Monday, July 30, 2012

Only Silver....

According to those "in the know", Olympians who receive the Silver Medal in competition are actually less happy about it than those who receive the Bronze Medal.

Apparently this is because they are disappointed to have gotten "so close" to the Gold. Those who win the Bronze Medal are happy because, well, at least they "medaled" and can put Olympic Medalist on their resumes....(and charge more for those well earned endorsements)!

Later on I suppose it sinks in that the Silver Medal is worth something.....about $28 an

Last Thanksgiving I ran the Turkey Trot 5k and yes I was happy "just to medal"!

Okay, admittedly they give one to everyone who finished and yes it is actually a "turkey medal". I will try to make future medals more impressive....

Saturday, July 28, 2012

Happy for happy hour!

I have discovered that a dose of Happy Hour can be as good as therapy.

Being with friends just to share a few laughs, some food, maybe a drink, or not. It doesn't have be in a restaurant or even after work to be a happy hour....

Some great times I've had with my favorite people have been spontaneous happy hours. Like having friends stop by, blending up some margaritas or if it's early in the day, omelettes and great conversation.

I've even had a phone chat with a friend turn into a happy hour. Some laughs, shared insights, and I hang up feeling good.

Recently after working the Billboard Awards some of my fellow actors and I dropped into a Mexican restaurant. This turned into a lunchtime happy hour! What spontaneous fun....I got to know great people much better in those two hours than I had in a couple of years of working with them. Why have we never done that before?

Watching "30 Rock", my husband and I laugh so much it's a "TV happy hour".

When I've had a bad day or week (or year), sometimes a happy hour feels like the last thing I want or can do, but it's usually just what I need.


Happy Hour photobomb
The Wendt Sisters

Thursday, July 26, 2012

"Brothers in Charms"....Baldwins and Francos

Where is your man on The "Baldwin" Meter?

Is he hot, charming and a bit metrosexual?......a Billy

Intelligent, witty and slightly Alec

Unpredictable, macho yet oddly exciting?........a Daniel

Former bad boy now reformed and religious?....a Stephen

Maybe he's a bit of both, like an Alec with a touch of a Stephen, or a Billy with a Daniel complex?....That's called a "Baldwin bonus"....double the trouble AND the fun!

If you're into younger guys, GOOD news! I'd like to introduce you to the super hot and talented Franco Brothers! James and Dave Franco are actors and Tom is a brooding artist.

The "Franco" Scale

Charming, sexy and a little complicated.....a James

Modest and funny, doesn't know he's hot......a Dave

A brooding artist with a shy smile......a Tom

(A special thanks to Mr. and Mrs. Franco for giving us, just in time, the next generation of "Baldwin".)

"The Handsome Foursome":

"The Franco Three":

(Oh, if you want even younger, like the Jonas Brothers, you're on the wrong blog....check back when they're all old enough to shave.)

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

The Artisan. An unexpected masterpiece...

What can you do with a little creativity? You can build something like "The Artisan". It's eclectic, fun, darkly beautiful and charmingly imperfect!

This hotel is uniquely artist themed. The walls have a bounty of prints displayed everywhere you look from various artists like Chagall, Da Vinci, Rembrandt, and Renoir, to name a few.

Yes, it's true, The Artisan was originally a generic chain hotel before being bought and infused with a little creativity that went a long way, if you ask me. Each room is designed for a different artist.....which means every room is not the same....imagine that. Nothing against the chain hotels, they have their place, but I'd rather stay here than another bland and beige "box", any day.

It's worth stopping in for drinks, dinner, or a pool day just to take in the art on display.

Soon "Mood" restaurant is bringing back a popular feature available in many cities known as "Dinner in the Dark". You are blindfolded and dine in the dark to enhance your sense of taste, smell and texture. I haven't tried it yet but am looking forward to when I do.

Since I did not get permission to use any of their paintings
in my story, I made my own using the lovely Karen Wendt as my model!

Thanks pretty hostess!

Get the goods ......

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Hey baby, what's your "keyword"?...

I have been reading a lot lately that "everything" now comes down to keywords. if I were broken down into keywords, which ones would define me

I'd better think this through because I know keywords are very "important". 

How many do I get? From what I've read it should be about three or four.
Here goes....





Wait....Do I define me or do other people's perceptions of me define me?
I wonder if I am supposed to ask other people what my keywords are. 
No, that would be a never ending quest.
If "everything" has come down to keywords we should at least all get to pick our own.

Monday, July 23, 2012

To be human...

Endless hope and optimism

Terrifying fear

Love that you'd give your life for

Regrets for things not said

Or worse, said

Moments that make your heart stop....with joy....or pain

"This time it's going to be different!"

But it's never going to be the same...

