A lot has happened since the last time I updated my blog!
A fellow Marilyn Monroe impersonator I met at the convention kindly traded backing tracks with me. I gave her a few she was missing, she gave me a few I didn't have yet. So, here is my complete repertoire so far (the new ones are in pink):
A Fine Romance
Act Like a Woman
After You Get What You Want
Anyone Can See I Love You
Bye Bye Baby
Diamonds Are A Girl's Best Friend
Do It Again
Every Baby Needs A Da-Da-Daddy
I Wanna Be Loved By You
I'm Through With Love
My Heart Belong To Daddy
Some Like It Hot
Two Little Girls From Little Rock
You'd Be Surprised
I added them all into a playlist and together they are 48 minutes! With some witty banter and audience participation, I could easily have a 60-90 minute show! I've mastered a few, I'm familiar with others, and some I need to study thoroughly before performing. The one she gave me to replace the one I already had turned out to be the same, so I plan to professionally record that one to my liking (full orchestra, no synthesizer). Ooh, so exciting to see all my songs together! ♥
Also, remember my advertisement in that program for the homeschoolers production of Alice Through The Looking Glass? I hadn't received any contacts from it until my coworker at my day job told me his friend had seen it! Not only that, but he still had the program and texted the picture of my ad to my coworker. How freaking awesome is that? My ad worked! Indirectly, and without actually ending up in a gig *so far* but how amazing is it that someone still remembered it and had the program months later?! Here's the pic:
So encouraging for me because it shows that I made a ripple! Now to repeat that on a grander scale and I will surely succeed in building my business! Speaking of which, I am now working again with the entertainment company I had split with. They texted me asking if I would be interested in a two-hour holiday party Meet & Greet, no singing, just photos and mingling for a nice chunk of change. So of course I said "Yes please!" And they gave me a bump in pay without me asking, so I feel like I'm going back with my head held high. Everybody's happy. Especially me, because I absolutely love being part of people's celebrations and special moments! Then they texted later that day asking if I could perform at a birthday party with 80 people and a sound system. And I said SURE! It feels SO good to be back!
I happened to be staying at a hotel the night I was scheduled to perform for the birthday party in Chandler, so it was great practice for when I'll be getting prepared on the road. I wish I had remembered two things (namely to trim my nose hairs and bring tweezers with me) which I will surely remember moving forward.
I must be doing something right because on the way down to leave for my gig, two frat boy types were chatting me up in the elevator. One asked if they could hire me, and his friend was like, "Dude, she's booked tonight," which was true because that very day the entertainment company called and asked if I could take a last-minute birthday telegram about 30 minutes away after the Chandler party! Two gigs in one night! Love when that happens. Hmm, that could have been an opportunity to plug my website and Facebook page. But they were young and flirty and I'm not sure they are my target market. I kind of froze and said "Yeah, I'm booked" but next time I should hand out a business card. Oh, that's another thing I forgot! Always have cards, Lucy!
When I arrived, the wife told me how excited she was that I was there and how proud she was of her husband, who was turning 70. It was swanky! They had a caterer and wait staff and everything. It was a glamorous themed party and everyone looked amazing. I was so lucky that the head of catering took photos and sent to me afterward!
Thank you, Robert from Robert's Catering! The food looked and smelled divine. ♥
The performance ended up being a bit of a train wreck but everyone loved it anyway! I was thrown off a bit because I walked the cake out to my Recipient, who was standing out with a bunch of people by the pool. Someone took the cake and handed me the microphone, and in the other hand I was holding the card I would read after the songs. Since both hands were occupied I had to do a lot with my eyes and shoulders and facial expressions and while it wasn't how I normally perform, I could tell my Recipient loved every moment.
I had requested to talk for a bit before I started singing, but the DJ started my song without me cuing for it, so I missed the first four lines. After I decided to just go with it, I was fine until the last verse, when all the words just left my head. I think it's partially because the recipient was standing so close to me. I said, "Oh, dear..." which made the Recipient laugh. You could tell he thought I was adorable. What's a girl to do?? I just waited until I recognized where I was and I could jump back in and finish the song. I remembered all the words for my second song, but still had somewhat awkward movements because of the card and microphone. In hindsight, next time I'll just put the card down so I've got that arm free.
Apparently I left a third song on my jump drive that I wasn't expecting, so when it started, I didn't sing. I didn't know how to end this. They invited me to stay, but of course, I had to leave because I had a second gig right after. I bantered with them a bit and then on my way out five groups stopped me to take photos with them! It felt amazing, especially since on my hiatus I've had kind of an intense love affair with sugar and I've gotten, um, a bit more jiggly. But I told myself, walk with confidence! Love this body! And I got the feeling that everyone else loved it too. There was so much love in the air! I wish I had stayed just a bit longer, because on my way out I heard there was going to be a champagne toast. Champagne is Marilyn's thing!! Next time I will feel it out better and take advantage of that opportunity.
It was only way later that evening when I realized to my horror that I never even sang Happy Birthday at the first performance! (It would have been perfect at the champagne toast!)
In my defense, there were 80 people there and not one said, "Isn't she supposed to sing Happy Birthday...?" But gosh, I felt awful about it. I texted the wife, and I offered to come back the next day for a belated performance at no charge, but she said they were headed out of town and that I was wonderful and there was no need to perform again. I do wish I could have done my songs again because this time there would be no microphone, no card in my hand, everything would go right. I texted her an invitation to use me again any time (for free) and that it could go toward someone else if she wanted. I do hope she calls.
I'm so pleased to say that I used the opportunity of getting new photos to update my social media. So grateful that I got the photos and permission to post! I'm also pleased to report that despite zero effort on my part, my Facebook page is getting Likes from strangers nearly every day. I have no idea how they are finding me! But I like it. I'm at nearly 200 Likes!!!
I had a window of time in which I could arrive to the second gig. Once I got there, a lady met me in the parking lot and led me to a private room at a nice restaurant on Camelback. She was so kind when she saw me and she was so grateful I could fit their party in on such short notice. When I walked in, everyone was captivated by me! The Recipient is the president of the company, so of course that's always fun. This time I nailed Happy Birthday! There was a lot of chatter at first so I got real close and said in a sultry way, "For this, I'll need your complete attention."
Once all eyes were on me and the room was silent, I began. It's such a short song that I need to command the room when I'm performing it. It went great, and as we were posing for photos afterward, I kissed him on the cheek. It was a hit! The lady led me back to the parking lot and she was going on and on about how much she loved that I was doing this, how perfect it was, and that she would use me again. I practically floated back to the hotel I was so giddy with how swell both performances went!
I almost had a gig for this Saturday too, but it turned out that the people setting it up realized they had hired me last year to perform for someone who would be in the crowd, so while they raved about me, they decided to go in a different direction. After I heard that, I was bummed because I was so looking forward to performing again, so I got up the gumption to make a post about me being available for a singing telegram for someone in the Phoenix metropolitan area. Posts like this need time to circulate on social media to be effective but what it did accomplish was bringing me one baby step closer to feeling comfortable promoting myself. YAY ME!
It feels awesome to be feeding my dream of becoming the top Marilyn Monroe impersonator in the world again. Now my next steps are to get back on my nutrition and fitness plan so I can feel super confident in how my body matches up to Marilyn's and to learn all my songs, develop some shows, and start promoting myself in a bigger way. Easy, right?
I'm so happy and excited! <3