On Thursday, Jan. 9, trans actor, photographer and musician Rachael Crowl delivered a talk in the Wriston Auditorium titled “Queer Success – Strategies for Survival.” Crowl previously worked in New York City playing the lead role in several off-Broadway productions and at Lawrence as the Director of Visual Media. Since, she has worked as the lead in a film that premiered at the Los Angeles Film Festival in 2017, and more recently just finished two years with the Oregon Shakespeare Festival.
She shared her inspirational life story of becoming a successful actor, from starting out on a college tech crew to joining a renowned theater company and landing major roles in movies. Throughout the story, she emphasized certain strategies that helped her along the way.
Among them, she suggested that everyone should, “Be on the lookout for people who have your back,” and to support those people in return. Not in a quid pro quo way, she noted, but in a genuine friendly way.
She prompted listeners to actively engage with life and be willing to take risks because if they simply coast along, they might miss golden opportunities. She told the story of how she got one of her favorite roles in a play by cold calling the theater and asking for an audition — an unusual strategy that paid off.
Other bits of advice included Crowl prompting listeners to be nice — not “mid-western nice” but genuinely nice — to one another, to cut people slack and to listen to others.
She noted that while much of her advice might come off as too obvious to warrant her saying, these “simple” habits can still be hard to practice in every circumstance and it is important not to lose sight of them.