Guilt fades but is never erased

We all have to live with it

Whatever "it" is

This is not a decision

We just do...

what it takes to be human

Copyright 2012  Anna Wendt

Saturday, July 21, 2012

Santa Lucia

Isn't it a good thing we all have weddings, anniversaries, graduations and birthdays?

As daily life seems to become busier and more frantic, I wonder if we didn't have these milestone events would most of us ever take the time to get together? be in each other's space and talk and laugh face to face?

Just a little song my good friend and a lovely bride today, recorded from her living room one night.


This concludes my post tonight as I am wedding and wedding partied "out".....

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Cheerleader for L I F E !

I belong to a secret society that few know about...I am going to put it all out in the open now!

I am a "Cheerleader for Life".....!

There are many of us out know the type. We are the ones who are always bubbly, positive, friendly and nauseum.

Whenever I meet a new friend and she says...."I was a cheerleader", I always say, "So was I"! And we excitedly compare what sport, for how long, our uniforms. We're instantly friends.
However, when someone says "You were a cheerleader"? in that certain way and rolls their eyes I know I'm going to have to work harder to overcome that stereotype. Probably some bad apple cheerleader picked on them in high school and ruined the rep for the rest of us. (Once in awhile one sneaks in.)

I know many people think cheerleaders are self absorbed, divas, or "airheads" but I can tell you it's mostly not true! First, you have to be part of a squad, a team player. It takes a lot of time and practice to learn the cheers and dances, and in my case at my school you could not "party" or you were suspended. We also had to take a test on the sports we wanted to cheer for. I learned a lot about basketball, football, hockey, wrestling and volleyball that I carried with me. This helped me enjoy sports (and impress boyfriends), later on in life! (Thanks Mrs. Larson I appreciate that now.)

Of course acting modeling, singing, dancing and public speaking are in many ways just a form of cheer leading. Those of us "cheerleaders for life" know this and we smile through it because we, somehow, found a way to keep this gig going!

Wish I still had my uniform. Would be fun to wear it some days while at the gym, cheering people on the treadmill, at the mall, "You look great in that, buy it!".....on the beach, at the library or DMV....
Couldn't wait to get to 6th grade to be a cheerleader.
Too bad my mom was "so mean" she wouldn't let me wear make up until 7th grade...

Kelly, Anna, Sue, Tami, Taina

Looked like my parents ran a cheer leading farm....

Anna Wendt, Karen Wendt, PGA Tour Brand Ambassadors
i.e. PGA "cheerleaders" 1996
Nicole Pano and Anna Wendt
XM Satellite Radio "cheerleaders" 2007

Karen Wendt and Anna Wendt
Rehearsal Actors/Stand ins for Miss America Pageant
i.e. "cheerleaders" 2012

And on it goes..........:)

I have so much to say about cheer leading that it's a three part story. Next, look for
Cheer leading Through Time and Hollywood's Famous Former Cheerleaders.....

Sunday, July 15, 2012

"Field of Dreams"......SOLD

"Please know that you will always be welcome here"

.....Donnie and Becky Lansing

The farm, ballpark and movie site in Iowa, a popular tourist attraction since the 1989 movie was filmed there, has been sold. The deal will close in the fall.

However, the good news is that there is only one thing changing about this magical place. All Star Ballpark Heaven, is a 24 field "state of the art" facility for training, tournament play, and development of youth baseball programs, being built on adjacent farmland.

Field of Dreams, the movie, is based on the book, "Shoeless Joe", by W.P. Kinsella, about a fictional farmer inspired to build a baseball field in his backyard which initiates a journey of myth, fantasy, and self realization.

I've always liked that line from the film, "If you build it, he will come." However, there is another phrase that affects me more. When James Earl Jones as the character Terrance Mann says, "Go the distance". It applies to much more than this film.

"Go the distance". It is through the process of following through, that a dream is realized.

What does the "Field of Dreams" look like today?

Original preview trailer, "Field of Dreams"... via IMDB

Friday, July 13, 2012

My Dad, the Rock Star....

My appreciation and knowledge of music and lyrics I owe to my father.

Gordy Wendt 1962

By sharing your talents and interests with children, you never know what you are nurturing in their hearts......
He wore a leather jacket, drove a motorcycle and played guitar......all while providing for a family of seven.  Dad was, and still is, my family's version of "Elvis" and "The Fonz"...

Many nights after a full day at work, (as a welder), he'd plug in his Gibson Electric, sit on the bed in his room and play and sing.  Sometimes one or some of us would join him, cross legged on the floor, ears next to the speaker. Other times we'd just listen.  The only rule was never to interrupt a song.

Neil Diamond, Willie Nelson, Merle Haggard, Jon Fogerty......I learned about all of them through my father's musical interpretations. Little did he know someday I'd actually get to work with these same people, and because of him feel like I already knew them.

