Friday, January 15, 2010

Screwing Around

I'm having a tough time so I wanted to give you a lighthearted post for a change instead of moaning and groaning about how hard my life is. :)

As an actor, I've been trained to play pretend.  I walk onstage, throw myself into the life circumstances of the character, say the words I've been given and perform the actions necessary to tell the story, and go back offstage.  I spend the rehearsal process trying to best understand the life circumstances, to use the script to figure out who the hell the character is and how she would react to various situations.  I know enough about the character to give an honest portrayal while I'm onstage.

So what do I do backstage when I perform in a play - comedic or dramatic?  Screw around.  I tell inappropriate jokes, dance, bullshit and walk around in my underwear.  Sure, I may review my lines when needed, but I'm done rehearsing when the show goes up.  I don't work myself into an emotional state long before entering because the audience is paying to see the honest emotion as it occurs.

This photo by director Jacob Smith perfectly captures my last full-length show at Theatre Unleashed.  There was this weird flirtation that went on between my character and Jim Martyka's character that they wanted to capture for archival photos.  The problem here is that the photo wasn't taken during the show but before the show one evening.  We were supposed to hold an uncertain romantic pose for the camera, but Jim said something (as he is also a bit of a troublemaker) and I cracked up.  This photo perfectly captures the rehearsal process.  Aren't you sad you missed this play?

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