Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Phoctober the twenty-third

Play rehearsals are strange things for this actor. Too fun to be work, but sometimes too frustrating to be anything else. Rehearsals are where we begin our tentative passes at the scripts we are preparing for the world. We nourish our eventual performances in the hopes that one day the script which currently wobbles on fawn's legs will become something bigger, something greater.

We run our lines a lot, talk about the abstract concepts we hope are hidden beneath them. There is usually quite a lot of joking around, of good-natured ribbing. The energy is frenetic and strange and unlike any other thing I have yet encountered.

It can be difficult personally, as actors can sometimes be incredibly friendly during the entire run of a show and then disappear without a trace. This isn't really the character flaw I might have implied. They simply move on to the next show, which is as time-consuming and intensive as the last, and the cycle starts anew. I imagine it is much the same in any career where landing a job only means a few weeks or months before the hunt for a new gig must begin. One learns not too form too strong an attachment to most of the people one meets at a rehearsal. Except, of course, that sometimes one finds a lifelong friend from among a cast. It's a weird thing.

And sometimes, amid all of the time and the chaos and the line-running, sometimes a single line or a scene just happens and it's better than it was in your head, different from what you imagined when you first read the script. The other actor is giving you something different, and you respond to it, and all of a sudden it's right.

I've been thinking a lot about acting lately, spending a lot of time with scripts and at rehearsals. I surprised myself yesterday by saying to someone that I thought I might want to continue acting again after the curtain falls for the final time on the current show.

This show has been more chaotic than any other I have ever worked on, and still I have found some remnant of the things that I loved about this kind of work. So that is something.

Anyway, here's a shot I took at rehearsal on Sunday. Two actors discussing a scene with the director.


Other Phoctobering:

All Phoctober posts from this site.

Roberta gets the Phoctober spirit.

Absolute Vanilla catches some African music.

Taffiny and sleepy bees.

Matthew on contemporary Woodstock.

Sameera retrofits some Phoctober in four installments. One. Two. Three. Four.

It isn't too late to join the fun. Just do a photo post, mention Phoctober, and come and tell me about it in the comments.


Taffiny said...

This is really interesting. Thanks for telling us about it. I never knew/thought about the stuff you mention. It is great you are enjoying it through the chaos.

Taffiny said...

by the bye,
they are all me, a triple identical post, blogger and I our having issues today.

Liz Dwyer said...

Fantastic that you are enjoying this so much that you want to possibly keep it going. The chemistry with your cast must be fab. Good for you.

Lane Mathias said...

All sounds like great stuff:-)

The photo looks like one of those 50's acting workshop pictures. Love b&w pics.

Michelle | Bleeding Espresso said...

I saw the photo first then read the text; you completely fooled me. I thought you had lifted a photo from the Golden Age of film.


Unknown said...

Great insight, Maht. I think the business of moving on applies to us all, not just actors - change jobs or change career focus and people who had been really good mates just fall away. But the fun thing is one can stay in touch with them and one always meets new people. The whole of life is a play in so many ways.

PS Have phoctobered again for the 24th.

Meloney Lemon said...

Love the retro B&W. Look Back in Anger - then go over to mine for some orange and blue phoctobering!

Unknown said...

That's a great shot and glad you are enjoying the acting.

The Moon Topples said...

Taffiny: I expect you'll get more theater stories in the coming weeks. Certainly they seem to spring to mind lately.

Liz: Like any group of folks, the chemistry is better with some than with others, but the experience has whet my appetite for this sort of work again, so, who knows...

Lane/Soggy: I never would have thought it looked old-timey if you guys hadn't said so. I was distracted by that damned big-screen television in the background. So, thanks for the new perspective.

AbVan: True, true. I think I was pointing more at the short duration of the friendships, though. One generally forms longer friendships in more stable fields.

Meloney: Been there, linked that. Thanks for Phoctobering again!

Ver: Thanks, and, well, thanks again. I'm glad, too.

Sameera Ansari said...

Thanks a lot for including my "retrofits" as you put it!Will try taking some more before this month ends.Btw,I think there is an error with the link of my third installment.Do look into it when you have time.Take care.Good day :)