Where You Can Be Yourself, By Being Someone Else

When you walk down the street and see someone talking to themselves you probably think in your head “this person is crazy”, right? Well my whole life I’ve walked around thinking that even as a theater student, because lets be real we all are crazy! But I realized one day while sitting in an audition room waiting for my name to be called, people were talking to themselves, pacing, sitting, talking to a wall. I then realized that the people that we see talking to themselves are most likely Theatre students trying to memorize lines or their monologues. So next time you see someone talking to themselves don’t judge.

Photo Credits: Cassandra Cooper, picture of the Altria Theater

I am currently a VCU arts theatre performance major. I absolutely love the theater program and I decided to follow my dreams to become an actress. Theater is very competitive and not steady but you create friendships in theater. Friendships that last forever. Friendships that give you constructive criticism, but for your own good. You create relationships with people that broaden your career path. Music, art, theater its all beauty. All the world’s a stage. You may be scared to choose theater as a career path, I was too. Even the most talented people don’t study theater because its out of the normal. Its not a steady job, after one show is over you have to find another one. But if its something you love, you take the risk. Theatre is were you can be yourself by being someone else.

(Photo Credits: Mariah Batten, a picture of Preston Peters taken in Lincoln, Nebraska. Sound Credits: Mariah Batten, Preston Peters Monologue for his VCU audition “Fiddler on the Roof”)


You can be the doer, or you can be the watcher. While most watch, some do. Singing, acting, and dancing are passions for a lot of people. Some get to live their dreams, and some aren’t good enough. Anyone could work hard enough to get good enough but most give up. The ones who give up usually are watching. In the musical,”Fiddler on the Roof”, which is the monologue above, the poor old man works very hard every day but never gets enough money to be happy but he stays happy because his tradition is kept. After his family breaks traditions he was happier in the end because his family is happy. He was a hard worker and a doer and in the end he got what he wanted. So what do you want to be? Are you settling, or following your dreams? Are you a doer or a watcher?



Photo Credits: Jordan Goodman, Performance headshot for VCUarts

Elisabeth Mariah Batten is a student at Virginia Commonwealth University, where she double majors in performance Theatre and Elementary Education. She graduated from Lee-Davis high school where she participated in many extracurricular activities such as plays, musicals, VTA, ITS, ITS president, mascot, and many shows outside of school. Mariah enjoys performing in musicals and plays that include singing, dancing, and acting. The arts program appealed to Mariah because of its amazing opportunities and mass expansion of knowledge she could gain from it. Mariah has lived in Mechanicsville Virginia her whole life, so she is very familiar to the VCU area. Her favorite thing to do in Richmond is explore Belle Isle with her close friends and go swimming.

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