Meeting most of the cast in a bit to have brunch and run lines. That should be fun. And I think I'll have a bloody mary while I'm at it. It is Sunday after all and I haven't had brunch with a bloody since my friend Sheryl was in town.
Philip Henslowe: Mr. Fennyman, allow me to explain
about the theatre business. The natural condition is one of insurmountable
obstacles on the road to imminent disaster.
Hugh Fennyman: So what do we do?
Philip Henslowe: Nothing. Strangely enough, it all turns out well.
Hugh Fennyman: How?
Philip Henslowe: I don't know. It's a mystery.
Huh? What? Yes more casting changes. Jorge resigned over the weekend, in order to do another project, (one that pays more than a stipend!) And while the news was a bit of a blow this late in the process, I think this may actually work out quite well.
The very talented JEFF HOUSE is stepping up to take on the challenge of this role. He was someone we strongly considered after the first round of auditions and his name has come up repeatedly as we've gone through the various cast permutations. Since I strongly believe that everything happens exactly as it's meant to happen, I think this has worked out perfectly. I'm really looking forward to working with him and seeing what he brings to the role.
So stick around, this is going to be good!
Creativity is messy. It doesn't follow a straight line, it meanders and backtracks and circles. And sometimes it frustrates.
You'll hear people talk about left brain/right brain - left brain is logical, is analytical, is detail and fact oriented, right brain is creative, is emotion oriented, feels. When I take those "quizzes" or "personality tests" that you can find all over the internet, in women's magazines and other various places, I test smack dab in the middle. When I worked in finance I tended to use more of my left brain, as an actor I relished in the joy of my right brain in the moment zen. When I directed for the first time I discovered a new challenge: in order to do it right, I had to engage both sides of my brain simultaneously. I loved it.
Right now, I face a similar challenge - as producer I need to be very left brained: money, details, specifics, deadlines. But I'm also acting which means letting go of the timeline and being present to the moment. Unlike directing where both channels had to work together, I need to keep these two worlds seperate in order to make sure they both work well. And that is proving difficult.
In every project I've ever worked on there has been a point - usually right before it all came together - when I was sure the whole thing would be a disaster. I know that is part of the process. I know it works itself out. But trusting that process is my challenge right now.
And I know that this is an incredibly talented and capable group of people that is working together: the director, the stage manager, and all nine of the actors. I know that they are professional and seasoned and want to shine. I know that everyone involved wants to look good doing what they are doing - so they will not let it fail. And my feeling will catch up to my knowing, sooner or later (probably right after opening night, which is usually when these feelings go away.)
That last parenthetical statement might be the crux of my issue: when I've been an actor in the midst of rehearsals, and I feel these very familiar feelings of doubt, I usually haven't yet invited anyone to the show. My friends, my family, my industry contacts haven't yet heard anything, and I can take refuge in that thought: no one that I know will know! And then we get through the crazy part of rehearsal and I feel better. Then, I can confidently start to invite people to see the show. This time around, because I'm producing, because I want to fill the seats, because it's important; I started telling people about this months ago. I have family planning to come up from Pennsylvania, friends coming in from out of state, people donating their time and their money in support; and that is scary! It's not just me following my muse for my own enjoyment; it's me following my muse and hoping that you'll come along for the journey and have a good time. All done on faith that yes, it will be worth it!
And it will. I know it will.
Come to the show on June 9th (4:00pm) and stick around afterward for a meet and greet with the cast and crew! We'll be answering questions, signing autographs, hanging out and having fun - and we'd love to see you there!
Where: The Festivity Lounge
When: Thursday June 9th, 6-8 pm
That was fun! It's so good to be in the process again! And I'm really loving the cast and the collaborative process. Can't remember if I mentioned already, how this particular show evolved out of the isolation I often felt while living in LA. I took a stand-ip class whem I first moved out there; not because Iwanted to necessarily do stand up, but because I wanted to force myself to write, and like many acotrs thought I might want to write a one-woman show....But, while the writing bug did take hold, I spent so much time alone out there that writing a full on play with nine characters seemed to be a much better choice: "Hey, I'll crete something that forces other people to play with me!" Now it's definitely harder to stage, harder to juggle, harder to finance a big ensemble piece than it is a one woman show - but GOSH, I am having FUN!!!!
Anyway, the cut's we made to the first act are working and the actors are all really funny so even if my words suck they will make you laugh. (My words don't suck - but they make them WAY funnier than what's on the page.)
And later today I will be announceing our replacement for the r
Good news for our JOE - congratulations to Armand Mazza for booking a substantial role in a big movie. He is so talented and such a nice guy: he really deserves all the success in the world.
Bad news for us though! He won't be able to do the show. And he wasso good! Anyway, we're looking for a replacement. WAAH!
Funny - today before I heard from Armand, I posted this quote as my Facebook status: “An obstacle is often an unrecognized opportunity” (anon) and I am sure that this will all turn out for the best, but it's hard. I am trusting fate. Or god. Or whatever force in the universe it is that has been acting to bring the various elements together so perfectly thus far, to continue to do so.
We have managed to put together a really incredible group of human beings for this project. The energy in the room last night was just so positive and playful and loving. And Talented with a capital T. All these elements together make me happy.
Over the years, I've found myself on occasion, turniing away from the theatre. Pulling myself out of the game. When I have, I'm miserable, and it doesn't last long before I find some project to pull me back in - to keep me sane. Those times that I stopped though, were necessary for me. At some point the joy of acting had dissappeared: I would get caught up in the "bizness" of show biz, the competition, the desperation even, and I would stop having fun. And if I'm not having fun, you can bet I'm no fun to watch.
So, during those times off, I would let go of the baggage I had picked up along the way and reconnect to the things that make me love what I do - the reasons I can spend hours and hours in rehearsals, on stage or on set for little or no pay and be thrilled to be there. The fact that it is fun. That it is playful.
The thing that's exciting about what I felt in that room last night - the thing that's filling me with joy - is that it truly feels like we are all there with that kind of experience in mind. We're all eager to play, to discover, to explore. Plus, theatre is such a collaborative art form - when there's support and trust in the players around you it can truly become much bigger than the sum of it's parts. This might be one of those times.
Much will be revealed over the next few weeks. There will be bumps on the road and growing pains, I'm sure. But so far there has been an almost magical energy around the project. Things are coming together so easily and so well that you'd think someone up there has a vested interest in this thing working. At this point, I'm just enjoying the ride and I'm happy to see where it takes me. and I'm so happy to be on this ride with this group: Thom, Maureen, Armand, Joe, Stephanie, Jorge, Peggy, Art, Colista, Ameer, William - hope you guys are having fun too!
Not that my mother reads this blog (doubt she even knows it exists!) but if she did happen to stumble upon it, I just want her to know "I love you!!! And I hope you have a very happy day!"
Musings on creating...and whatever else it is that I do. hypnosis, life coaching, writing, acting, directing, taking leaps of faith, etc.