Tag Archives: show

We Were Dating,  Now We’re Not

2 Dec

Doing a show is like having a whirlwind romance, where you meet and get married in like a week, and said relationship lasts with total devotion, until you unceremoniously strike your home and get a Mexican divorce–however long your run is-days later.

…Because working on a character across a full rehearsal and production schedule, is absolutely consuming and requires not only devotion of time and physical and mental presence, but also through sickness and through health, as long as you both shall live (together .) 

…And it doesn’t matter if you “have a headache tonight, ” or “really need some alone time, ” or “start to feel suffocated” by their insistent presence. Doesn’t matter that it seems you –at times– have absolutely put yourself and your needs on the back burner and have from time to time gotten completely lost inside the relationship, which starts to blur (as time goes on)  in fully realizing just where you end and they pick up (or vice versa.) 

…You see each other through your finest moments,  and miserable worst, and yet you are able to commit fully to this marriage because –I guess,  really– of two things:

1. You have made this commitment with full knowledge of what is required of you, in front of all of those witnesses, who will hold your ass to it, by supportive teamwork. 

2. This passionate affaire, has a sell-by date, which you are also fully aware of on the outset, so: there’s really just no damn excuse not to give it your all,  while you can. 

At this point,  I’ve been married –MANY times. 59, in fact. I make Liz Taylor and Mickey Rooney look Catholic by comparison. And luckily for me,  I’ve enjoyed the HELL out of the bulk of them, and have bins and books full of our Honeymoon days together, which already make me misty-eyed with memory,  and I’m not even middle-aged as yet. 

…The thing is: as great as the bulk of those marriages are in my memory, there is even something singularly satisfying in the terrible ones, in that: I made the absolute best effort I could to make it work out, and even if it ended shitty,  I know that to be true. 

…Because I actually really really love to “commit.” 

…(In a show, that is.) 

…But along with these “marriages,” I’ve also had me some “flings.” 27, of note. And these,  while intriguing, only seem to mostly “hot and bother” me, and while enjoyable in the moment, leave me as unfulfilled at their ending, as a one-night-stand. 

–Which, in fact, most of them ARE.

The Staged Read, is an enigmatic animal. They are considerably lower maintenance than a real relationship in that you don’t live with the character. At most, you might workshop (or, “date”) it for a few days, but by and large, it’s just a tease. 

…Even if you really like the character. Even if the cast is a dream. Even if your Director is creative as fuck. You still are hampered from full investment to grow it into a real relatonship, because Staged Reads are the flings we have in foreign countries, while on Holiday. They aren’t allowed to become more than that, because of your surrounding circumstances, even if you really, really, really like them, and you get on with total ease, and know you could make the most magnificent children together…

…And even knowing this, a lot of the time, you still can’t help getting sucked into the “what if,” daydream which sometimes comes with the really, really special flings.

…These will be the ones you always pine over, the ones you wish you could learn all the  secret intimacies about…everything from the corny, “how they take their tea, ” to the deeply sheltered truths they hide… the ones that even though you held them for a moment,  you can’t help but think that they are one of those ones who,”got away. ”

Yesterday’s “Joe Egg, ” read is one of those for me. 

We dated heavily for several weeks, and it was disturbing but so enlightening, and…She’s gone now… 

…Out of my life… 

…The supremely gifted family: broken up. And though I am so very satisfied to have met the role at all,  never mind with this amazing group of people — I know in my gut-parts, she and I would have had one of THE best marriages that I have ever had…

…If only…

If only.

~D

Fatal Comedy

28 Aug

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A joke:

A chick steps off stage after her final number of a final performance, and suddenly silently bursts into tears. From equal parts joy, pain, and unfathomable relief, she crumples against the wall in the theatre wings as the final scene plays out onstage, and makes a promise to herself.

…”I’m never doing another fucking musical for the rest of my life. So help me God.”

…And she totally kept that promise. For four years.

…Then, one day (early this week) a Union house says, ” Hey yeah…we wanna pay you to do this musical.”

…So the chick totally undergoes a severe flashback musical trauma PTSD instantly, and fires back a response doing damn near everything to talk them outta it.

“I’m super rusty,” she says. “It’s been four years since I’ve sung a note! I didn’t audition for the musical on purpose…you really prob’ly don’t want me in this.”

….And then they say, “Um, yeah, no…we really do. This is like a legit paying gig offer, for our premier show, in our first season, with extension option. So…you wanna join us or what?”

