My Brelby Moment: Jon Gradilla

It’s that time of year again!! That time when we give the blog over to our immensely talented artists and let them share their thoughts about art, life and more. The November Blogathon has become a Brelby tradition here at the Brelby Buzz, and this year we’re wrapping up Season Nine with our favorite Brelby Moments. For the next 30 days, our artists will discuss their favorite Brelby Moments from Season Nine and how that has impacted them and the way they approach their art.

Today’s entry is from Jon Gradilla, a member of Brelby’s resident improv team, Results May Vary, and has been on stage and backstage this season at Brelby.

My Brelby Moment

Jon Gradilla

As Season 9 comes to an end in the near future, thinking back to all the opportunities I had with working with the wonderful Brelby community can only be summarized to the best of my ability. This space has been an incredibly open-minded and loving environment, always pushing their artists to grow and become fully realized.

Going back to the beginning, some of my fondest memories come from Brelby’s production of Peter and the Starcatcher. I had the opportunity to play Ted, alongside many other talented artists who could impress anyone within a 10-mile radius. Working with this specific cast and crew is one of my favorite experiences because it allowed me to encounter the many different approaches one may take when preparing for a role. During this process I was also encouraged to trust my gut and to take the necessary risks when it comes to a strong performance.

Another great moment I always think back to are the crazy fun times I had during John Perovich’s unexpected. Coming into this project later in the season, I got to experience the creation and birth of a character and script from the depths of someone’s psyche. Original works have become a favorite of mine because it allows me to create a better understanding of the playwright and how he or she thinks in their everyday life. Finding those small hints of their personality hidden in the text allows me to truly find who and how a character is seen by others.

It’s great when a cast goes well together during the process of a show, but it’s extraordinary when you meet some great people who you plan on keeping in your life for a very long time. During the making of these two shows, and others not mentioned, I have come to appreciate how much the arts bring people together. Whether it being the love of the craft, or the shows itself, I have never been more grateful for the connections I have made throughout this last season at Brelby. Brelby is a hidden gem in the Theatre community, bringing together families from all types of backgrounds and statuses. For this very reason, it is safe to say Brelby Theatre is a home. A home for arts. A home for growth. A home for expression. A home I can call my own.

We’re so glad to have you as part of our family Jon! The November Blogathon continues tomorrow with more heartwarming Brelby Moments.

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