode. A lot of it has to do with confidence and the more confidence I have in my performance, the better the performance will be. There is also a commercial that we shot for this that you can also find on YouTube.

As I stated before, I have been working more with kids at the ESC and I absolutely love doing it. It never ceases to fascinate me how intelligent kids really are and how these first few years of their lives can completely set the standard for who they will be in the future. I had a great moment with one of our first grade students where I was able to help him figure out how to do long addition problems by using tally marks. It was a great feeling, especially because he had previously been reprimanded for sitting and staring at a problem for too long (the teachers just thought that he didn’t want to do it so he was just procrastinating to waste time). It also kind of annoys me to see people simply write things off as misbehavior, when most of the time there is more to the story than that. One of the more interesting things that happened was that several of the students deemed me a “vampire leprechaun.” The vampire part is due to my incredibly pale skin and slightly sharper than normal incisors. The leprechaun part was because of my red hair and my ability to find four-leaf clovers without really looking. This was a gift I evidently inherited from my great-grandfather, who would walk along the fields and would randomly bend over, pick one up, and throw it out into the field. I discovered this when I was very young and would be walking around outside and just randomly see one and pick it up. One would think that this would mean I have good luck, but it seems that it only applies to finding four-leaf clovers.

One of the four four-leaf clovers I was able to find at work one afternoon

Aside from the things previously stated, life has been fairly quiet. I finally got around to ordering business cards from Vistaprint and I had the opportunity to hang out with some of the radio crew the other day which was a lot of fun. I am hoping things will start picking up for me again soon, but that may not be until after I find a new place to live in this area as my lease is up soon. I am still waiting for acting work, but my casting manager is confident that I should be hearing back from people fairly soon. The most I can do now is be patient and ready for whatever comes at me.

“Have courage for the great sorrows of life and patience for the small ones; and when you have laboriously accomplished your daily task, go to sleep in peace.” – Victor Hugo

Already Indie!

Hello dear readers!

Time for another update from yours truly and this time, I have stuff to report!

As far as the book goes, keep an eye out for a Kickstarter project that I am going to be putting up. More on that once I get that up and running, just a forewarning.

More importantly, I recently did some film work with a fantastic bunch of people for the web-series Already Indie!

Already Indie: Where you are a Film Maker! The web-series is designed to teach others about the basics of low-budget filmmaking. They go over things such as special effects makeup, making your own equipment, proper film techniques, etc. all for an affordable price. It’s incredibly informative and although I have done special effects makeup for a couple of years now, I still learned things that will definitely help me out in the future. In this clip, I am guest hosting the web show as well as doing the voiceover. I had a lot of fun, but looking over the clip a few times has told me that I still have a way to go about being in front of the camera. I am hoping to have more opportunities to act for these guys, but honestly, I am just happy to be a part of such a rewarding web-series. Even if I don’t act as much in future shows, they have already said that they would like me to help out with things such as writing and perhaps using one of my many skills to help them in future episodes. Tomorrow I head out with them again to work on some things and I am definitely looking forward to it!

One of the goals that they mentioned having was to showcase some of the local talent in this area and I couldn’t agree more. There is so much more talent around Northern Ohio than people realize. Growing up in a small town in the middle of Ohio has helped me to see why though. Despite their best efforts, schools don’t always have programs to aid students of different skills. For example, up until I was a freshman in high school, we didn’t have a drama club. Even when we got one, it was a struggle to keep it going, not for lack of interest, but for an initial lack of support from the school itself. Gradually, this changed over time as they began to see a need for it and now we have a wonderful program going that I can only hope will continue to grow. Unfortunately, in other schools this is not always the case. So much talent is wasted because the focus is put on one or two things (sports and academics, that was the school I grew up in). I am hoping that this web-series will not only create interest to do these sort of things, but also create an awareness that there is ALWAYS more talent around then what meets the eye. It just needs the chance to come out and for people to try to see if they can do it, rather than assuming that it’s all too expensive or that they will fail.

Aside from that, I’ve finally started hearing back about auditions and possible jobs in the film industry! It is only a matter of time before I start getting the opportunity to go out and start actively applying for acting positions and I couldn’t be more excited. Nor could it have come at a better time, especially with school loan payments being right around the corner. However, I am trying to keep a realistic mindset about things: I will get turned down. That is a given, but I will not always get turned down. So the goal is to stay positive, but to also realize that this is a rough industry and I’m not always going to be lucky. Despite all of this, this is what I want to do with my life, uncertainty and all. I would not have gone into this if I didn’t think I could succeed on some level or another. I won’t lie, I’m terrified about having to make payments and always being unsure of where I will find work, but I’m in way too far to turn around and crawl back out. I don’t want to do that either; I have never once doubted that this was what I was meant to be. Fear is merely a part of being alive and I’ve had enough of it in my life to know that I can not only handle it, but often times overcome it in ways I never thought possible. So here’s hoping for the best and should I fail, there’s always going to be other jobs to fall back on and I already know that I can fold myself into a box.

