Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Fairy Tales and Reality I

I was 16 years old and it was my first real opportunity to get a part in the school play. I received the script about a day before auditions and feverishly studied the lines. I read the entire Shakespearean play and did research on the characters. I was so excited about this opportunity but had no idea whether or not I was good enough to get the part. 

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Our director was different than most. The first underlying rule was that you had to be in a couple productions before you even had a shot at a major role. I had only been in one of her productions and it involved twirling a parasol in the chorus. I think I had one line that I struggled with wanting to do because it involved joking around about tarot cards. 

Anyway, the director was not just an english teacher that was just interested in directing plays. She went to school for theatre and lived and breathed it most of her life. This lady was very involved in theatre education and even pursued professional adjudication and competitions for her students and the musical productions. 

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I was pretty much in love with the character of Rosalind in the fall play we were about to do. She was this strong woman, who being banned from the court for her love of Orlando, decided to disguise herself as a man in order to stay safe on her journey. She runs into Orlando in the woods and he doesn't recognize her but he speaks of his love for Rosalind. She agrees to "teach him the lessons of love" if he promises to pretend he(she) is Rosalind and comes to woo him(her) every day. Okay so it sounds really confusing but it is fabulous. Read it or watch it...

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Where was I? Ah yes... Never in a MILLION years did I think I had a shot at the lead. I couldn't dance to save my life but boy did I love to act. There is just something about being someone else for those 3-4 months that was freeing.

I walked into my audition clasping my script with all my might. (At this point I had the lines memorized.) I sat shaking in my seat watching others recite their lines. "What if I mess up the lines? I am going to make such a fool of myself. What am I thinking? I should just walk out now. I'm not going to get a part." My heart was pounding out my chest. 

Then I heard my name called, "DANAE" With my heart now in my stomach and my stomach up in my throat, I stood up. It took everything within me just to swallow at this point. My hand was still grasping the script and I was shaking profusely. 

to be continued...

1 comment:

The Mister said...

Don't read this comment if you don't want a spoiler. I don't remember working on this one, but as I recall you were heck on wheels in Les Mis and Pirates of Penzance.