Due to a bad motorcycle accident he had to stop playing guitar.....but he still sings with a voice as smooth as butter!


Wednesday, July 11, 2012


Remember Arsenio Hall? 

Many say he has made a "comeback" as the winner of the most recent season of Celebrity Apprentice. 

Although if you look at his Wikipedia page you'll see that between the years of 1981 to current there wasn't even one year that he didn't work on a film or TV show. This is the case with many actors. They don't go away, they just aren't as prominent for a time. Often times they're writing scripts and making more money or as much money than they did as actors. This is especially true with comedians.
Those of you who remember Arsenio's "Woof Woof" shout he gave out during his show will find it amusing that it made it into so many films such as "Pretty Woman", "Aladdin", and "Passenger 57" in the scene where Wesley Snipes character is mistaken for Arsenio Hall. 

By far my favorite role of Arsenio's was his performance in "Coming to America" with Eddie Murphy.  A true comedy classic! The scenes in the Barber Shop...they never get old!

Arsenio was one of the judges for Miss USA last month, but I didn't have the chance to meet or work with him at dress rehearsal.

Arsenio Hall's new syndicated late-night talk show premieres in the 
Fall of 2013 on Tribune and CBS syndicated TV stations.


Tuesday, July 10, 2012


"SCORE", is an easily accessible nonprofit nationwide 
organization that helps professionals and businesses.

Of course this includes many of us in the entertainment business: bloggers, production companies, modeling agencies, scriptwriting services, acting schools, photographers, and more.

SCORE provides information and resources of which many are free of charge.

For example, there is a free online marketing webinar, on Thursday July 12, at 10 AM PT, and another on July 18, at 10 AM PT. See link below.

You can also access and view previous webinars on various subjects.

I plan to but have not yet joined SCORE, however I have already reaped many benefits that are available to nonmembers.

I recently attended the event, "Doing Business in Southern Nevada" which was coordinated by SCORE Las Vegas Chapter, and Raj Tumber, SCORE Business Mentor, Public Relations.

In this photo from the event my sister says I look like I'm doing a  "Court TV" commercial. Probably because it was held at the Clark County Commission Chamber. I learned a lot that day which I have been able to put to good use.


Below is an excerpt from the SCORE website....

SCORE is a nonprofit association dedicated to helping small businesses get off the ground, grow and achieve their goals through education and mentorship. We have been doing this for nearly fifty years.
Because our work is supported by the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA), and thanks to our network of 13,000+ volunteers, we are able to deliver our services at no charge or at very low cost.


Those of you with some time, knowledge and an interest in working with and networking with others may want to check into volunteering with SCORE, as I have. You may learn something, and let's be honest it shows initiative on your resume to be involved in professional organizations.  For the Life of Your Business

Thank you for posting my story on your national website....7-12-12

Monday, July 9, 2012

"I Got This".....Jennifer Hudson's story

I've struggled. I've been an unknown trying to make it. I've been overweight. I could easily live without the fame and the fortune---but the one thing I could never give up is how healthy I feel now that I have lost what was weighing me down."

- Jennifer Hudson

Her book, "I Got This", is truly an underdog success story.  Not only because she came out of nowhere to achieve Hollywood standing, but because she rose above tragedy to regain her physical and emotional strength.

For those who don't know her story, here's the short version:

Jennifer Who?

A singer from Chicago, performed at weddings, cruise ships and talent shows. In 2004 she was a finalist on American Idol.

In her FIRST movie role ever in 2006, she gave an amazing performance as "Effie" in Dream Girls. This won her 29 awards, the most significant was the Oscar for Best Supporting Actress, proving that talent lies with relative unknowns as much as the famous.

In 2008 suffered an unimaginable tragedy when her mother, brother and nephew were murdered by her sister's ex husband.

Currently, she has a little boy, a fiance' and has maintained a stratospheric career.

Her book is a great read, and inspiring. However, it is surprising in one way. She never directly discusses or gives any attention or details to the murder of her mother, nephew and brother. I don't know why but am guessing it's either because it is too painful, too private, or because she doesn't want to give any extra attention to a murder and the darkness surrounding it. Interesting and rare.

I have worked as a rehearsal actor on a couple of shows where Jennifer performed. To say her voice and emotion affect people is an understatement. Her rendition of "Believe" for Brooks and Dunn: The Last Rodeo, their final tribute, had the MGM Garden Arena fellow entertainers and crew mesmerized...these are Hollywood pros, used to seeing the best of the best. The chill that went through the room was palpable when she sang the first line.

