Saturday, January 16, 2010
Volume 1, Issue 1
That’s Me, Ben: A Weekly Blog
Hey guys! Ok, so I was just browsing downloads for Windows 7, and what did I come
to stumble upon? None other than a free download from Microsoft of a Beta version of Microsoft
Office 2010. I was so excited! It took a while to download, but it was well worth it.
I looked around and played with all of the new tools and options, and I will tell you, I
love it! I started using Outlook for the first time, and I think I’m going to stick with it, as I love
the calendar function of it. I really need that, especially with exams, auditions and shows coming
So anyway, back to my point. I was looking at Publisher, and I came across the tem-
plate for a newsletter, and I thought—instead of constantly blogging small, inconsistent posts,
why not gather up the whole week in one fell swoop and publish it in a newsletter-type thing? I
thought it would be great.
Also, a few things about the newsletter. The picture to the right here will always give
you an idea of what’s going on with me this week right off the bat. Also, forgive me if I don’t
publish the newsletter on the same day every week—I do have a life! :D I hope I can keep this
consistent, because I think it would be cool if I could keep this going.
Anyway, I hope you guys like, and please enjoy!
PLEASE KEEP MY MOM IN YOUR PRAYERS.
INSIDE THIS ISSUE:
On Thursday night, I was pulled out of my ACT UP rehearsal by my brother frantically
telling me that my mom had to be brought to the hospital. I immediately told my director that I
The Exams are Coming! ..........2
had to leave, and she told me to go. I ran out in the parking lot and my mom was reclined in her
Musical Skit Gone Wrong ........2
car. She couldn’t move, and she said it felt like “something exploded in her stomach”. The ambu-
New Lyrics ...............................2
lance came, and as we pulled out, I saw all of my cast mates from Oh, What a Tangled Web in a
prayer circle, praying for my mom. I thank you guys very, very much.
Audition Song ..........................3
I didn’t go to school Friday because my mom was still in the ER that morning. There
Broadway Salute ......................4
were no rooms available, so she had to stay there overnight. They ran tests in the morning, and
Quote of the Day ......................4
the results came back at around 3. She went into the OR at about 4. Her appendix had been
infected, and had to be removed.
Photo of the Day ......................4
That night, I went to visit my mom in her hospital room, which she finally had gotten.
She was way out of it, but that’s understandable, considering all of the drugs she’s on. But it did
surprise me—she looked very good for someone who had just recently come out of surgery. We
A LOOK INSIDE...
talked a little, but not too much. I’m going back tonight to visit again.
? Say a prayer for my mom—
I just wanted to say thank you again to everyone who has sent her their prayers and
she’s recovering well.
well-wishes. I especially want to say thank you to Ms. Darlene, my director, who continually
? A short story about a very
offers her help for my brother and I during these events, and our across-the-street neighbors, the
Rousseau's, who have ferried my brother and I back and forth to the hospital twice, fed us dinner
while my dad was at the hospital twice, and tolerated my brother overnight last night. Thank you
? I need to figure out an audi-
THE EXAMS ARE COMING, THE EXAMS ARE COMING!
Starting next week, I won’t be
still nervous about it.
looking forward to going to school. Tues-
As for Biology, sometimes I
day, January 19 heralds the start of mid-
wonder whether we’re actually learning
term exams at North Fort Myers High
everything we need to know for tests, and
School. The schedule is a little weird, but
more importantly, exams. Ms. Kramer, my
it will be nice to get out of school at 11:45
teacher, told us we can use our study
for three days.
guides on the exam, and any answers we
Monday we have no school, so
write on them. I’m taking that study guide,
you know what I’ll be doing—study, study,
doing all of the definitions (done) , and
study! I’m not really nervous about exams.
answering every one of those questions.
Actually...who am I kidding? I’m terrified
Yes, I’ll walk into that class with a study
of a few of them. Wednesday I have my
guide about 30 pages long. Yes, it will
Acting exam, which I’m nervous about. All
take a while to answer all those questions.
of the questions will be coming off of the
But will I ace the exam? Maybe not. But I
previous tests from this semester, but I’m
think I’ll come pretty darn close.
“We saw her in the hallway on performance day...but not in class during
rehearsal or our performance. Great day to skip, right?”
A WHOLE NEW
WORLD OF LYRICS
MUSICAL SKIT GONE WRONG
Two weeks after coming back from Winter Break, Mrs. Whitener assigned my
Acting 1 class an assignment that I thought would be my favorite assignment ever given to
As you probably read in the
me. We had to do a musical skit. It had to include two songs that we had to sing to with
article to the right, we had to
changed lyrics, and then a one-minute dance number. I could tell from that moment that
write new lyrics to a song. Since
my group did Aladdin, Amanda
I would love this.
and I wanted to sing “A Whole
New World”. A twist was also
My group was Paige, Amanda (the girl who was Alice in our tableaus), Rachel
necessary in the story, so we
Catherine, and another Amanda. We brainstormed for about a whole class period for
decided to make it that Jasmine
ideas on what story/movie we wanted to do. We ended up picking Aladdin. The more I
didn’t like Aladdin. Here are the
thought about it, the more it grew on me. Since I was the only guy in my group, I was
changed lyrics, starting from the
beginning, with Aladdin and
naturally selected to be Aladdin. Amanda was elected Jasmine, Paige as the Genie, Rachel
Catherine as Jafar, and the other Amanda as Abu, Raja, and Yago. We were finally ready
to start planning!
