The #FTSF prompt for this week is "I used to love ..."
I used to love participating in theatre, in both school and community productions. As a kid, I was involved in well over 20 productions, sometimes acting/singing, sometimes assistant directing/teaching, and sometimes working with the crew. I've done lighting, make-up, costuming, sound effects, performed multiple parts in the same production, played a guy, you name it. I even had an opportunity to choreograph a few numbers once, but that didn't go so well. Although I was actually shocked to be paid for my efforts (completely unexpected, especially since I was in the 10th grade), I was frustrated that the cast (friends/peers) were not inclined to follow my instruction and basically winged it. I think it was our age at the time – they didn't want someone their own age telling them how it should be done, and I wasn't comfortable asserting myself in that way with them. I was fine with that when it came to acting, but not with choreography, which was definitely not my forté.
One of the funniest things I remember was during a dress rehearsal for Guys & Dolls. The marching band was using the auditorium for an event that night, so we were relegated to the cafeteria, and the director had wanted to make a hasty retreat before the crowd let out from the band event, so he was rushing us through. I was assistant directing and also filling in during the opening scene as a street walker (a/k/a hooker).
The director would instruct everyone as they passed, but when he got to me, he said "OK, Chrissy's a pro – she knows what she's doing." I proceeded, and as I crossed the stage, a ripple of laughter began to take hold. It took a few seconds for my brain to catch up, and I stopped center stage with my hands on my hips … "Ahhh, Mr. H, would you care to retract that last statement?!?" "What?! Come on, we're trying to get through…GASP! Oh my God, I'm soo sorry!" Yup, he had inadvertently referred to me as a "pro," as in a real hooker. I still had a few more years with him, so I made sure to never let him live that one down.
Another funny one for me was when assistant directing a production of Annie Get Your Gun. A good friend of mine was playing the lead, the Ethel Merman role of Annie Oakley, and went blank on opening night, forgetting half the songs. I ended up belting them out from offstage. Lucky for her, I was right there working on lights ... and I'm VERY loud!
There were a number of factors leading to my giving up the theatre, but I do think about it often and sometimes contemplate dipping my toes back in the water some day. Those were fun times!
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Janine ~ http://www.janinehuldie.com