Just a few months ago she closed the "Smith Center for the Performing Arts Opening Gala Concert" with "Bless This House". (See my post 3/30).....I was finishing up for the day as a stand in and my husband came to pick me up. I brought him in the theatre for a few minutes. He noticed everyone was just standing there, sort of stopped in their tracks, not doing anything. I told him, Jennifer Hudson is singing....she tends to have that effect on people.

Her manager and life long best friend, Walter, borrowed my cell phone earlier in the day to call her backstage since his battery died. And yes, I told him I'd erase her number....and did. What a friendly and unassuming guy he is...
I notice that Jennifer does not emit any energy while waiting to rehearse. She's so quiet and introverted I literally walk by her and feel nothing. Maybe it's because she is saving it all up for her performance, whether it be a rehearsal or not.  She just goes "inside herself".

Surprise! Jennifer has a guest starring role as Veronica Moore on one of my favorite shows, "Smash". Look for her in the 2013 season.    "I Got This"   Jennifer Hudson

Friday, July 6, 2012

No longer a "free agent"?

I think it's time for me jump in and get an agent again.

So, I am contacting one today. She is someone I have wanted to meet for quite some time.

More on this as it plays out....

It's been since I lived in NYC a few years ago that I've had a theatrical or commercial agent.  I've been working mostly through casting directors and production companies. For some reason I have always seemed to have pretty good luck with casting directors, producers and directors, so an agent hasn't been necessary.

What's the difference?

Casting Directors are hired by the production company to audition and hire the best actors for the specific roles.

Many feel that casting a project is an artistic skill, to which I agree!

Putting together a "cast", the casting director has to consider not just "how good" the actors are. They also they have to fit certain descriptions, AND be right for the role, and be reliable enough to hire. Someone who will show up every day and play the part at the same level. Some are one or two of these but not all three!

Also, sometimes the production insists on a "name" actor to attract investors to the film or show. This rules out a lot of people, ....(the "underdogs" like me).

In many cases casting directors are just "gate keepers" to the director. They let all of the good ones through and the director often has the final say.

Agents are called by a casting director or production company and asked to send, for example, "a dozen males, 6 ft tall, over the age of 30", to play the role of "police officer #3", in a television movie.

A casting director doesn't have time to find and contact a dozen actors. That's why the agent is so important. The casting company will contact the agent who will send to them the actors who they think could play the part, qualify physically, and are available.

It's a good system and has worked well for decades.

How does an actor or model get an agent?

This is not a "how to" article but I'm happy to share what I know....

If you're a "non union" actor or a model you may need to do an internet search in your area for an agent for acting or modeling. However, be careful. You want to find a legitimate one. Go to the site to check for complaints on any before signing, ESPECIALLY if you're asked to pay a fee. I'm not going to say you should NEVER pay a fee for an acting or modeling agent when you're just starting out. If you do, it should be for classes and photos, or something specific, not just a "fee" to register.  Just make sure to ask around, go online, ask others who have worked with them, check them out first. The entertainment industry is RIPE with scams. In 15 years in the business I have never fallen for any. Was close once or twice, but  took the time to check them out first, sparing my wallet and my time.

For information on various agents, if you're a union talent (or eligible), anywhere in the country you can contact SAG/AFTRA.  They will give you a list of union affiliated agencies. SAG/AFTRA has branches in cities all over the U.S. Also, I think Actors Equity provides the same service, (but not sure). In both cases, you may not even need to be a member, but it depends on the branch/city you're talking to.  It never hurts to ask!

Another great source for actors for related publications is Samuel French. You can buy books with lists and information on just about everything to do with the business of acting for as little as $10 online. They have been around since 1830!

"Actors tell the story of the human race".....-Shelly Winters

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

The Actors Fund....For all of us

I'm always surprised how few know about this....

The Actors Fund

A non-profit organization providing 
assistance and resources for actors and all entertainment professionals.

Did you know actors were once
considered "outcasts"?

- Below is an excerpt from The Actors Fund website 7-3-12

The Fund helps people in film, theater, television, music, opera, and dance. It assists performers as well as those who work behind the scenes. Its broad spectrum of programs include comprehensive social services, health services, supportive and affordable housing, employment and training services, free podcasts, even free shoes for actors, and much more.
During the late 1800’s, the United States was still recovering from the devastating effects of the Civil War. Although the theater business was booming, the theatrical profession suffered a tremendous setback when President Lincoln was assassinated by an actor, John Wilkes Booth. Prejudices against the profession existed prior to that time, but Lincoln’s death rekindled the old hatreds and added more fuel to the fire.
Because of their low standing, members of the profession were regularly denied charity from most institutions. The Actors Fund was founded on June 8, 1882, by Harrison Grey Fiske.  This newly created charity immediately began providing assistance to individuals and families.
 - The above is an excerpt from The Actors Fund website 7-3-12        ______________________________________________________________________