Guest blog by Ella Rescigno
What a summer! Now that I am back from 20 days in NYC, I can reflect on all of the wonderful things I was able to do this summer. My mom reminds me of a quote she loves, “Dance. Smile. Giggle. Marvel. TRUST. HOPE. LOVE. WISH. BELIEVE. Most of all, enjoy every moment of the journey, and appreciate where you are at this moment instead of always focusing on how far you have to go.”
Every single day of my summer was spent doing what I love. I am passionate about singing and acting, I love dancing, I enjoy spending time with friends that love what I love, and I’m a dreamer. My family encourages my dreams and I am blessed by God to get to chase them. I started my summer performing in my dream role, Jane Banks. You see, at age five I saw the Broadway production of Mary Poppins. I sat on a booster seat and cried as Mary left the children. When it ended I told my mom that I would be on that stage one day. Sure enough, Mrs. Shannon cast me as Jane Banks. It was a role that I will always remember and I am grateful for the opportunity. I spent time learning blocking, music and lines. I enjoyed meeting many new people at Town and got to spend my days at my favorite Columbia Theater.
For me, it all started at Town. I was five and joined Mrs. Jamie’s youth program. I was Oz in the Magical Land of Oz, young Cosette in Les Mis and Susan Waverly in White Christmas. Little did all the people surrounding me know that they were feeding my love and my hopes for the future. When I finished my last performance as Jane Banks, I flew out the next morning to begin rehearsals in my very first Off Broadway production of Dream Street. I was cast in the lead role as Lily. Our plane landed, we raced to our driver, and he dropped me off at Alvin Ailey American Dance Theatre. For 12 days I spent 8-10 hours in rehearsals with one 30 minute break each day. And honestly, I just wanted more. The production lasted six days on 42nd Street and it was a dream come true for me. One step closer to living my dream.
Our plan was to be home one day before school started. There are often things I don’t share, but I can share this one. I got a call from my agent in NYC, Abrams Artists Agency. They asked me to stay and audition for a CBS TV series and an equity National Tour of White Christmas. I stayed for both and was called back the following day. I felt great about both auditions and callbacks. Then comes the waiting. So many people ask me how I can wait and so often be told no. Unless you love it like I do, you may never understand. Auditions fill my soul, they fill me with excitement. The preparation, walking into the audition room, performing for people I’ve never met and then letting the process happen. By the time you reach a final callback, it’s not about your talent or ability anymore. It’s about a look, or your size, or your hair color, or your height compared to adult actors being cast. So to answer the question about how I do it and hear “no” so often. Well, “no” means not right now to me. It’s never final. It means “close this door and look for the next one to open.” It means “you made it to a final callback and just didn’t quite fit at the end.” It means “this isn’t the right timing, this isn’t God’s plan for you.”
I am positive about my future, I have thick skin and BIG dreams. So in the meantime, I will train train train. I will sing, I will dance, I will take acting classes for stage and camera, and I will trust that God’s perfect plan and timing will reveal itself. My family and true friends support everything I do. I am surrounded by an incredible team of “trainers” and I have an agency that wants to represent me right into adulthood. But most importantly, this is what I love. This is what makes me happy. What more could a theatre kid ask for!!