Saturday, January 5, 2008

Career transitioning by guest blogger, Rob Lorey

In an effort to expand the depth of the topics I cover and to provide readers with new perspectives, I have decided to ask a few of my most interesting friends who inspire and enlighten me to appear as guest bloggers. The first one is my friend, Rob Lorey. I met Rob while we were on the Beauty and the Beast tour. He is an exceedingly talented performer and generous man who has now turned his talent toward a new career that is taking him in an entirely new direction. My love and thanks to Rob for sharing his story on this blog.

"I have been asked by my friend, Christa, to discuss career transitioning-which is interesting considering her own history. I have looked to her as a model when questioning my motives or planning. She has always seemed to me a person of keen intelligence and interests, who will throw herself into a given course with 110 percent dedication, yet readily change course with complete determination and little concern for popular perception. There. That's my entry for the Christa Fan Club.

My own journey has been a bit lengthier- but very fruitful. I spent roughly twenty years in the entertainment industry- mostly stage work. This career took me all over. I've lived in several great cities, toured throughout the US and Canada, and spent time in Europe and Asia. By all accounts, I've been very lucky and reasonably successful.

But I find that a career in the Arts intensifies the perception that one has never quite "arrived". No matter what successes you attain, you're always looking to someone who has what you perceive as the better gig. It is very difficult to maintain a realistic sense of progress- and easy to become career obsessed. Add to that the very real dearth of work opportunities and the increasing talent pool you are competing with. It can be a bleak picture!

My own journey has allowed me the luxury of time for reflection. My last big tour gave me the opportunity to take stock and make some decisions about how I might want the rest of this ride to go. I will spare readers the nuts and bolts of this existential journey. Suffice it to say I decided that I needed to expand my capacity for work opportunities and life experiences. That's what this move feels like- an extension of all that has come before it.

Currently, I'm pursuing a masters in Social Welfare- which is whooping my ass (back to a full time program after 25 years....ouch!) But it is incredibly interesting and engaging. I continue to perform- though not to the extent I was. It's a necessary sacrifice for the big picture. I am not sure how I will choose to use all this once I have completed my degree. I know that whatever I do, I'll be utilizing all aspects of myself, and all the work and life experience I have accumulated.

What a gift to be so energized and......expectant at this juncture! Goes to show you: every day is an opportunity to reinvent, to do better, to experience more!"

The above photo can be found at

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