Alive on the Inside
Over the years I’ve pursued many interests. I felt compelled to delve into many fields, many communities, and endeavors. But with the distillation of time, it was the enduring passions of art and acting that stuck, and those passions sustain me today.
For me, it has all come together at a time during which I found the vocabulary to be able to say I am an out, gender fluid person and very much myself after years of doubt, trying to determine what fit me and who I was.
I trained as an actor in my twenties at New York’s Circle in the Square, and had the good fortune to work, chiefly Off Broadway, for some years. But a crisis of confidence on the eve of my audition for The Graduate was enough to make me quit performing.
I went back to school, married, led a life and raised children. In 1978 a woodworking career turned into a pursuit as a visual artist, largely because of a series of dreams about my childhood, my grandfather and Coney Island. The Coney Island amusement beach had been a seminal childhood place for me, and the dreams drove me back to Coney Island, leaving me with a yearning to “save” the surreal landscape of my youth. That road eventually brought me to a fateful meeting with a similarly driven artist, Philomena Marano, my art partner of forty years.
Philomena and I heard the call of the Mermaids in Coney Island, and went to work both in the studio and out at the beach under the banner of The Coney Island Hysterical Society.
Over the past thirty years I’d acted in a few film projects for friends, but not until I was pressed into service in 2016 by writer/director Todd Gordon for his 2016 short film Pianoforte did I ever consider acting, I mean acting, again.
As a person in my seventies, working on Pianoforte was a true wake-up call. I really rediscovered the joy of the work, and I realized I hadn’t lost it.
It was all still there, Alive on the Inside.