Matching with your bestie through the Marriage Pact is one thing, but sticking with them through all the trials and tribulations of college is another. Georgia and Tori have done both.
Since matching in February of their freshman year, Georgia and Tori have shared three unforgettable years of art, adventure, and discovery together. Now seniors in NYU’s drama department, they speak with the heart and authenticity of people pursuing exactly what they’re meant to. And while their paths through college haven’t been identical, their close friendship and admiration for each other has endured the test of time.
Georgia and Tori both study drama at the NYU Tisch School of the Arts, where they first met three years ago through Playwrights Horizons Theater School. I asked each of them about their journeys through college over the past two years.
We both started in Playwrights together, but we were in different classes for a while last year. Fall semester of my junior year, I had the chance to put-on a one-woman show. I was that woman. I wrote it and co-directed it with my partner, and I brought on a stage manager and set designer. It was really hard to get done because of outside circumstances, but I did it, and it was something I’m really proud of.
And Georgia did see it. She said it was her favorite. I don’t know if it’s still her favorite, but it was her favorite at the time.
I loved it. It was amazing. It was very much about friendship in a lot of ways, and I saw a lot of Tori in it. And a lot of Tori that I didn’t necessarily know before.
We both kind of found our little niches in theater. But we love working together. At least, I think Georgia is great to work with.
Georgia clearly reciprocates.
It’s been awesome to stay friends all this time. I’m also friends with Tori’s partner, and Tori is friends with my partner. We’ve definitely found a shared community that we love.
After spending a few semesters in different classes, Georgia and Tori finally had the chance to work together during their study abroad program in Berlin this past spring.
At Playwrights we were all working on our individual projects. But we’d always meet up in the Tisch building—especially freshman year—to read our plays to each other, work on homework together, all that stuff.
But this past semester, we studied abroad together in Berlin, so we spent quite a bit of time together.
They told me a bit about Berlin, a city that felt both foreign and strangely like home. From visiting eccentric art markets to consuming copious amounts of German beer (legally, of course), Georgia and Tori relished every moment of their study abroad experience.
There’s a huge appreciation for the arts in Berlin. The endowment for the arts there is like four times that of the US. So because there’s so much funding, there’s tons of gorgeous art everywhere. There was one time where we got an Instagram ad for this queer market that was in Berlin. We all lived in the same dorm building, which was awesome. So every time we went out the door there was a chance we could all run into each other. So we yelled, “Tori, there’s a queer market happening, you have to come with us!”
So we ended up going to this awesome art market together. It was gorgeous, there were two different floors, there were multiple rooms, and a whole outdoor section. I got an art print of disco balls that look like titties. Then we left and went to this beer garden, which was so much fun. We took a photo booth strip of all of us crammed into the booth. It was a fun night.
I don’t know if Georgia will remember this, but I hope she does. Another night, we were coming home late, or early in the morning, depending on who you are. The drinking age in Berlin is 18, so we weren’t completely sober. And Georgia was talking about how when she was in Spain, she could speak almost fluently in Spanish.
So I asked her to try to speak Spanish with me, but it kept switching to German, so we ended up just talking in this weird mixture of Spanglish and German the rest of the night.
The experience that took the cake, however, was completing their group project at the end of the semester. The final product was a multimedia labor of love that caricatured their identities as drama students, drawing on themes of institutional power, exhibition, and self-discovery.
We worked on a project called “Slut for the Institution”, which was our partially filmed, partially live performance piece. Tori’s partner was in that as well, along with two of our friends. It started as an exercise we did for a class, where we had to rewrite a Brecht text about war, called “The Horatians and Curiations.” Someone would rewrite it, and then the next person would rewrite the first person’s rewrite, and so on. And then we decided to stage it.
Part of it had a movie going on behind us, and it ended up being this post-modern play about graduation. Me and Tori’s partner were acting as feelingless robot-esque principals and administrators. And then Tori and a couple of our friends were the grads, and they were dancing in this very provocative, Burlesque way.
We were trying to make commentary on a couple different things, but it was sort of a take-what-you-can kind of thing. Part of it was definitely about the things that we’re expected to do as drama students for our school, to represent our school, to pay our school. And then we’re put on display and thrown out into the world, and we’re kind of dancing around not knowing what we’re doing. It was a lot of fun. And I also got to direct Tori in the filmed portion of it, which was really fun.
Georgia also took on the role of intimacy director, because in the play I actually had to make out with our friend Sophia.
All three of us had known each other since freshman year, so it was very strange to witness.
I feel like with intimacy direction, there are times where you can be a little too cautious, or have no caution at all, but Georgia did a great job of balancing that.
Tori and Georgia commented that their friendship has not only adapted, but has thrived as they’ve begun working together.
It’s interesting because our friendship can still live in any working environment. But at the end of the day, sometimes you have to be like, “I’m gonna tell you something from a critique point of view, and not a friend point of view.” And I think that’s important for a friendship, so you don’t hurt people’s feelings.
I think we’ve also been quite good at setting boundaries, and I don’t think we’ve ever had a conflict over a project. We’re good at designating when we're working and when we can just be friends.
This fall, Tori will be moving to Strasberg Theater and Film Institute to focus on method acting, while Georgia will stay at Playwrights to direct a project before graduating at the end of the semester. I asked the pair what they’re most excited about for the final chapter of their college experience.
I’m looking forward to directing a project. I haven’t led one of my own, but it’s kind of what I came to this school to do. So I’m really excited for that. And I’ll be graduating in the fall, so just one last semester. In the spring I'm hoping I can work in costume design, hopefully self-produce, and just see where things take me.
I’m looking forward to having more time. Senior year, you can finally take the classes you really want to, and they aren’t filled up. I’m also really excited to finally get my feet under me again. I have some things lined up auditioning-wise, and just got my job back after traveling. So it feels good to have that footing. I feel secure.
While Georgia and Tori plan to make New York their home base for the foreseeable future, they look forward to one day exploring more of what the world has to offer. One thing’s for certain: these aspiring artists are bound to make waves wherever they land.