A photo of me during a scare-actor/haunted house kind of gig. The box is two feet deep, no joke!

“Courage is resistance to fear, mastery of fear, not absence of fear.” – Mark Twain

Random Acts!

Hello again!

The past few weeks have been incredibly busy for me and a lot of things have happened!

I have made the decision to stay where I am for the summer. I will be subletting for a friend and working to raise money so that I may eventually move to somewhere where there is more work. This decision was greatly affected by the opportunity I was given to join Random Acts, a traveling theatre troupe based in Ohio (for the time being). Not only is this a paid acting job (which is awesome), but it also gives me the opportunity to travel to potential living spaces while continuing to build up my résumé. This past Saturday was our first performance, which was in honor of the 100th anniversary of the sinking of the Titanic, entitled “A Titanic Mystery.”

I got to wear a replica of the Heart of the Ocean necklace from the film, “Titanic”

In this production (which I managed to learn in a week, memorization powers activate!), I played Madeline Astor, the character that Rose from “Titanic” was supposedly based on. The mystery part of this show focused on the whereabouts of the necklace throughout the production. The show was written by the director of Random Acts and a LOT of research was put into the show. The majority of the characters were all based upon people who were on the Titanic and we performed the show for a group of Titanic aficionados, who really knew their stuff! The show went splendidly despite a few technical difficulties and I am looking forward to our next production in a few weeks.

Onto Lionface news, we have unfortunately lost the space that we were to perform “Murder in the Cathedral” in. We were set to finish up paperwork and whatnot regarding the space when someone pointed out that there was already an event scheduled to be held there. So, for the time being, we are looking into different venues. Unfortunately, this is not the first time this has happened to us, but we always seem to manage in one way or another and I have no doubt that we will find another space that will work just as well.

Aside from my work waitressing, I have been getting more hours doing another thing I love to do: working with kids!

A gift from one of the many kids I work with

Kids provide endless fascination for me in that they are so much smarter than people seem to think. A lot of times, adults will try to shelter children and claim that they are simply to young to understand anything. I strongly disagree with this sentiment, I have watched children K-6 come up with their own unique characters, write their own play, build their own set, design their own costumes, AND perform their show for their parents all over the course of a summer. When faced with a challenge, some kids rise to the occasion even more than the majority of adults do. Recently, I had the opportunity to teach another theatrical makeup workshop with a few kids from one of the schools I’ve worked at. I was amazed at how quickly they were able to pick it up and soon they were creating designs and applying them better than a lot of high school and/or college students. I think the difference lies in enthusiasm, oftentimes the older we get the less enthusiastic we are about trying our new things. I believe that as we get older, sometimes we are less likely to want to try new things in fear that we will fail at them. Kids don’t tend to have that sort of hesitation, sure they might get upset if they fail the first time, but they seem to be more likely to try them again until they get them right. This is all my opinion, of course, but I think the world would be a lot different if we would take some of these childlike mentalities and apply them to our own lives.

I’m sure I will have more to write later, but as there are still things that I need to finish, I’ll leave it at this. Thanks for reading!

“If you don’t know where you are going, any road will get you there.” – Lewis Carroll

Moving On

As I reflect on the last few months and my time in this town and my apartment dwindle away, I realize that I don’t have a lot of time left here. The simple fact of the matter is, I have to move on in order to continue my life and career. It’s a bittersweet realization in that there are people who I will sorely miss when I go, such as my Lionface and college friends, all the friends I’ve met through doing comedy, and work colleagues turned friends. Yet there are people and situations surrounding me that I would rather forget. I’m a believer in the idea that life is too short to be around people who make you feel like shit. Hence the bittersweet feeling, there are pros and cons to moving on.

Which brings me to my next point: Where am I going? The answer: Not entirely sure. So I’m listing some pros and cons for the top three locations that have been recommended to me for various reasons. Note: I’m not including monetary investments in the pros/cons because that’s sort of a given. Of course I’m going to have to think about money issues, but I don’t want to have to repeat myself on that particular note.

Don’t worry, we’ll get through this together. I have interspersed happy puppy pictures to keep this from getting too heavy.

Location 1: Los Angeles

Pros:

  • This is where my company would like for me to go. They believe that there is a lot more work for me there and that, due to my age and young appearance, I will be cast more readily then someone who goes there without representation or looks a great deal older than their age. Plus, they have enough connections in the area that they assured me that I would have an easier time finding side work to help pay the bills while I am auditioning and performing elsewhere.
  • Health-wise, this would probably be a good move for me. I’ve always had issues with my health that has kind of been attributed to Ohio’s constant changing of weather and cold winter. Therefore, living somewhere with a more steady weather pattern might not be a bad idea.

