I have been living in the bay area for 3 years. What a three years it's been.
It feels like every decision has led to this point. As I walked up the stairs to circus center today, to open the building on the first day of Clown Conservatory 2020 I thought about learning this place existed while looking for jobs in 2016, about how nervous it made me to even come into this place and how real the impostor syndrome was. Seeing Sara Toby Moore's the supers clown conservatory final performance in April that first year was such a delight and the first encounter with Clowns I had experienced since the Circus Freaks in Texas. Seeing that show reminded me how important the clowns I met had been to me and that they really were the best people in my life at that time. Doing this work has made me a more buoyant human being.
It is wild to me that I now have the job I actually dreamed about being able to get when I moved here. I tangibly remember the real fear of failure I had in even trying to move to San Francisco at all. So many people told me not to do it, or that it wouldn't work out, or that my relationship would fail, or that I would end up moving back to Dallas. I was so afraid of failure but I took the plunge anyway, there was a lot of crying. When I first got here I moved in with a couple I met on craigslist. Long story short I learned a lot of about the legal system and have a new BFF.
My first job here was as a tour guide in the china town/ downtown area, talking about the sunken ships under the Niantic building, the fortune cookie factory, and the history of the transamerica building. That short lived work was a crash course in the history of my new home. Next I interviewed with Costumes on Haight and worked there for their Halloween season and stayed on to cover if they needed extra hands. At SF Mercantile I learned so much about how businesses actual work and the processes that need to be in place to make it happen. My Manager there taught me so much and I am so grateful for all the opportunities to learn about business. in general Haight Street has been so good for me. I really appreciate all the business owners and/or managers who taught me something about being a leader in the workplace but also in a community.
Not even a year after I moved to SF one of my family members got really sick. it has been difficult to focus on living my own full life when I also want to be there for and with them.
Through another room mate I was connect with the wonderful folks at Get High on Mountains
there has been some amazing travel in the last few years. Each of these trips and places really deserves its own blog post/journal entry.
Making the decisions for myself to go to Clown Conservatory is potentially "The Best Decision I Have Made in my Adult Life." This also deserves a whole other long post.
Looking into the future from here feels good. I was recently awarded an immersive theater artist residency Through Underland with Epic Immersive in SF and I wrote, produced, and acted in (ouch), my first original theater production. I look forward to collaborating with them more on projects in the future, and boy do they have some fun stuff planned for winter! I want to extend a HUGE thank you to all the amazing people who came to see that pilot show. I'll be posting here and all over social media as soon as we have finished tinkering with the script and are ready to put on a full fledged version!
Two of my graduating classmates from ClownCon2019 and I have been working to put together our own show, I cannot wait to scream from the rooftops about this when it gets off the ground.
Last but not least, I am finding my way (largely through skills I learned in Clown) to lean into the fear of making things, and be willing to make mistakes or to not know how to do things right. I feel free to be creative again which is really lovely. I think I lost myself there for a while. It's good to be back.
Kenna M. Lindsay
P.S. There are so many people I want to thank for existing, and so many more things that could be said about my time here and the people I have met. It's been difficult to make time to write this post so hopefully I will continue to find time to write and share my thoughts with you. I have a goal of posting updates more!