Invisible Bruise – Sagesse

This is not the most flattering thumbnail. 

However this was a great experience and the whole series turned out really well. Directed by Melanee Murray Hunt for Sagesse, the Invisible Bruise series explored coercive control. The many ways it can show up and the unexpected ways it can impact people. 

In this short video, I play a woman who seems to be in control of everything in her life. Except she isn’t. 

We shot the whole series on Zoom, if you can believe it (and I know you can) because we were in the middle of one of the periods of pandemic lockdown. But life, and creativity, and storytelling, must go on. By crafting the stories so that it was natural that they appear as online conversations, our writer/director Melanee found a really elegant solution to what might otherwise be a crippling problem. Actors want to be in the same room! We want to act WITH each other! And also, how do you show coercive control when there is this intermediary between you. Can you still be controlled when you’re not in the same physical space? Of course you can. We let ourselves be controlled in myriad ways, and coercive control relies on the emotional experience of the person receiving. 

Anyway, I was pleased to be shooting in my own home, in my own closet. Sort of symbolizes the majority of the experience of the pandemic.


Cover of John Lennon’s Imagine. Imagine a holiday season where can all be together as one – one day!

She Don’t Disappoint Me (Like You Do)

  This song has a super secret message in it! See if you can guess what it is. Music and lyrics by Ella Jean Haggis and Nicole Zylstra Featuring Terry Lacroix on bass, April Cruz on amazing harmonies, and Nicole Z on vocals and guitar.  

Swann Song

Mythologically inspired. Swann song is a re-imagining of the Greek myth of Leda and the Swan. In our version, Leda is a strong lady who stops by the pub to tell her friends why she’s gotta move on.

Hit Me, Britney

We do not own this song. This is a loving tribute to Britney Spears, done as if it were a Johnny Cash song. Featured: Terry Lacroix – bass Nicole Zylstra – vocals, guitar, arrangement April Cruz – awesome harmonies

About Nicole

Song/Writer. Improviser. Speechifyer. Person of Interest. I don’t like improv. I love it. I’ve been telling stories my whole life. It started with playing Barbies with my friend Josette Campbell next door. Josette liked defining what the barbies were doing ahead of time. I always wanted to give them a voice and “just see what …