Category Archives: Acting

10 Reasons My College Improv Troupe Was Some of the Best People I’ll Ever Meet

It would have been easy to be the outcast when I joined my college improvisational comedy troupe. I was different and naive in so many ways—a sober, prude, Catholic girl with zero fashion sense tossed into a hodgepodge of intelligent, talented, funny students who made witty political commentary and iconic pop culture references that sailed far above my bouncing ponytail.

I could have been singled out for navigating college in an unorthodox way and not having the common knowledge to understand that Bono is a person, not a thing, but somehow, these people found their way onto my list of favorite humans. And if you ask them, I’d venture to guess that one of their favorite things about me is the fact that I am so different.


In college, I was lucky to land myself in an improv troupe that treated me like family. Being a member of Ohio Wesleyan University’s Babbling Bishops might very well be my fondest college experience. This group of humorous souls trickled their way into my heart and became some of the best people I’ve ever known, and here’s why.

improv comedy

They know empathy.

Good actors are empathetic. In order to portray someone else–funny or not–you have to be able to put yourself in their shoes. My improv friends are the type of empathetic people who have embarked upon career paths that actively give back to others and fill a great void in this world, from artists to scientists to mental health professionals and beyond.

They understand patience.

In order to be a successful (read: entertaining) improv troupe, everyone has to practice together. It takes time and effort to reach that level of group mind where you’re so fast on your feet with each other that the audience feels like they’re watching a scripted comedy of errors. The best improv team doesn’t take jabs for cheap laughs but rather slowly builds up a scene until the audience is guffawing and chortling like your weird aunt at Thanksgiving dinner.

improv comedy

They practice inclusivity.

The most challenging, authentic, open-minded conversations I had regarding my Catholic faith occurred with my atheist improv friends. Comedy isn’t determined by your religion, skin color, gender identity, sexuality, or physical appearance. You can be a frizzy-haired, pimpled, handicapped, biracial lesbian or you can be a buff, straight, cisgendered hunk of a man. The one with the skills to be a team player in an improv comedy show makes the troupe.

They engage supportively.

Improv is a team activity, not an individual one. When a member is struggling on or off the stage, the group is there to pick you up. When I was in the hospital with a head injury, my improv troupe piled into cars and drove forty minutes on a school night to visit me. When I couldn’t perform for a month because of subsequent speech problems, they let me introduce the shows and watch from the stage.

improv comedy

They exude compassion.

During an improv show, you don’t want your partner to fail, so you don’t leave them hanging out to dry. Then and now, few people have offered me more compassion in my break-ups, career changes, anxiety struggle, and battle with Lyme disease than these humans that I acted like a fool with in college.

They live honestly.

Comedians are funny people, which means you generally see them as happy people. But those who have the highest of highs can also have the lowest of lows. Many of my improv friends are open publicly or personally about their life struggles. They share the good and the bad on social media, actively encouraging others to live authentically.

improv comedy

They take risks.

Achieving group mind requires being vulnerable with each other. In a show, you put yourself out there regardless of whether or not you get a laugh. The improvisers who surrounded me in college are the ones who hiked the Appalachian Trail, traveled on a cross-country amends road trip, and took a giant leap from the secure present with no idea about the future because they believed in themselves enough to make it to the other side.

They seek self-awareness.

Being an improviser means knowing your strengths and weaknesses. My troupe members have consistently expanded their quest for mindfulness beyond the theatre, searching for who they are and what their place is in this world. If they can’t find their purpose, they make one.

improv comedy

They stand committed.

On stage, you can’t abandon your partner. You ride through the bumps in a rocky scene until you get to the end. Now, post-graduation and full-on adult-living, we’re still friends, no matter the geography or complications that arise. Improvisers don’t run away from difficult conversations and they don’t turn their backs on their choices.

They are carefree.

All of us in the Babbling Bishops have our insecurities, but we’re also the ones you’ll see dancing like escaped zoo animals in the bar, in the kitchen, in the grocery store, or at the bus stop, with absolute and complete reckless abandon, with no care to the eyebrows raised in our direction. We carpe diem, baby, because we know we only have one chance at life on earth, and we’re going to choreograph our way through it however we darn well please.

improv comedy

In no other group of people have I ever been more different but felt more accepted than with the Babbling Bishops. We share a bond that no distance or time can shake.

Improv taught me skills to pave my way through life as an adult. It also granted me lasting friendships with people that I look up to, good people whose accomplishments and existence constantly inspire me to be a better person. Somehow, I was lucky enough to become an unlikely member of a family of hilarious yet compassionate misfits.


improv comedy


Talking to Angels

Last week, I had the honor of being the sole actor in a short film written by Jennifer DiMarco following an eight-world plot that I submitted. I asked her to challenge me with song and dance, as I’ve not done either onscreen before—and very few people have witnessed me sing or dance for reals.

But the script turned out to be so much more meaningful and challenging than I could have expected. Here’s why:

Eight years ago, I was hospitalized after two back-to-back concussions caused me to faint and lose motor control of my speech. As someone who speaks her mind every day, whose love language is words of affirmation, it was terrifying. But I kept much of that terror to myself, and instead outwardly turned my fear and frustration into humor.

Yet now, I find myself embarking upon careers that rely solely on communication. Since my injury, I have vowed to never take my voice for granted.

Dance and music have become prominent modalities of self-expression in my life. While many of you have witnessed my comedic (and surprisingly sober) lyrical interpretations at the bar, the beach and the sidewalk, so much goes on behind closed doors. I don’t just sing and dance when I’m happy. I sing and dance when I’m frustrated, scared, angry, and sad. I sing and dance when I have something to say and something to feel, but too often I do it in the shadows of my home.