…And the chick, who is still freaking out from the first time it was offered, realizes that shit just got real. There in no real choice here if she wants to move forward. This is that thing she’s been fucking waiting for, it’s here, it’s now. It’s that “time” and “place” and “opportunity” she has been working her ass off for: A pro Rep company, in her own town, blocks from her doorstep. And they want her.

…It’s here. All the things…are right here.

…So she fashions a response, and presses “send,” trying not to puke from terror and the insane truth that: getting what you want can sometimes be supremely overwhelming.

…And the punch line is:

She loses the bet, but wins all the things. Just one day…from outta nowhere.

…Which is all to say: hey guys, I’m doin’ a mutherfucking musical! And by some wink of fate, it happens to be this one:

https://youtu.be/9DDdM66_nSI

Who’duv thought…

I mean: really.

~D

Tick, Tick, Boom!

11 Feb

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You know how in every spy movie there’s a point with a bomb detonator  clock ticking away, and Hero-person needs to cut the wire, but doesn’t know which one, and then while you’re yelling at the screen to, “Fucking do SOMETHING!!,” they finally do…it goes *snip,* but the clock still keeps ticking on…because that’s the rules…and they’re sweating and crying, and you’re sweating and crying…and then for no apparent reason but the magic of cinema, the clock ends up stopping at the one-second mark?

…Yeah.  That’s what this show feels like.

I have felt that clock ticking away since literally day-one. I prepared myself the best that I could for it, and I have been working my ass off. We ALL have. Yet, I have never had a day where the technical aspects settled down so that the acting could have a chance to happen naturally.  I’ve never had a day where the tech, the props, the blocking, the fight choreography, the rehearsal clothes, the sightlines, hasn’t been the real core of what fueled the scene, rather than the situation of the education at hand. And frankly, going into Hell Week, that scares the living shit out of me. 

This is the point already universally recognized as where the Tech takes over and goes center stage, adding the gloss and paint to the show.  Problem is, it’s been tech non-stop already for like two months, and now we begin piling on more.  I’ve already ripped petticoats, torn the soles from my shoe, de-boned my corset, broken a fountain pen, annihilated several chairs …eaten piles of cold eggs, potatoes, and bacon, and racked up 150,000 bruises all over my body.  We’ve had to stage and re-stage so many times for sightlines and set adjustments, that just remembering what version we’re in now is starting to soup up the mix as well, and some of our key-most props and set components are still pending.

Listen, it’s a monster show for everyone here, from Design Team down to the Actors. And none of us are Wizards.  Things take time.  But for every second that ticks away, my body sweats a little bit more, my mind fights to hold onto the things that I CAN control and am responsible for, and I wait…

…I wait, and wait, and wait…

…And fight, and fight, and fight…

…Mutilating this second pocket-sized copy of the script with excessive repeated reviewing…trying really, really hard to have faith that the Theatre deities are going to step in on that last damn second on the ticking clock from hell I have running against me right now…

…And that, for no apparent reason…other than “Theatre logic” …

…We will Open, in nine days…

…Without going, “Boom!”

Fight on Team-Miracle. Lets please live up to the name!

~D

 

 

None

2 Feb

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Shitty peformance tonight. So, no blog…cuz who wants to hear me just bitch? Fuck, I hate when I let me down like that.
…Better tomorrow.

~D

The Inheritance Argument

23 Dec

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I  am eating Doritos at 1 am, after another whirlwind day of, “oh, but I never knew that that was gonna happen.”

…It’s becoming a norm for me, which is really unsettling for a person who clings to habits and planning like one of those suction-cup window Garfields, from the 80’s.

I am growing, as a human, they tell me.

…After changing plans with J, because of a Mr. Cuteness illness, I was swooshed into Greek eats with Ma, then recruited to theatre viewings with Marty with about 40 minutes warning, secured a ticket via JM, met up and saw the show wearing the same fleece get-up from 10 this morning, and had after-drinks, while solving all the artistic problems in the Universe, with The Fella and Marty.

…Then there was this whole brush with the law, and Shop 101 class, discussion of why you need a penis on your side when talking about anything having to do with motor vehicle repairs, and finally made it home in time to send out another late blog, which I view as “technically” the correct day it needs to be done in, even though it is actually “tomorrow,”  on account that I haven’t been to bed yet, so it is “technically” still “today”

This is getting way complicated, I know, but one tends to reach when attempting to justify oneself.

