Sunday, August 09, 2015

My Very Short Lived Acting Career

I am a performer. This is something I know about myself and I am very good on a stage when I have to do what I have to do. What I'm really good at doing is explaining things I already know to be true.

I like truth. I'm good at it. I'm good at presenting it, breathing it, making it real.

Things I'm not good at are acting, though. I don't like to act, which seems like a contradiction, but I realize the truth in it. There are aspects of me that are just simply better at being who I am then being who I am not.

For my off-broadway premier I chose a piece that was me, speaking to me, speaking to my life, a past life. Somehow, in speaking to that past life I realized that there was a part of it that was just acting, holding onto something that I could not really hold onto.

When I was sitting backstage with the troupe waiting for my term I was in my normal almost on stage place. I felt good, I felt strong. I felt fairly confident about what it was that I was doing. On that stage I would do what I needed to do and I would be fine.

The reality was different. The lights in my face were terrifying to me, somehow. I was nervous, edgy. The edgy came off in the performance. As I started to talk, working through what I rehearsed I realized that was part of the problem. I can do rehearsed but I'm much better off if I just speak it, roll with it, tell the story like a story.

So I allowed myself to embrace the story and went with it. I improved a little, I allowed the story to come through until the lights went down and I exited stage left.

"You're shaking like a leaf," says Hellion who catches me when I come off the stage.

He gives me a glass of wine and I sit, shaking, watching the rest of the performance and wondering to myself what the hell I was thinking.

My performance life is different. I prefer my reality to the unreality.

Still, I had my moment on stage and I don't regret it.

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