Paying My Dues, From Six Flags to an Amish Musical

Before I decided to be purely a musician, I did other performing things that actually paid me money! Although there was money involved, the jobs were not glamorous. It’s fun to think back on all the crazy things I’ve done while being a performer. Here’s a little glimpse!

I spent a summer performing at Six Flags Over Georgia, where we were basically doing aerobics in 100 degree weather while singing every day. It was probably the sweatiest job I’ve ever had. I was in 2 shows, a 50′s Show and a Beach Show, and we performed on the hour, 8 hours a day. I felt like I was paying my dues with this job

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At one point in my life, I lived in North Dakota for 6 months performing in an outdoor Country Revue. We lived in a town that literally only had a bar and a gas station and the nearest Walmart was a half hour away. Some drunk man even shot his wife in this town while I lived there and I felt like I was in a real life old-western movie. We performed our show every night, rain or shine, and I got to wear awesome patriotic cowgirl attire.

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One time, I lived in Amish Country for a few months and performed in an Amish Musical. There was no Walmart in this town either, but there were plenty of horses and buggies! Luckily the Producers let me have electricity where I was staying.

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Probably the craziest thing I did was travel the country and perform as a Grandma with a walker. Everyday I would dress up in this jumpsuit with santa hats in my belly as stuffing, and put on this wig. We performed all over the country at student camps with the organization Student Life. Personally, I don’t think I’ve ever looked better.

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Part of me wishes my life was crazy like it used to be. Settling down in Nashville has been rewarding, but also challenging. I liked living in random places for months at a time. I think that’s why I’m so antsy to get back on the road next year and continue touring. I love exploring and experiencing new places. I can’t wait to see where next year takes me…and I hope it takes me somewhere crazy!

About Erica Bryan

Erica’s passion for performing started when her mom brought her to her first theatre audition in Pennsylvania when she was eight years old. She didn’t make the cut. But the next year, she went back to the same audition and got the part. From an early age, Erica learned that with hard work and persistence, anything can happen. After her first show, there was no question that performing is what she would do for a living.
When she was twelve years old, her family moved to Roswell, GA, where she heard Country music for the first time. After listening to Reba and singing lots of Shania Twain karaoke, Erica decided she wanted to be a Country singer. Some years went by and, although Country music was always in the back of her mind, she started focusing more on her theatre opportunities, which led to her decision to study Musical Theatre in college.
While still in college, Erica performed professionally with Opera Birmingham, and spent her summers performing at theme parks and theatres. After graduation, she moved to New York City to continue her professional theatre career. While in New York, Erica got to train with Broadway’s finest actors and was cast in leading roles in Regional Theatres around the country. During one of her shows, Erica had the opportunity to perform with a Country band on the side. Call it coincidence or fate, but Erica was back singing Country music in the middle of a theatre contract, and she fell in love all over again.
After another year in theatre, it became clear to Erica that it was time to move to Nashville, TN and pursue her original childhood dream of being a Country artist. Shortly after arriving to Nashville, she landed a day job working for country hero, Reba McEntire, at Starstruck Entertainment. By night, she began crafting her own songs and writing skills. Within a couple months of songwriting, Erica’s songs started receiving the highest honors from the Nashville Songwriters Association. She recently released her debut single “This House Is Haunted,” and is receiving radio play in multiple countries. For the Country Record describes Erica as, “one of those rare multi-talented people who most only dream about becoming.” Erica is currently touring with her original music and plays keys, ukulele, and guitar to anyone who will listen.

Comments

  1. Murph-dawgy dizzy says:

    Loved reading all of this! I felt like I caught up on anything I’ve missed so far- good stories.

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