Cons:

  • I have almost no contacts in LA. Oddly enough, being and actor and a comedian, I have yet to actually meet someone who has lived in or will be living in LA. Yes, I am supposed to be starting off fresh, but having one or two contacts that can show me around would be EXTREMELY beneficial. Plus, I have no doubt that it gets lonely in a new place and I have enough anxiety issues as it is to not have at least one person that I can talk to in the area.
  • Let’s be real, I am a very fair-skinned ginger. There is no tan for me, I go straight to burn in a matter of minutes. When I burn badly enough, I can get incredibly sick, which would naturally prevent me from working. Not to mention the fact that an actor’s appearance is a huge selling point in the industry. If I walk into an audition with a face that matches my hair, that might not leave a very good impression. A minor con, perhaps, but still something to think about.

ZOMG! He’s so happy!!!!

Location 2: Chicago

Pros:

  • I have a lot of connections in Chicago! This could help me find a job to do on the side while attending auditions and whatnot. Plus, I would have people to be able to show me around the city and possibly help me with networking. This would also be beneficial health wise for me so that if I am having any problems or am in an accident there is someone in the area I could call to help me out.
  • It is a great deal closer to home for me, which is a big deal for me. I come from a very close family and while they drive me nuts on occasion, it has always been good for me to be only a few hours away as opposed to a few states away. My biggest concern would be not being able to get home in time if there was a big emergency. Naturally, I have to go where the work is, but if I went to Chicago, this would be less of a concern since I would be able to make it back if I absolutely needed to versus if I would have to take an airplane or a train or something.

Cons:

  • While they are currently in the process of trying to set up an office in Chicago, the company that I am associated with does not currently have any representatives in Chicago. Since they are the focal point of my career, this is a problem. I would most likely have to leave Chicago quite often to attend auditions or work, which can not only be pricy, it would also be extremely stressful.
  • From the various connections I have in Chicago, I have learned that finding side work is not very easy. Within the past couple of years, Chicago has become a hotspot for aspiring actors, so the competition is fierce. While I am confident in the skills I have, I do need to take this into consideration, especially as far as side work is concerned. If there are hundreds of aspiring actors in one place, no doubt they are looking for side work as well in order to be able to stay in the city as long as possible.

A wild happy dog appears! SO HAPPY!!!

Location 3: New York

Pros:

  • Once again, this is a place in which I have a few connections. Perhaps not as many as I would in Chicago, but I do have friends in this area. And as I stated before, this is kind of a big deal to me.
  • The company I work for does have an office in New York, so I would not have to travel out-of-town as much in order to attend auditions for find work. Mind you, I probably still would have to on occasion, but there is a greater chance of me finding work without having to go outside of the city.

Cons:

  • As with Chicago, New York is full of aspiring actors and not only that, but aspiring business men and women as well. To say the least, New York is pretty packed. Not to mention the fact that for a single, young female living on her own, it does have the possibility of being dangerous. I am not an idiot by any means and I do know ways of protecting myself, but I’m also not foolish enough to think that this isn’t something to worry about.
  • Once again, finding side work presents itself as an issue for me to consider. In New York, I am not only competing against actors but performers in general. I would be elsewhere as well, but from what I’ve heard New York is more difficult to find work in. Many people attempt to get a job there first before every moving into the area to begin with. So if I were to even consider going to New York (or honestly anywhere) I would want to make sure that I at least had a job waiting for me when I get there.

If you made it to this point than kudos to you! Glad to see my ramblings have not thrown you off immensely, I hope that happy puppy pictures helped. Since you did make it this far, I would like to ask your opinion on this matter. Additionally, if you know anything about the living and/or job situation in either of these three cities, I would love to discuss it with you and perhaps clear up any misconceptions I might have. I await your comments!

Thanks for reading!

“And who knows, maybe starting a new journey won’t be so hard or perhaps it has already begun.” – KH1

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Meghan O. Koesters was born and raised in a small town in Ohio. She was first introduced to theatre in 2004 and has performed ever since. Her most notable appearances on the stage include Lavinia in Titus Andronicus, Harriet in Boy Gets Girl, and Avril in Bird and Fish. At age 22, Koesters published her first children’s picture book on technical and backstage theatre. Around this time, she also began to do stand up comedy and modeling. Most recently, Koesters graduated from Bowling Green State University with Bachelor’s Degree in Arts and Communication with a specialization in Theatre: Acting/Directing and English. Currently, she resides in Northwest Ohio working with Lionface Productions.

For booking inquiries, please contact Meghan O. Koesters at meghankoesters@gmail.com

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