Ever since I was little, I’ve always been interested in anything related to performance. From the day I was cast as a spoon in the production of “Beauty and the Beast” at age 7, I knew I wanted to be an actor. I have been involved in many school productions and taken on roles beyond the realm of cutlery – and with each experience came new challenges and learning opportunities. The theater was my home, but as I approached the end of high school, I had to make a choice. Would I pursue my passion for performance, or would I choose a more “practical” path? When I discovered that I could not only study my favorite subject, but also be surrounded by a community of students and professors who supported me, I had to take the plunge. I chose to be a Spartan and never looked back.
My experience at Michigan State University has been nothing but positive. Although I entered first grade during the first year of the pandemic, I had many opportunities that allowed me to grow. I joined the BFA’s theater department, and in my two years as a Spartan, I was involved in two major stage productions as well as numerous student and local films. MSU has given me so many opportunities that have led me to find my community and myself.
During the important free time I had in 2020, I started writing and recording music. I collaborated with my brother-in-law, an MSU alum who is incredibly talented on guitar, and wrote and released several songs. We started a band called Game Under, which was the start of my love for music and audio production. For my entire freshman year, when I wasn’t attending Zoom rehearsals or clicking through D2L modules, I was constantly creating, writing, and producing. The support I have received from my teachers and peers has been so touching and has only made me feel more confident. I had made the right decision to become a Spartan.
The theater department gives students the opportunity to understand exactly what we want to do and allows us to experience all aspects of theater. I would not have discovered my love for voice and film without the opportunities that presented themselves at MSU and the encouragement of my teachers, especially Deric McNish. He is an extremely talented teacher and vocal coach who has been one of the most influential people I have met at MSU.
Thanks to Deric McNish, I had the amazing opportunity to voice over MSU’s Welcome Back video this fall. In our voice acting class last semester, I learned a lot about how I can use my voice to make an impact. I got really interested in dubbing and audio production, especially after I had the chance to work on this voice-over project with Anthony Siciliano and Nick Schrader. Being part of the MSU Welcome Back video was a wonderful experience that taught me so much about the professional world of voice over work and made me even more excited for more opportunities like this in the future.
I’m used to being behind a microphone, as I am when recording music, however, being in a professional studio was a completely different experience. In the hour I spent recording and re-recording each phrase, I learned a lot about sound production and the impact a piece can have on the overall sound. Working with Anthony and Nick was a great experience that taught me a lot.
There are opportunities every day, but with the help of MSU faculty, I now know where to look for them and how to get started.