“Life without risk…”

“…is not worth living.” – Steven Anderson, Actorswork.

Steven Anderson, one of the most inspirational acting teachers I have worked with, reminded his students of this truth this past weekend during an intensive here in Seattle.

I remember my first audition for a play – a musical no less – at Seattle University in 1998. I can still see myself peeking in to the room and watching all of the “actors” auditioning. I was petrified. I had to sing. And read from the script, I think. I was called back, and then, a few days later, I remember returning to “the room” to see who had made the cast list which was taped to the door.

David S. Hogan as the Street Singer in The Threepenny Opera.

That was the first play I ever performed in. It was The Three Penny Opera.

I got to play the Street Singer and sing Mack the Knife. What a great first show and first part (thank you Ki Gottberg).

That first step into the world of acting and the pursuit of the Artist’s Path has been risky. Risky, frightening, heartbreaking, hopeful, thrilling, overwhelming, abysmal, depressing, changing, and more. Without risk, no “successes” would have been possible. And with risk, I have been able to work with amazing people on amazing projects, earn a bit of a living, and touch people’s lives. And, through risk, while navigating the artistic path, I also met my wife.

Since graduation in 2000, I have had the great fortune of working on many plays (close to 40), with many people, on many stages, and in many capacities (stage hand, director, actor). I have trained with amazing teachers: Tom Todoroff, Nike Imoru, Dennis Krausnik, Michael Place, John Jacobsen, and Steven Anderson to name a few.

I am a member of Actors’ Equity Association and SAG-AFTRA.

None of this would have been possible without risk.

In 2006, in order to support my acting habit, I started a dog services business. Which would not have been possible without risk.

In late 2010, I signed with an agent. In 2011, I shot a pilot TV show, an indie feature, and an indie short. The feature just screened and the short made it into the Seattle International Film Festival. On April 20, 2012, I made an appearance on the network television show Grimm.

David S. Hogan as Enzo in The Art of Racing in the Rain.

Also on April 20, 2012, I opened the most critically acclaimed production of my stage acting career. I played a dog. I spent 10 weeks working on my hands and knees, and, perhaps, looking like a complete fool. Risky.

“Life without risk is not worth living.”

7 thoughts on ““Life without risk…”

  1. Wow, that takes some serious cajones. My hat is off to you, sir.

    I love that quote. It totally falls in line with my philosophy of life. It reminds me of this quote:

    “Whatever you can do or dream you can, begin it. Boldness has genius, power and magic in it.” Goethe

  2. Great post. I would comment that I prefer to call acting my “avocation” vs. “habit” (many folks I know are working at turning their acting from an avocation to a vocation)…
    “But yield who will to their separation,
    My object in living is to unite
    My avocation and my vocation
    As my two eyes make one in sight.
    Only where love and need are one,
    And the work is play for mortal stakes,
    Is the deed ever really done
    For heaven and the future´s sakes”.
    —Robert Frost, Two Tramps in Mud Time, st. 9

  3. Pingback: Post 100: Forging ahead into 2013 | Actor Craft by David S. Hogan

  4. Pingback: Happy New Year! 2013! |

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