…Also, these Doritos are from yesterday’s lunch.  And they are gone now. There were only about 4 left…slightly stale.

…Listen: I’m tired (big surprise), and still haven’t finished all the stuff I needed  to do today.  Namely stocking stuffers, and the ever insufferable wrapping.

God, I hate wrapping.

…It is the job that is just never completed. 

Presents seem to breed, even in tight pocketbook circumstances, and here I sit to eternity, paying for the consequences.  And now I have this huge turn-of-the-century framed picture to wrap as well.  It’s Ma’s gift, and she already knows about it, as she pointed at it in an antique store and said, “I want that.”  So I obligingly purchased it for her.  And it was then placed in a garbage bag to keep the rain off it in transference to the car. 

…A garbage bag. 

…On a $210 Bronte-esq print with original Kensington Hyde Street framing from London.  With a stamped label.

This is the world of irony I live in.

…And now it sits in my room…in the same garbage bag, waiting for me to return its dignity by wrapping it in paper with sleighs and Christmas trees slobbered all over it, so Ma can open it in two days, while pretending the whole time to be totally surprised by its very existence.  And she will go on about it, just like she did in the antique store, as if she has never seen it before this moment…including the highly unsavory moment she likes to always include in matters of collectables in reminding me that, “this will, after all, belong to you one day.” 

…As if plotting for my inheritance upon my mother’s death is something that I always consider in my present-purchasing.

Me: Why the hell would you say that, even? It’s Christmas and  this is your gift. Every time you say things like this it feels like you have my name on a little sticky dot placed on the back, just waiting so when you drop off the twig someday, this will all be mine.

She:  Well, it will.

Me:  But I don’t wanna think about it!  For god’s sake, you’re my mother!

She: But it’s a really good picture.  And it would look nice in your bedroom and all.

Me: Stop it!  Stop it! I’m buying you a Christmas gift, for shit’s sake! I don’t wanna think of how it may look on my wall when you are dead!

She: …I’m just saying…

Me: Look: Do. You. Like. The. Picture?

She: I do.

Me:  Does it make you happy?

She:  It does.

Me:  Do you have a place to put it?

She:  Yes.

Me: Then can I please buy it for you without death being in the same sentence?

She:  Sure.

Me:  Alright then.

She: …But, just for future reference–

…These are the kind of Christmas conversations I have with my mother. Sober or not.  In joy or sorrow.  Death and inheritance are apparently very  huge to her, even though I am an only child, who has a habit of keeping absolutely everything but gum wrappers…because of some sentimental link or another.  Which tells me, I have been FED this disease from childhood (one suspects), and have been programmed to accept it.  And I adore it.  But not when talking about a picture I’m about to buy you, whose exsistance in your home you are only justifying as a weird kind of savings account placeholder for when you kick the bucket.

…So, let it be known.

…And now I’m off to wrap some more…

~D

The Vocal Rest Conundrum

1 Dec

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You would think that a person, alone in a house all day, could easily dedicate themselves to a necessary “vocal rest.”  But if it’s “me” we are talking about…forget it.

…I mean, for shit’s sake, I talk back to the fucking television, so this is a whole “thing” I have to actually pay attention and make a point to adhere to.

18 hours of silence. From end of last night to 6 PM today.

Last night, the cold graduated to in-and-out laryngitis, less than mid-way through performance…so I knew what would therefore be expected of me today. And I knew how hard it would be. Cuz this time last year, I was put on vocal rest ‘tween the matinee and evening performance of a musical, and it pert near killed me.

…Mostly cuz I had to be where everyone else wasn’t, so I could actually stick to the plan. It sucked. All the laughing and gabbing I was missing out on, just cuz I was trying to be “responsible,” and things. The weird thing is: I’m totally “responsible”…except when I’m tired of it, and then: I’m not. And right now, I’m tired of this fucking cold.

…I’ve coaxed, and coddled, and medicated, and mothered it non-stop, doing all the things you’re supposed to. And, aside from actually leaving my house in order to you know, “make a living” and fulfill my contracts and things…I’ve been LITERALLY in bed, every spare minute between the two.

No hang time with the cast.

No drinks.

No last day with The BFF.

No Zoo Lights, or Christmas time shenanigans.

