In our first ever "College Week," The Ensemblist is celebrating the myriad of ways aspiring theatre artists receive an education in the arts. Today, we hear from Daxton Bloomquist (The Book of Mormon) about his experience at Wichita State University.
Self-motivation, self-love and a good attitude. All lessons I learned and have stuck with me during my four years of college.
It’s been about seven years since I have graduated with my BFA from Wichita State University and still use a lot of my training in my professional career. Being a high school athlete, I had never taken a dance class, had studied little voice and never took any form of acting class. The only thing I knew and was sure about is that I wanted to go to New York City and work as a Broadway actor. Funny right?
I had my work cut out for me, I knew I had a lot to learn before even thinking about my move to the city, but I was determined. I had motivating teachers who allowed me to make mistakes, make risks, and push me past limits I did not know I had. However, the work and determination to create and be the best you can be does not end in the classroom. I think it is important to stay self motivated. When you get to NYC, you learn very quickly that no one will tell you what to do or when to do it. You are on your own, and you get to be your own boss. You decide what classes you take, what auditions you go to and acting teachers to study with. I learned in college that my self-motivation was going to be key to my success. I quickly learned I had to love what I was doing, because when I was exhausted and frustrated I had to continue to push myself to getting better. No one else was going to push me harder than I could push myself. It’s a fact, you are in charge of your self-motivation, I luckily learned this very soon in college, and continue to push myself through the roller coaster of my life and career.
Staying self-motivated is great, but it is also very important to have to have a good attitude and treat people with respect. I believe an actor's attitude can make or break a career. Everything will not always go your way, but to have a supporting, positive attitude will make you a pleasant person to be around and keep your soul happy! Sometimes it can be difficult, but learning to be a great team player sooner than later will always be helpful.
And the most important thing I continue to work on is self-love. This business can be amazing and exciting, but also tough and confusing. Don’t be too hard on yourself, love the process. This is my constant challenge, but I want to continue to love me for me. I want to trust my instincts and to know I am in the right place at the right time! Trust, Trust, Trust! It is so much easier to say to yourself than to practice it, but I am most happy and most caring when I am trusting the process of life!
Overall, I am in charge of my career, I am charge of my actions and I am in control of how I represent myself! I had awesome educators in school and was able to cultivate my skills and confidence to be a successful Broadway actor, and it was my determination and the love for art and creating that has allowed to keep moving forward in my career! We are responsible for ourselves and actions, and that's the scary and exciting part of being an actor and a human being! But I wouldn’t change any of it!
Listen to our episodes on college theatre programs here.