I can show you the world…
The first thing we did was the plot. We decided to keep it basically the same,
Just take me back to the palace.
except at the end, Jasmine leaves Aladdin for Jafar. So we did the scene where Jasmine is
almost caught stealing, the dungeon, the cave of wonders, the palace, and the Prince Ali
Oh, but princess just look at the
We choreographed the “Never Had a Friend Like Me” dance for our dance
I’d rather not.
number, and it was fun. Lots of spinning, and it was very big and Broadway-esque. I
But princess, look at all the
thought it was awesome. There was even a part where I quick-change from Aladdin to
“Prince Ali”! Amanda and I worked on our duet, and we worked on the group number,
“Prince Jafar” to the tune of “Prince Ali”.
Finally it was show day. I saw Rachel Catherine walking to class, but she wasn’t
in class when we had time to rehearse. Nor was she there when we had to perform. Great
day to skip, right? So we got Kayleigh, who was called to the office. We ended up having
Paige play Jafar as well as the Genie. It was horrible. Our group song fell apart, and it was
just...awful. Not proud of it. Maybe next time it’ll be better.
THE BROADWAY SA-
Act Up productions is having a
Knight On Broadway kind of thing
at the Alliance for the Arts called
The Broadway Salute. When I
heard about this, I went nuts. I
immediately asked Tyler if he want-
ed to do a duet with me. He said
yes, and we went though several
songs before we got to the one
we’re doing. I’m sure if you’ve been
reading my blog you know what
songs we considered and which one
we now are doing, but I need some-
thing to go here. XD So At first, we
were thinking “Together Again”
from Young Frankenstein, but we
couldn’t find the karaoke to that, so
we started looking for other duets.
Tyler came up with many, such as:
All for the Best, Godspell
Motel the tailor and his intended, Tzeitel, Tevye’s daughter.
Feed Me, Little Shop of Hor-
AUDITION SONG, AUDITION SONG, WHERE
Hakuna Matata, The Lion
FOR ART THOU AUDITION SONG?
The last few weeks, I’ve been really working on cranking out an audition song
But all of these songs paled in
for Fiddler on the Roof, but I’ve yet to find one that I am genuinely convinced that I want
comparison to the one we found.
to use. At first, I was thinking about “Under the Sea” from The Little Mermaid. Then I
“Pretty Women” from Sweeney
sang it for my friends at a holiday party I had, and they pretty much put the ickshnay on
Todd is a very intriguing song with
it. So I set out on the quest once again. Then I considered a solo part of “Together Again”
lots of thematic elements in it,
from Young Frankenstein, put that firmly in its place when I heard how I sounded.
including horror and happiness.
He’s coming over on the 25th to
Then I heard “Don’t Rain on My Parade” from Funny Girl. Yes. I tried to sing a
rehearse, and our audition is on the
song by Barbara Streisand. I showed it to Helen. She begged me not to do that to myself,
28th! I can’t wait.
and that there were a lot of songs I sound better singing. So once again, I began search-
In other news, my rehearsals for
Oh, What a Tangled Web are going
Then we got that assignment from Ms. Whitener, and I started listening to the
well (besides last Thursday—that
songs from Aladdin a lot. I love this music. So. Much. The song “Friend Like Me” has
was when my mom went to the
been one of my favorites since I was little, so naturally, I am considering it. Plus, I can
hospital). It looks like it’s going to
sing it. Also, any song sung by Aladdin himself is near perfect for me, as the guy who
be a good show. If we can all keep
straight faces throughout! Another
plays him nearly has the same range as me. The song “A Whole New World” is really
thing I’m looking forward to.
good, but only up until Jasmine comes in. I guess I could sing his part and stop there, but
there is also “One Jump Ahead”. That is a fast paced song, but I can do it—but “A Whole
New World” is more in the style of Fiddler, which is why I most likely won’t be doing
“Friend Like Me”. The only song that remotely resembles “Friend Like Me” in Fiddler is
“To Life”, and even then, that’s a stretch.
I’m really looking forward to my audition , but I’m also scared. What if I can’t
figure out a good audition song in time? Hopefully I’ll be alright. I’m also excited because
my friend Helen will be auditioning as well. I would be so happy if she got in! That would
QUOTE OF THE WEEK
Ok, guys! Here’s your chance to get your questions, comments, and ideas into the That’s
Me Ben Weekly Blog! If you guys have any thing you want to know, or anything you guys
want me to put here, leave a comment back on the blog! Do you guys like the new news-
wants to be
letter-type thing? Let me know!
I’m taking a big leap from my blog to this, so I want to know if you guys like it or not. If
you’ll actually read it? Thanks!
PICTURE OF THE WEEK
A dew-covered pine leaf in the Six-Mile Cypress Slough