No singing in the car…

…And (though not through lack of trying), also: no sleep.

It’s been night sweats with tossing and turning, peeling, raw, red noses, unlimited supplies of snot manufacturing, and a slowly depleting voice. I don’t have a choice but to cater to it all and continue to babysit it in every waking moment. I don’t have a choice but to honey and lemon-dose my way to sugar-shock…or hot doddy with actual liquor for the next two hours, giving a dignified amount of time to wear off and sweat out the buzz before curtain tonight.

…And I CANNOT go outside…in the one day of sunshine we’ve had in forever…to take a walk.

Not even a little one.

Not even bundled up.

…I have to just lay here, administer gunk as needed, extricate it from my body as it is produced, and keep m’damn mouth shut.

All. Day. Long.

…I’m been up since 9:30…have been peeing hot tea, cyan pepper and lemon extract for three days, and the amount of interaction I “cannot” have with my festing of “Slings and Arrows” right now, is freakin’ killin’ me, people.

…It’s killin’ me.

~D

“A Case Of The Fridays”

26 Oct

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I am having, “A Case of the Fridays.”

…This is when paychecks have already shown up, everyone from Corporate has already left for the weekend, Boss is out having cocktails, and I am sitting here basically waiting for phones to ring.  “A Case of the Fridays,” is actually oddly exhausting…all this nothingness after a week of everythingness, where you sit there and look at the volume of emails and contracts and reports you’ve sent out, sitting in the sorting file, and become reminded of just how much paperwork and record keeping you do all day long, everyday, and how it is never going to change, and how “retirement” is still like 30-something years away.

…”A Case of the Fridays” can be oddly depressing, at times, for an end-of-the-week “period” to five days of collected crap.

…And that’s when I remember that I have this whole OTHER job that defines me, and of which I am proud, and eager to work in, and learn from. Then, “A Case of the Fridays,” sorta starts to melt away into a muddy little puddle, that I will accidentally step in, first thing on Monday morning.

…But that’s another problem, two whole days from now, so lets not think about it at the moment.

…At the moment, all I need to think about is what to blog today. 

Not a whole lot to throw out there for you guys.  Just sitting here at my desk, and looking around for inspiration, doesn’t help much. 

The ancient Kennedy Administration furnace just conked back on, with a couple jiggles and a bang. Every time it begins it’s new cycle, it’s like raising the dead. But at least it is consistent, and though all is gross and wetness outside my wall of windows, inside we are holding to the low 70’s (because I can.) 

The phone rings.  I answer it.  The call is complete. 

…I sigh, and look around again.

Out in the lobby, on the carpet, is a spent cigarette butt. Tracked in (no doubt) from the tooth-grip of a Contractor’s boot. It’s all shriveled up and twisted…and cuz of the filter, looks a lot like a pretzel.

…I’m hungry.

…See how almost everything can turn into something about “food” with me?

Another phone ring.  You guys, I know…the suspense and adventure I’m giving you right now is just unbelievable.  And you’re welcome for that.

…”Marty” is dinging me with IM’s every so often, as we chat about yesterday’s blog, and what she’s eating that I wish I was eating (answer: a blueberry bagel), and how we are going to see a show tonight, and about what we are gonna eat before it, and who we are gonna see once we are there, and if I can slip out early…since it IS only Friday…and beat the traffic, maybe.)

…But then, it’s already a quarter after 3 anyway…at this point, how much of a jump on the commute can I really get?

…Plus I need to go home and maybe change or something first.  Or maybe not.

I have to pee.

Listen, I know this isn’t your usual post of topical theme and stuff, but I feel like we know each other well enough by now, for me to be like, “Guys, it’s one of those days, can I just do this stream of pointless narrative instead?”

…And you’ll be like, “Dude, whatever you need.  It’s been a WEEK, and we totally get that.”

…And I’ll be like, “See, this is why we hang out.  Because you ‘get it’ and stuff.”

…And you’ll be like, “Fuck YEAH we do.  Cuz I’ve got ‘A Case of the Fridays’ too!”

…And I’ll be like, (clap of hand on your back) “I feel yuh bro.  Let’s you n’ me leave early, and get to the more important things is life.  Like what’s for dinner.”

…And you’ll be like, “…Whatever it is: it’s gonna have beef in it!”

…And that’s the first time I’ll take your hands in mine, look you in the eye, and with all my soul tell you:

“I love you.”

~D

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