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Shining In The Spotlight: How A Broadway Actress Overcomes Doubt + Disappointment

Sarah Dacey Charles’ world has shifted in amazing ways, both professionally + personally since joining Spotlight: The Mindset of the Month Club. 

I went from booking a regional theatre job every 6 months to booking something every month
+ the internal shifts are almost too numerous to count.  I’m truly a happy person today —
way happier than a year ago, when I first joined Spotlight.”
-Sarah Dacey Charles 

I caught up with Sarah one year after joining Spotlight to hear how she’s become not only more courageous + resilient,  but how she’s booked several dream projects + is now shining in the spotlight.

What made you decide to join Spotlight?

I want to be part of a spiritual community of actors who were committed to their own growth, success and happiness AND who were all about creating community rather than competition.  I want to support other actors and be supported in this journey together.

Plus — I love the journal, which I do daily on my iPad on the subway.

Double plus — the monthly meditation is like a little gift package I get to open each month.

What are the main things that have shifted for you since joining?  

Charles_Sarah_5723_xret2I’m astonished to say this but I’m truly a happy person today– way happier than a year ago when I joined. I’m more resilient and better able to spring back from disappointments and more courageous and willing to put myself out there even when it feels scary.

I’m kinder to myself, and feel more hopeful about the future. I also now have an arsenal of tools to help me when I feel myself going down the rabbit hole of self-doubt.  

Don’t get me wrong– I’ve also had some great external shifts like booking a few dream jobs but it all starts from the inside. 

What had been keeping you stuck?  

The belief that I wasn’t succeeding because I was a “loser” or was aging out of the biz.  I was looking for my acting career to fill a hole in me because I didn’t feel enough.  I also was afraid to shine– whether it’s not wanting to outshine others or fear of exposing myself to criticism.

You’ve had an amazing year, tell us what has happened since joining last April?

So many changes. I am booking so much more consistently now.  A year ago, I was booking a nice regional theatre job every six months or so.  And boy those dry months were hard to slug through.

Now, I’ve been booking something every month.
So in the last year– here are my bookings in order of appearance:

  • Booked a print job for Barnes and NoblesTheCircusInWinter_SDC
  • Booked a reading with tony-nominated director Leigh Silverman of a new musical: “Clouds Are Pillows For The Moon”
  • Booked a featured lead in a new musical, “Circus in Winter” at Goodspeed (dream theatre) directed by Joe Calarco (dream director)
  • Booked a wonderful Industrial written like an indy film– well paid and fun!
  • Booked a featured co-star on Madam Secretary opposite Tea Leoni!
  • Booked a lab workshop of a new musical, “Table” by one of my most admired composers, David Shire at another dream theatre, The Long Wharf
  • Recorded on the cast album of “Table” under the Aftra contract.$$ 
  • Pending–The choreographer from the last show is interested in using me for a network TV gig he’s working on! I don’t know if it will happen but sure nice to be asked!
  • AND I was hired by a wonderful career coaching company based in LA, called Actor’s Salon to be a career coach here in NYC!

The internal shifts are almost too numerous to count.  But I’m getting really good at noticing and shifting the internal channel away from my inner gremlin who wants to beat me up… Constantly.

I sleep better.   I’m noticing a new willingness to eat better — because I want to support being a better me.

What has your biggest lesson been?

Self-care is not optional.  And by that, I mean my emotional internal landscape.  I am at choice and have control over one thing only– how I show up and respond, but really taking ownership over my BEING –no matter what, even with bullish directors or harried casting directors or when there are no auditions or jobs on the horizon, is a game changer.

The quote Sarah now lives by:
DreamsAreRenewableWhat do you like best about being in the group?

Hearing people’s sharing: whether it’s a cool quote or to share their discoveries, victories, vulnerabilities or challenges. 

What is your advice for aspiring actors?

Every good thing you do for your growth counts.  It all builds on itself. It’s not about booking that one job that will transform your life.  You change it by changing your inner landscape, and taking consistent action.   Appreciation mindset + positive communal support + consistently working at your edge leads to success.  Self-kindness and compassion are key!

What are four words that best describe you?

Generous, kind, truthful + brave.

What did you just finish and/or are working on now?

I just finished a four-week workshop of a new musical and now I have some open space to build momentum for the next big leap so…. I think my next step is to embrace networking.

Tell us which Actor Inspiration albums + audios are on “Sarah’s Favorites” playlist?

CPPIt Is Done: I Align With My Future Self
Success In The Audition Room
Creating Powerful Performances Album**
**Favorite tracks on this album include:
Creating Powerful Performances In A Musical
Creating Powerful Performances For TV
Working With Difficult People
One Minute Confidence Booster

Where can we find you online?

Check out sarahdaceycharles.com, on Twitter, IMDB, Actor Salon.  And with Tea Leoni in an episode of CBS’ Madam Secretary.

Screen shot 2015-04-11 at 11.27.02 PM

Sarah’s performance of Paula Cole’s “Me” moved me to tears. It could easily be the theme song for Spotlight.  Click here to watch.

Congratulations Sarah!  Thank you for your continued support of all things ActorInspiration + your amazing contribution to our Spotlight Club.

We cannot wait to see what is ahead for you!

Sarah’s parting words: “Just don’t give up trying to do what you really want to do.  Where there’s love and inspiration, I don’t think you can go wrong.”

To learn more about Spotlight, Click here.



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