30 April, 2017

I've Been: Winter 2017

- Participating so meaningfully in my constitutional right to protest. I've joined marches with and for women, science, the arts, alongside my friends and colleagues at the ACLU, Planned Parenthood and Actor’s Equity.

- Ringing the gong!(A tradition at my acting agency where you ring a giant gong when you "book" a job!)

- Singing with my "DooDoo" and little sissy Samantha Massell at 54 Below (living out our BEST DUET LIFE GOALS!)

- Doing a beautiful reading of a new musical

- Visiting my hometown! Yay Detroit, Michigan!
     - Returning to the legendary Greek Islands
     - Catching up with old dear friends
     - Driving!
     - Buying a REAL winter coat
     - Loving the Michigan cold
     - Waiting outside in the freezing February Detroit cold to see my first gathering of The Moth downtown!
     - Celebrating my Mom’s birthday!

This. CAST!
- “Wintero-verting”

    - Costume HEAVEN
    - Loving the beauty and history of Princeton
    - Making some great new theatre pals
    - Daily yoga
    - Loving being a part of the McCarter family

     - personal and energetic boundaries
     - About being an 'INFJ'
     - Being an *Empath*
     - Making some serious inner peace
     - Working 2016 “out”
     - Learning allllll about psychic stress
The Countess, courtesy of William Ivey Long
     - Letting go

- Cooking!

- Doing a top secret photo-shoot for a major theatre platform (news coming soon!) with super fancy people on a dream come true kind of day. (Pssst - keep your eyes peeled on the Time Warner Center for giant crazy images of yours truly)

- Making peace with solitude

- Rumbling with health again

- Resting and Healing

- Learning even more about health (which is so much ore than the mere absence of disease)

- a true and complete 5-hour Hassidic seder on Passover at the wonderful internet sensation, Rabbi Mordecai Lightstone’s in Crown Heights. It was an honor to be at his table with his wife and four sons, and the collection of people from all across the internet he has welcomed into his circle and literal home.

- Deep (and I mean DEEP) cleaning

'After Anatevka' at Symphony Space
- 'Introverting'

-  Enjoying possibly the most overwhelming night of my entire life at Symphony Space. In an evening that felt not at all unlike my freakin' Bat Mitzvah, my close friends and colleagues came together to bring After Anatevka to musical life, in a manner I have no words to express.

- Singing with Doc!

- Loving on this: Good Earth Sweet and Spicy tea. (Holy moly Batman...hot. iced. Get it!)


- Submitting my manuscript!
- Completing the editorial process on my first novel
- The book cover victory
- Proofreading coincidence
- Seeing my novel as a novel for the very first time

- The Yiddish Policeman's Union by Michael Chabon
- You are a Badass at Making Money by Jen Sincero
- Don Quixote by Miguel Cervantes
- Theatre of the Oppressed by Augusto Boal
- The Handmaid’s Tale by Margaret Atwood (read beautifully on Audible.com by Claire Danes, prepping for the Hulu series!)

- Hamilton
- The Humans 

- Yours Unfaithfully at The Mint
- Picnic and Come Back Little Sheba in rep, at the Transport Group
- Significant Other
- San Francisco Symphony at Carnegie Hall (with Lilly!)

Symphony Space: pure joy.

29 April, 2017

'I Am the People, the Mob' by Carl Sandburg

I am the people—the mob—the crowd—the mass.

Do you know that all the great work of the world is done through me?
I am the workingman, the inventor, the maker of the world’s food and clothes.
I am the audience that witnesses history.
The Napoleons come from me and the Lincolns.
They die. And then I send forth more Napoleons and Lincolns.

I am the seed ground. I am a prairie that will stand for much plowing. Terrible storms pass over me. I forget. The best of me is sucked out and wasted. I forget. Everything but Death comes to me and makes me work and give up what I have. And I forget.

Sometimes I growl, shake myself and spatter a few red drops for history to remember. Then—I forget.

When I, the People, learn to remember, when I, the People, use the lessons of yesterday and no longer forget who robbed me last year, who played me for a fool—then there will be no speaker in all the world say the name: “The People,” with any fleck of a sneer in his voice or any far-off smile of derision.

The mob—the crowd—the mass—will arrive then.

13 April, 2017


I met up with Fiddler Fake Dad Danny Burstein (and for a hot second, Fiddler Fake Mom Jessica Hecht!) today, and we forgot to take a selfie, so he drew this:

and i drew this:

We're a really special fake family.

03 April, 2017

"My Perchik" from After Anatevka in Concert

Santino and Jessica Fontana
Song by Ben Toth and Alexandra Silber

Performed by Santino Fontana and Jessica Fontana, based on Alexandra Silber's novel "AFTER ANATEVKA"

From AFTER ANATEVKA : IN CONCERT at Symphony Space, New York City, 2017

Chapter 3: Hodel’s Longing

    Sat low, the daughters of the dairyman crouched beneath the cows and pulled the milk from their udders, as they had every day since the age when they were first able. It was more regimen than routine. The mechanical sound of each rhythmic tug and the subsequent tinny splash accompanied by the incessant groans from the beasts themselves was the music of home— its dull cadences almost soothing.
    But the sound was accompanied by a stillness — a feeling of unbearable emptiness that had been growing there for as long as she could recall. It was a longing as insidious as the odor from the stables: oftentimes unnoticeable, but a particular turn of the breeze, a sweltering afternoon, or in returning from inhaling the clean air of the river, and the feeling would grab a hold of her consciousness before she was permitted to continue on.
    Her eyes were intent on the milk rising in the pail, when the repetitive music of the work came crashing to a halt. She suddenly felt void of more than just her energy; it was a collapsing of life purpose, as if the oil had run out, extinguishing her flame.
    “What is it Hodelleh?” Hodel did not even notice that Chava’s concerned hand was upon her shoulder.
    “Nothing…” Hodel dismissed the feeling, brushing it away, “Nothing at all.”
    But of course it was something—and she wanted it gone. To feel once more, even for the briefest of moments, the fellowship of her community, her faith, and above all her affinity with Chava and the rest of her family. She longed to grow— inward, outward, taller still. She longed to burst through the barn doors and run toward any kind of rescue, across vast distances, through the mists of the morning, until the collapse of her body matched that of her spirit.  All of a sudden she was quite nauseous with it. Hodel shook herself, threw back her head, and smiled with reassurance at her sister before returning to the udders with a forced resolve.
    That was the summer she turned sixteen—the summer before she met Perchik.


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