No more.

“Talking to Angels” is my first film dancing debut with movement that is “haunting, sorrowful, strange and mesmerizing” (Jennifer’s words!). I thought it would be laborious to choreograph but the script and music so moved me, I ended up completing it within two hours. “Talking to Angels” is my first film singing debut with a “wordless, peaceful and haunting” (Jennifer’s words!) Gregorian chant that I wrote in the shower. Singing without words is not easy. Challenge accepted.

I play Cynthia Locklear, a soldier on a generation starship who hears voices in an alternate universe. Only she hears them. Only she speaks to them. “Talking to Angels” will be a contender at the Take 8 Film Festival in April. I’m so very nervous and so very excited, but also so very grateful for this script that is, itself, mesmerizing.

Not a Method Actor…

I’m going unplugged for a week. I might have service where I’m going, but I might not. I won’t be looking at my phone. I won’t be bringing my computer.

I’m going to dive into the life of Alice Godwin, a woman who is haunted, lost and searching for answers and closure from the past. A poet whose ups and downs are controlled by stimulants and depressants. A role for which I googled “how to take shots” and watched videos titled things like “adults drunk for the first time,” then rehearsed in a mirror with a shot glass full of water that I somehow happened to have and nearly threw my neck out over-exaggerating my portrayal of the art of drinking tequila. A character who is in some ways like me but, clearly, unlike me in so many others.

I am going to tell Alice’s story, along with the story of three other female writers and the unsolved murder of the family that came before them. Beware “The Unspoken”—it’s as haunting as it is empowering.

My Feature Film Premiere

On Jan. 22, I will be sitting in the audience of my first ever feature film premiere. And let me tell you, it’s giving me all the feels.
In the psychological thriller “The Trees Have Names,” I play Dr. Barbara Riley, head doctor at an insane asylum. And guess what? You can watch me play a doctor in one of 2 ways: in the theatre or streaming online.
So listen up, friends in Florida, Ohio, Denmark, Jamaica, Bahamas and Australia–you’ve got no excuse. Follow this link to purchase the $10 premiere tickets.
Throughout the filming process, I explored new parts of the beautiful state of Washington, learned drastic differences between film and stage acting, and networked with colleagues who have become friends.
This is what working for an independent film company means to me. With Blue Forge Productions, I’m a member of a growing artistic family. BFP was founded by backyard dreamers who encourage all of us backyard dreamers to achieve greatness. They don’t set standards with a high budget; they set standards with a heart of gold.
The first five weeks of the year, I’m working on five–yes that’s right FIVE–film projects with Blue Forge Productions. So be on the lookout for BIG announcements coming at you over the next few weeks.
As always, thank you for supporting my dreams. Now, go follow yours!

Headshots, IMDb, & Following My Dreams


I have a hard time sitting still, so you can imagine how short the iPhone amateur affordable headshot photo shoot was with my sister. It’s like trying to get that perfect picture of a Labrador Retriever puppy. Wave some food in front of the camera and you’ll have one chance to get that shot, so you better not miss it. Yes, I am motivated by food.

I much prefer a candid, natural snapshot to a posed one. Photos of genuine laughter are my absolute favorite.

But ten months ago, when I set out on this creative journey, my sister captured a look that could work for my auditions, that didn’t feel like me posing in front of a camera. A smile that said, You wait for it world; I’m comin’ at ya. And eyes that said, Rejection, you don’t scare me.

And now this barfy headshot is staring you in the face telling you to follow your dreams. Because I did, I am. And I think the world is a little better off because of it.

Check out my IMDb page that, like my dreams, will always be a work in progress.

And if you ever get lost, anxious, or frustrated on the road to your dreams, hit me up. ‘Cuz I been thurr, done that.

P.S. I do need legit headshots so if you know anyone with experience taking photos of dogs, I’d be a good subject.

The Broccoli Apocalypse

Yes, that’s right. I co-wrote a play called “The Broccoli Apocalypse.” And co-directed. And I’ll be co-starring in it, too!


This short futuristic comedy celebrates Fringe Month (experimental theatre!). It’s part of The Libertinis’ Matchmaker Showcase which paired together strangers to create a mini masterpiece in 4 weeks.

“The Broccoli Apocalypse” was the result of brainstorming with my partner-turned-friend. It follows the human connection between bohemian graphic designer Tula (me!) and corporate guru Joan (Sunny Monroe), who is living the American Dream. The duo interact in the bathroom of the frozen food company they work for during times of a crumbling economy, climate change, global food shortages, and spiraling international trade relations.

And it’s a comedy, you say? Yes, of course. Because Tula has an Etsy store that sells hats for cats, so she might make it out of this thing alive.

If you’re in Seattle, come check it out at the Pocket Theater on Oct. 29 @ 8:30 PM.

Unsteady, A Tribute to Friendships Through Body Poetry

Dear Friends,

The past 12 months have been particularly difficult for me. As the 1-year anniversary nears of Hurricane Joaquin–the catalyst to a year of countless uphill battles–I can’t help reflecting on the strength I’ve found through friendships. I feel like I’ve aged 15 years in this short time, but I would have aged 30 years if it weren’t for those who love me unconditionally.

I wondered how I could express my gratitude to you all. It only seemed fitting that I offer you my creative side, because you all have been so supportive of me following my creative dreams. So on this Labor Day, I present to you my labor of love. This is my love song, my poetry, to you.