Happy Birthday. Father.

When I was a kid, even now, people around us thought my dad was not as present as he should be, or that he was too hard on us, or that he should do better in this and do better in that. Everyone always has something to say. Under our particular circumstances I think he did a remarkable job. I just wanted to say thank you.

My dad was visibly a single dad for 3 years. From when I was born until he met my stepmom. And even then – he was a single dad. Just, a “married” single dad.

He worked 5 days a week, 8 hours to 10 hours a day. After which he would either come home and cook or bring home Chinese takeout. When my brother and I were older, we began to cook. Then he would placate my stepmother for hours until she would let him sleep and then repeat.

On the weekends my dad would tend to the garden, run errands, buy groceries and cook the legendary meals I know him so well for.  He did pretty much everything.  He did pretty much everything with more patience and endurance than any other human could, in the situation we were in.

Thank you Dad, for providing for us.

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From my dad, I learned the foundation of being an epic human being. He is huge part of why I have a passion for communicating with my fellow human. He taught me the value of patience and how practice makes perfect.  When I was growing up my dad would play ping pong with me in the basement and teach me that repetition and perseverance is how we become better at something.

“I fear not the man who has practiced 10 000 kicks once, but I fear the man who has practiced one kick, 10 000 time. ” Bruce Lee.

This is where I get my dedication from. People always regard me as someone who’s very active and seems to be involved in a lot of things. However, those who know me well, know that I don’t just randomly dabble in things. They know that when I am faced with a new challenge I tend to face it again and again and again until I get it. Or at least until I progress. Then I might take a step back and try again later.

Thank you Dad, for teaching me dedication.

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One of my favourite things that my Dad would do for me (and still does on occasion), was that he would bring home a Readers Digest magazine whenever he received the latest subscription.  I never really thought much about it until about high school, when I realized that while everyone else around me was reading Fashion and entertainment magazines I was always drawn to community stories and real life inspiring stories. I really believe that because of this little tradition of exposing me  to Reader’s Digest magazines, I became a better human. A human that thought more about others and learned compassion and to this day draw from lessons that some of those stories taught me.

For instance some of you may even be familiar with the story about  about Major James Nesmeth. He was a man that spent seven years in North Vietnam as a prisoner of war. For seven years he lived in solitary confinement inside a prison cell that was not high enough for him to even crouch and barely long enough or him to lay down. To keep from losing his mind and hope, he began to find ways to occupy his mind. He started to play 18 holes of golf in his mind, everyday.  He imagined each stroke, every smell and every possible detail. He visualized his technique and swing every day.  After seven years, he was released from prison and returned home. He played his first game of golf in over seven years and scored a perfect game.

The story has been told many times and the score and detail vary slightly, but the takeaway was ingrained in me from a very young age. I still think about that story and I have been using it in pretty much every thing I do. From sports, to pottery to manifesting my successes.

Thank you Dad for feeding my brain and for giving me the opportunity to learn through Reader’s Digest.

 

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Lastly I wanted to thank my D ad for this. Thank you for always pushing yourself to be better, stronger, wiser, and kinder. You heal with patience and laughter, and you treat those around you with compassion.  From your example Pablo and I challenge ourselves to do the same.

Thank you Dad, for challenging us.

Thank you  Dad, for growing.

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Thank you to Russell Thomas for inspiring me to paint in the style of Wild Colour Portraiture.

The Great Human Odyssey: Darren Fung From Sgt. To Composer

Personal growth is something I am constantly struggling with and then there are instances when I see someone else I know grow, that ignites something inside me and I suddenly can overcome my own complacency.

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The Next Phase 

It dawned on me while watching my friends perform an incredible show of Into the Woods directed by Paul Gélineau, that I may never perform on a main stage like Keyano Theatre again.

It comes with mixed feelings, to say the least. I feel like the most creative years of my life have been these past 5.5 years in Fort Mcmurray. Though never a lead role, I still get people approaching me and commenting on how they’ve seen me in this show or that. I think for many performers that is the greatest reward – to be recognized for your art.

All is not lost though. Because even this evening during the reception at the end of the show I was approached by two screaming girls. I couldn’t even begin to make out what they were saying, but for some reason they were so happy to see me! Their speech was slurred due to a combination of alcohol and excitement and one asked me if she could show me to her friends. An odd request I thought, but who am I to argue with fans? 

So off I followed this girl with the beautiful tight white dress and decorated with black feathers.  A few moments later she brings me to these two gentleman and I finally understand what’s happened. 

“Omg it’s her! It’s her! ” there’s a group of 6 or 8 people screaming and pointing! “You’re the girl in the photo!” “You’re the girl that photo bombed us! We’ve been looking for you everywhere!”
So apparently during intermission….( As I do with all photo bombing opportunities) I jumped into the photo of this group and made the best face I could.  

   
Lo and behold it turns out that I became “photobomb famous” in an evening. The group actually had a bet that whoever could find me would get 10 points. And each person made it their perogative to seek me out. Flattered, I am! Really! 

  
Anyways, it really was a great night. Filled with admiration of my amazing friends who blew my mind on stage and a sense of loss for what I feel I’ve only recently discovered and now I must leave it.

One of the other things that brings my journey to a full circle is seeing one of my dental hygiene clients that I’ve seen since I’ve moved to Fort Mcmurray. For the past few years he’s seen my shows and supported me. And everytime I see him I tell him to audition. He always said maybe but he wasn’t sure if it was his thing. 

And just a few months ago he called me up and offered me tickets to see him perform in A Few Good Men. It was such an amazing moment, to see someone actualize their ambition. 

Tonight I saw him and he wished me well on my new phase and it really accentuated the fact that I have indeed come full circle. 

Thank you Keyano Theatre and all my theatre friends.  You have reminded me of a love I once thought lost and you have reinvigorated a  passion within me that I thought I did not need. 

It is a difficult thing to say goodbye, but it is not goodbye but rather a so long. For I will see you all once again, upon a stage, beyond the stage and before the stage. 

The Naked Me. Bean there, done that.

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Then. Now. And Later.

I spend many moments in my life reflecting on where I am now, where I was before and where I want to be – later. And one of this moments happened while I was standing on a box, lit by spot lights, surrounded by 4 canvasses, and 4 students – naked.

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