Yes, This Will Be On the Test

Writing, Reading, Laughing

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

U is for UCLA


Twenty-Six Days of Creative Inspiration


I am a Bruin. You might call me an Uber-Bruin. I earned a BA in theater arts and an MFA in theater design/technology from UCLA as well as serving on the design faculty of UCLA's Department of Theater for over a decade.

There was no better place for a creative soul to be nurtured than UCLA's Department of Theater. I entered as an actress and left as a lighting designer. Along the way I had two plays produced. Talent and artistic risk taking was always encouraged at UCLA.


It was not only my teachers/mentors that inspired me, but the amazing peers I was surrounded by. Ed Solomon and Chris Matheson who wrote Bill and Ted's Excellent Adventure were in my playwriting class. Ed went on to pen Men in Black. I was fortunate to work with Ed again on "It's Garry Shandling's Show. He was a writer and I was the assistant art director. I designed lighting and sound for shows that starred Tim Robbins. I could name drop for days, but I will spare you.The joke in my family is that everyone who I went to school with at UCLA is famous except for me. 

You couldn't turn around at UCLA without bumping into talent and inspiration.

If you have college bound kids in your life who crave a creative playground make sure they give UCLA a peek.

How did your college days inspire your future? Any fellow Bruins out there in Bloglandia?

Click on the Blogging From A to Z Challenge logo in the sidebar to access the links to all the superheroes participating in this blog hop.

19 comments:

  1. Yay, for such fabulous college days and experiences! I am a guidance counselor and always have one or two kids apply to Cali (from Monaco) each year. I actually visited UCLA when I was in LA for the SCBWI conference last year. My degree in Anthropology certainly influenced my years working in developing nations!

    ReplyDelete
  2. That's really cool. In college esp. you just never know who is going to be famous in later one. I love wondering about the people who went to highschool with Tom Cruise or Brad Pitt and what they were like back then - or if they were even considered good looking!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I guess it depends on when the braces came off.

      Delete
  3. I am a wannabe Bruin. I can remember visiting my aunt who lives in Bel Air, when I was sixteen. I had major artistic dreams. I just knew I was going out there to college and it was going to be fantastic! Then I went home and two years later met a guy who later became my husband. Those stinking guys:) I had plans, but life got in the way. I often wonder what would have happened if I would have gone to UCLA.
    Very cool to hear your name dropping:)Your famous to us bloggers!

    ReplyDelete
  4. I actually don't mind at all if you name drop. What a great life you've led.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. What a great life you're leading, I should've said.

      Delete
  5. UCLA is definitely one of the finest screenwriting schools around. How wonderful that you went there and are the uber alum now!

    ReplyDelete
  6. Leslie, that is awesome! I didn't major in theatre but I did become an actor. I love writing plays and sketches and performing. I'm also writing screenplays and making movies. I would love to hear your tales of college life at UCLA!

    ReplyDelete
  7. Leslie- How COOL that you went to college with the guys who wrote Bill and Ted's Excellent Adventure. I must have watched that movie a million times. I also like the name dropping- I think it is interesting. It is awesome that you worked on The Gary Shandling Show! Wow! You made me wish I went to UCLA. :)

    ~Jess

    ReplyDelete
  8. Sounds awesome! My college life was fine - nothing special. I found it more of a stepping stone to my real life :)

    ReplyDelete
  9. College was a great time for me, as I hope it'll be for my kids. Lots of growing up and learning. All good stuff!

    ReplyDelete
  10. What great experiences. I don't mind hearing names dropped. :)

    ReplyDelete
  11. Medical School is a great time for me right now! Well apart from the hard studies!

    What great experiences you had. Thansk for sharing!

    Riya

    ReplyDelete
  12. Go Bruins! We did have an amazing time didn't we? Funny how those theater genes go from generation to generation. Kelly is hoping to Minor in Theater at UCLA. She loves being a Baby Bruin and is having as much fun as we did. She's working with Hooligan Theater Group on campus and they just opened a show in the Freud. We gave them some lighting stuff to use so helped load in and strike. It was very strange to be back on the Playhouse stage after 25 years but so many great stories and memories....some of which include you.:-) Ran into Jeff which was fun. Ken swears the ColorTrans on the electrics were the ones he used. Too funny.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hey Erin! What at treat for you to pop up on the blog. Of course Ken - Ken Lennon - should be one of the names I dropped in the post with his spectacular lighting career at Disney. Yay for Kelly following in you and Ken's creative footsteps. Hugs all the way around. xo BTW - If it still turns on when you plug it in, it's still in the Freud playhouse.

      Delete
  13. Soon we'll be name dropping Leslie Rose!

    ReplyDelete
  14. Wow... you entered as an actress and left as a lighting designer! What an awesome opportunity!

    ReplyDelete
  15. That must have been amazing. So many famous people studied there (including Joyce DeWitt, aka Janet Wood!).

    And you'll be famous soon, for sure. As someone mentioned, you are already famous with us. :)

    I loved my college days. I studied literature in Germany (M.A.) and we had a lot of freedom structuring our studies. I loved the old buildings and the discussions in class.

    After university I spent a few misguided years searching for a "real" job before I realized I really just wanted to stay at home and make up stories (knew this in fifth grade already).
    So now have freelance work to pay bills and am writing. ;)

    ReplyDelete
  16. Ah, so this explains the inspiration for that wonderful post of using lighting in your writing that you shared a month or two ago!

    ReplyDelete