Season 10 Blogathon: Jonathan Gradilla

It’s become a tradition at Brelby to spend the month of November reflecting on our artform and how it impacts us through our annual Blogathon. This year, in honor of our 10th Season, our Blogathon participants will be sharing lists of 10 things that have impacted them, whether they be lessons or memories…or are looking ahead towards future goals. 

Today’s blogger, Jonathan Gradilla, is known around Brelby for his positive energy and kind spirit. He’s tried his hand at performing, stage managing and this season…designing. 

Enjoy below as Jon shares with us 10 Artistic Goals he has for the future.


Hello internet readers! Welcome to my blog post on the Brelby Theatre website. For those of you who do not know me, I am Jonathan Gradilla, or Jon for short. You may have seen me in a couple of shows at the theatre, or perhaps not! Either way, I want to thank you for checking out my words. 

Brelby Theatre has become a safe space for anyone to try new and creative ideas. Without the support and encouragement from this group of believers, I can’t be certain I would have some of these goals I will be sharing today.

About two years ago, I became involved with the theatre and their annual Christmas show, debuting myself to community theatre for the very first time. On November 30th, life will come full circle once again as I star along side my talented friends in ’12 Days of Christmas’. Goal number one has to be putting all I’ve got into this show. For the first time ever, I will be performing and designing for the same show. I have high hopes that we will knock it out of the park, so I encourage all to come check it out! Also it’s FREE!! How could it get any better?!

As I have mentioned above, I will be working on designing for ’12 Days’ as props master. This will be my second attempt in this field, and I plan to use all that I’ve learned from previous prop design. Goal number two is to create some crazy realistic and genuine props for this show. One scene has a Thanksgiving dinner with a turkey and all! Definitely terrified, but excited all the same! Please come see this turkey star in ’12 Days’! Let me know what we should name him.

With Brelby Theatre being this safe haven, i have been given the opportunity to write my first full length film for a Halloween Horror Midnight Screening! Never in a million years would I have thought this idea to be possible, and yet, it’s been announced to the public and it is happening! I have always written spooky stories and horror inspired scripts, hoping one day to actually make a terrifying movie. Classic slasher flicks have always held a special place in my heart, and the one key component in these films that i truly appreciate is the good old chase scene. My goal number three is to create a suspenseful, terrifying, exhilarating chase scene for my horror film The Grasp. I’m not too sure how it will end up, but there are some ideas flowing in my mind. Plus, I can’t give out any spoilers!

If you have ever written anything that needed some sort of presentation, you may know how nerve-racking it can be on yourself. What if it’s not scary? What if it doesn’t make sense? What if people hate it? These are all reasonable questions in the process, because i believe they can help a person to strive for their absolute best. With that in mind, my goal number four is to finish my script for The Grasp. Obviously I will at some point need a final draft, but I’m striving for greatness. I want to be proud of this project. At this stage in the process I can say that I’m proud, but when its fully complete I want to be walking on air! Great things can happen when you put the time and energy into them, so if you see me slacking you best put me back on track! I’ll thank you in the long run.

Along with The Grasp premiering Fall 2019, Brelby Theatre is also showing Evil Dead the Musical! I cannot tell you all enough how much I love spooky films! I love them to death. The amount of fun this show seems is immeasurable. Singing, dancing, deadites, Evil Dead the Musical will be one spooky Halloween adventure. My goal number five is to prepare myself well enough to be cast in this show. It would be another full circle, perhaps in the other circle. Double sided circle anyone?

Learning how to build and find appropriate props this year has been difficult but fun. I now have such a great appreciation for the designers of any and every show. That wish is hard! Next year, I have signed up for lighting designs and let me tell you I am terrified. My goal number six is to learn how to use a lighting program, and to light a scene to bring that perfect atmosphere. Lighting can truly make or break a scene. Lighting has its own presence, often becoming a character in its own right. In this case, I would love to learn and create my best lighting.

For the last year and a half, I have drastically changed my diet from the typical omnivore lifestyle, to veganism, and now to vegetarianism. This was choice i decided for myself when I began to realize how crummy I felt after eating certain types of food. I chose to eliminate that which made me feel ill, and it changed my life honestly. I’ve noticed myself becoming more positive, energetic, and understanding. It gave me this appreciation for my body that I never knew i needed. More recently I became a member of a local gym, hoping to get fit in body, mind, and spirit. My goal number seven is to continue my progress to reach my ideal fitness for myself. You may be catching on, but I am striving for my truest and greatest version of my self, Jon.

Goals number eight and nine fall in similar realms with each other. If you know me at all IRL, this will be a fun one to read. These I want to set for myself are to get myself a new means of transportation and a place of my own. I’m not a big fancy or extravagant fellow, meaning I am quite content with simple. Achieving these goals will definitely put me in a peace of mind, knowing I have reliability in my spaces. Yes I am well aware the Jeep has got to go! 😉

At this moment I would like to thank you for reading this far and going along this goal journey with me. I appreciate those who have read any of my writing, especially a blog post. The unfiltered look into an artist brain is truly mesmerizing. So many thoughts and ideas floating in everybody’s heads. It’s incredible. My tenth and final goal I would like to share with you all is to continue and nurture my itch for filmmaking. As a young boy I have always been interested in making films. Sitting in that theater with all cast, crew, and patrons; awaiting the art about to be displayed for all the world to see. I won’t say i lost this passion, but it absolutely took a backseat as I got more involved in other areas. I cannot wait to see what this upcoming year has to offer, and all the opportunities i choose to take! Hey Future Jon, you better not let any slip pass you! 

Thank you once again reader. I love you and hope you have a blessed day, week, year, life.

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *