Saturday, 25 January 2014

Why I Never Became An Actor #4

Up until the end of the century all The Forays into acting had been through school.  They had been varying degrees of disastrous.  Big school productions with scripts, singing and a paying audience meant paltry cameo roles for me.  Tiny improvised often-unfinished plays in classrooms saw me taking the lead in roles that expanded with The Ego, but the best I could hope for audience-wise was the occasional open evening.

But then came The Big Opportunity to break away from school and prove myself among strangers.

After two nights of auditions, The Director (who we dubbed Chipstick because I accidentally spat a chipstick on him) told us:

I ascended the steps to the stage and felt along the curtain.  Where was the gap?  I was stuck in billowing curtain and there was no gap.  I was trapped.  I span round, arms flailing.  Someone inside pulled back the corner and I stumbled through.

“You’re not supposed to come through the middle,” said The Assistant Director (who we dubbed Sidekick) (we were SO witty).  “It’s weighted down.”

I walked unsteadily to the seat indicated.  I’d have rather stood.  Hover from foot to foot, breathing.  It was dark back there.  I sat down.

Of course it was.  I was first.  It probably wasn’t even a role.  I probably just had to turn up.

I stared at him as he rambled on.  Why did he have to bullshit me?  Did he have that little respect for me?  I had a lame part.  Just tell me.  It wasn’t the end of the world.  I was new here.  I didn’t expect better.

After I was told The Role, I was sent to the dressing room to wait for everyone else.  I picked up a copy of the script.  Four lines.  The First Non-School Production and I had four lines.  I was going to invite everyone I knew to this, for four lines.  I was going to travel into the city three times a week.  But what did I expect?  This was The First Step on The Career.  Obviously the big roles would go to long-time members.  Newbies like us didn’t stand a chance.

Slowly others joined me.  No sign of The Friends yet.  That was odd.

The Prune came in.  He only had a small role.

Two small roles. 

Two entire scenes to himself. 

He was pivotal.

The Butler came in.  

He had The Lead Role.

All the lead roles went to new members.

I own the video of the show.  My four lines?  They aren’t even caught on screen.

Have you ever dabbled in am dram?


  1. I enjoyed that. Which seems like a mean thing to say, as I'm basically validating your misery. Please, be miserable some more!

    My God, I forgot about all that hair.

    1. Misery makes funnies!

      Yes, I used to have hair.


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