Sunday, October 11, 2009

Moping about

It's hard to know where to start this update. I feel like so much has happened, so much is different and yet I'm not sure if I can put it completely into words.

I'm at the end of my first weekend without doing the show. No rehearsals, no frantic paperwork upkeep and no show to call or fret over. It's nice in that I feel like I'm finally catching up on some sleep and I have been able to take my time cooking and eating and seeing Jacob for more than, say, 15 minutes at a time...

But, I have been in a bit of a funk as well - undoubtedly partly due to the fact that I'm not checking in with the actors, trying to get my cues right and somewhat nervously anticipating the next technical melt-down. Maybe I'm missing the excitement of the unknown; will an actor pull something crazy? Will the light board spazz out again? Will the audience actually laugh in all the right places? Or maybe I'm just missing the camaraderie that the stress of pulling off a show often brings to a cast and crew.

I have really enjoyed feeling in my element throughout the rehearsals and the run of The Producers. It was great to be back doing something I love and am reasonably adept at, and the feeling of accomplishment that it brings. Not that being a mom isn't a great(er) accomplishment, but it's harder to look back at a day where all you have is a stack of dirty diapers, a sink full of dishes and the knowledge that you and the kid made it through another day to show for it. In theatre there is instant gratification; the audience's applause, the actor's excitement, the instant high when a series of cues is executed perfectly...

And yes, I'll be honest - I love the recognition I get for doing it. Hearing that I'm great to work with, being thanked for solving a conflict. And also, being listened to was a nice change of pace...

Joris is the greatest little guy in the universe, but he is going through the usual protesting-at-everything-and-doing-the-exact-opposite phase. And it's hard enough to deal with when it's just him (he actually responds remarkably well to both reasoning and threats - of the "if you don't cooperate we won't be able to go to ____" variety) but when he's with Avery or Isla and gets them on board with the mutineering I am often tempted to just sit in the middle of the room to make sure they're safe but otherwise just letting them do whatever it is they want to do do 'cause hot damn, I just don't want to argue, referee, threat, plead and cajole anymore.

It is really quite disheartening to have #1 pull off the socks and shoes you just wrestled on while you are trying to get the same accomplished for #2. All because you want to get out the door to go to the goddamn playground - as a favor to the little hobbits who are now screaming "no, no, NO! Run away!" and then promptly run into another room.

Contrast this to me telling the actors that it's time to take their places. This announcement is followed by a chorus of "thank you, places!" and then... lo and behold... they get to their places. By themselves. And put their own shoes on!

So, I guess I miss my power. And I miss working with creative, smart, egomaniac lunatics. Or, at least, the adult conversation that it brings about. 'Cause what childcare and script writing don't provide is a merry band of colleagues to share your experiences with.

Anyway. I'm thinking about the future. What I want to do. What I can do. And how to combine the wanting to with reality.

1 comment:

Sarah B said...

Hmm, is there anyway to combine the two? Nah, managing toddler actors sounds....unmanageable.

Good luck on your next step. Stage managing sounds fun :)