We had the good fortune of connecting with Josh Galitsky and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Josh, do you have a favorite quote or affirmation?
Yes, my favorite is a partial quote by Albert Camus:
“In the midst of winter, I found there was, within me, an invincible summer.”
I recently completed a fully original, interactive stage production called, “Invincible Summer,” which was based in part on this quote.
What I believe it means is that even in our darkest moments, there is an unconquerable soul that will survive and eventually flourish. This spirit is made up of memories, joys, lessons, hope and unconditional love. So even as winter “howls its raw, moaning breath,” there is still something within, warm and real and right, pushing back against the “bitter death of the light.”
The production formed itself organically into an exploration of some rare or perfect moment or series of moments in each performer’s life that they considered “their time,” when all was right with the world and in their hearts. For some, that special campfire just before summer, when friends gathered, and possibilities seemed endless. Maybe it was the innocence just before it was lost. Or perhaps falling in love at overnight camp. Could even be the cool safety of childhood before a painful divorce. Each “invincible summer,” told of a short stretch of time in a sort of bliss, where you felt you had everything you could ever want or need.
Let’s talk shop? Tell us more about your career, what can you share with our community?
I didn’t grow up an Artist, that’s for sure. I was all about basketball. Movies a little. Reading not so much. Theatre didn’t really happen until I acted for the first time in Grease at the University of Massachusetts, Amherst. I was bouncing from major to major in college until I got bit by the acting bug and I was off and running! I created my own major, Theatre and Creative Writing, and that’s all I wanted to do.
After college, I proved to myself that I was a pretty decent actor but started to get more into directing. I earned my Master of Arts at Emerson College in Boston where I met some extraordinary teachers and talented friends. I discovered devised theatre (created from scratch) and anthology-based theatre (taking one theme and exploring it richly with everything from literature to poetry to music and beyond.) This was the next great artistic transformation in my life where another world of endless possibilities seemed wide open and shimmering.
I came to Los Angeles and started my own theatre process/workshops/company called, The Sacred Actor, devised, interactive, immersive, original stage shows, and multimedia projects built from scratch.
The basic philosophy of The Sacred Actor is saying, “YES” & “AND” to anything that anyone is passionate enough and brave enough to share with the group. We create a safe, judgement-free playground where one can experiment, expand their boundaries, step out of their comfort zone, act the fool, try the untried, shatter through fears, “fall on their face with enthusiasm,” unleash their genius, and hopefully have an empowering, incredibly fun and positively life-changing experience during the process of creating meaningful work.
Life is about process. We never quite “arrive” do we? We strive. We reach. We grow. We imagine. And, it is in the hoping, yearning, clawing, that a fulfilling life is formed. I believe in the creative process and in each person having the opportunity to both shine in their own singular spotlight while also being part of something greater than themselves. The goal of this challenging, sometimes therapeutic, often cathartic work is ultimately to enjoy and be inspired by the process of creation itself and by each other. And sometimes, when the stars align just right, we get to do the most fascinating, dynamic, and genuine work possible, both individually and collectively.
I believe that life is chiefly about service. We are here to try and love one another unconditionally, to make someone’s life better, more inspiring, more hopeful, less painful, less lonely. One of my greatest joys is to help others achieve their goals and dreams. Being able to guide a process with a generous, kind, compassionate, inspiring and enthusiastic hand in order to help someone see what makes them beautiful, powerful, worthy, gifted and unique is such a blessing. It’s a spiritual thing for me, what gives my life purpose and meaning. And I wouldn’t trade it for anything under the “celestial skies.”
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
Los Angeles gets a bad rap as a vapid, film and TV-only town. Yes, it has its demons, but it is also spellbinding just how much creativity and talent is here. Before the inevitable people-watching and celebrity sightings, the first place they must see is the vast and stunning Pacific Ocean. So maybe a drive up and down the coast (in a rented convertible?) After the awe of this, I would take them to all the silly spots that most first-time visitors usually like to go; to see the Hollywood sign and Boulevard, Mann’s Theatre, The Dresden (Lounge) with Marty and Elayne (from the Swingers movie), Disneyland, Venice, and pretty much anywhere else this “turista” wanted to go. But after all that stuff, I would introduce my friend to the endless culture, restaurants, theatre, museums, flea markets, live music and crazy events of every shape and size. LA is everything you think it is from watching movies and TV. And so much more!
The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
I hope this doesn’t seem like a copout or an Oscar speech, but I have to thank everyone I have ever met. God. Family. Friends. Teachers. Students. Counselors. Campers. Theatre folk. Animals. I’ll even take the enemies. There isn’t anyone or anything that hasn’t made some mark on me to make me who I am today. (For the good, the bad and the ugly of that!) I guess special shoutouts would go to my Dad for being my anchor in the world, my Mom for my creative DNA, my sister for her resilience, and to friends from grade, middle, high school, college, grad school and every other part of my interesting and crazy life. I think at this point (hopefully) they all know who they are.
Other: I’m not linked to much social media. I believe when the timing is right and the stars align, my “Tribe” will find me.