Celeste Sexton, Photo: Katie Quinn
FOGGY AIR BRINGS YOU: CELESTE S.
Age: Mid-20s (as a performer, exact age will remain undisclosed. So mysterious!), Location: New York City, for just over two years.
FOGGY AIR’S KATIE QUINN: What brings you to New York from Ohio?
CELESTE S.: I’m here to pursue my dream of acting. Hoping to get paid for it! So far I haven’t made money acting…but I’d say that things are going well because if I weren’t here then I wouldn’t even be doing the small steps I’m doing.
KQ: What are the steps you’ve taken that make you most excited that you’re here pursuing your goal?
CS: The first show I was in was a production of Taming of the Shrew. Being cast in your first play in NYC is an unforgettable moment and it made me realize, “Hey, this isn’t as scary as you think!” It was a big confidence booster. Another key moment was when I joined the Complete Theater Company. Going somewhere every week to remind myself that I’m an artist has been so important! It’s helpful to be surrounded by other actors with similar struggles and to collaborate with them–it’s inspiring. Finally, I’m creating a web series with one of my roommates, Eva. It’s our lives in New York City, but highly exaggerated. In school I felt like I wasn’t good at writing because all I wrote was papers, and since I can’t spell well and I don’t always structure a sentence properly, I thought I couldn’t write. But seeing what some of my fellow theater company friends are doing, it gave me the courage to start writing this web series and it’s been great.
KQ: What’s your “gotta pay the bills” job?
CS: I’m a nanny. It’s got its perks. I look after two adorable, sweet children. They’re a great source of entertainment. They’re really young: one is 3 years old and one if 3 months old, so it’s really tiring, too. I have baby spit on myself every day…and I never thought I’d talk about poop so much!
KQ: What are the biggest downfalls of nannydom (aside from aforementioned poop)?
CS: I’m worried about getting stuck in my survival job. It’s so easy to get tired by the work and come home and just relax and watch TV–to not look for auditions, to not practice monologues.
KQ: How do you keep motivated?
CS: Well, it goes in waves. But what always snaps me out of it is when my actor friends remind me, “Hello, Celeste, you’re an actor!” Also, I get inspired (and jealous, let’s be honest) by certains TV shows, like Happy Endings, Downton Abbey and 30 Rock. And when I go to a great play, like Wit, which I recently saw. Seeing those things is what puts a fire under my butt.
KQ: What’s the best part of being in your mid-20s in New York City?
CS: The freedom! I don’t have a husband, kids, a car or mortgage. I have the freedom to search and find what interests me–which is easy to do in NYC! I’m always stimulated here.
KQ: What’s the worst part of being in your mid-20s in New York City?
CS: The freedom!! I get overwhelmed. There’s not a lot of consistency in my life–and I’m a person who likes consistency. I just feel like there are so many things I’m interested in: acting, style, decorating, singing, organizing. I’m trying to figure out how I can use these things best.
KQ: Do you see yourself leaving New York City?
CS: Not any time soon! I have great friends here, there’s public transportation and I can get any kind of food any time…that’s a big thing coming from a small town! There’s always something happening. I’m never bored.
Many thanks to Celeste, who (full disclosure) is one of my lovely roommates. To add to her last sentence, I’d like to end this post with this quote from comedian Louis C.K.:
“‘I’m bored’ is a useless thing to say. I mean, you live in a great, big vast world that you’ve seen none percent of. Even the inside of your own mind is endless; it goes on forever, inwardly, do you understand? The fact that you’re alive is amazing, so you don’t get to say ‘I’m bored.’”