Sunday, April 26, 2009

The Duke - MakeBelieve

(The Duke and Dauphin)

The play was simply spectacular: I'm so happy I decided to try out for it. The cast became my second family, and I'm going to miss spending hours with them after school every day. It's been a long journey, but a rewarding one. The play could not have gone better. Three of the performances were completely sold out. This kinda raised the stakes though.

I had one nervous break down the day before opening night. During the one of the songs, I have to jump off of a flat that is four feet into the air. Did I mention there are four of us on that flat? Plus, we're jumping over someone who is pretending to be asleep. I wanted to practice jumping off before we did a run through, but I couldn't do it. I just stood up there freaking myself out. I had K come up and jump with me, and even then I couldn't do it. Then J. came and kinda gave me a pep talk. The three of us were supposed to jump off together, but, once again, I couldn't jump off. By this time I was so nervous about not being able to do this simple thing once the time came. Eventually my director came over and was going to help me jump off; I fell apart. I ran off stage crying. I felt very embarrassed. My director found me and offered an alternative instead of jumping, but I wasn't ready to take the easy way out. The good news is I jumped off for every performance.

I loved being the Duke; even though, it meant I had to be a man. The makeup artist had fun trying to make me look more manly, and when she was finished she would say, "You look so pretty...I mean handsome." I couldn't take myself seriously in the makeup until I put on the costume. The side burns were hilarious though, and ripping them off was even better. I even dyed my hair to match them. I didn't know how great it was to be somebody different on stage. Once I was on stage it wasn't me who was acting: I was the Duke.

The cast had so much fun back stage. We would mouth the words to every song and dance if we knew the choreography. Of course, then there were the numerous "dance parties" we had while getting our makeup done. Did I mention how many inside jokes we started? I would share, but I'm afraid none of you would get them haha.
Some of the time E. and I had to pretend to have conversations until our lines came, so we would start talking about what we were going to do once we bought the pixie dust, and how we were going to steal Billy's watch, then it turned into us mouthing, "Watermelon jello chocolate peanut butter." One of us would respond, "No not the chocolate. I can't eat that." Both of us are lactards.

(product of one of the inside jokes)
(We're home!)

(Stroking the facial hair)

After the last performance, the guys take down the set, and the girls take care of the costumes. While the guys were still working, a bunch of us stood around talking and having a great time joking around. I think at one point we all broke out into the hokey-pokey. Of course, by then it was midnight. I met one of J's friends, Stevie (I'll use his nickname because it's nowhere near his actual name). We actually hit it off and spent most of the night talking. I drove with him to the school and then to Denny's. At Denny's, I crashed: The endorphins completely wore off, and I wanted to go to sleep so bad. But then the food came, so that made everything all better. Who knew breakfast at 2 a.m. could taste so good? Stevie came over to sit with me; I ditched him shortly after we got to Denny's to go sit with my sister. Well I wouldn't say ditched: I was sharing food with my sister, and I hate eating in front of people especially guys. Around 3 we all decided it was time to go home. Hugs and good byes were exchanged (multiple times I might add), and then T. drove my sister and I home. I almost fell asleep in the car.

So now I find myself having MakeBelieve withdrawals and talking about group therapy with the cast. It's hard to believe the sort of attachment and bond that forms during rehearsals. All the years I wasn't in the play, I hated everyone who was in it. The reason for that was mostly because they had what I wanted. They were a family and had so much fun together. This year I finally got the chance to be apart of that, and I loved every minute. I got to know the cast so well and developed friendships I never thought possible. It also gave me a chance to show them a side of me that no one has ever seen before. I just wish it wasn't over yet.


They Just Call Her Helen said...

I'm glad you had fun. The backstage fun is always the memorable stuff :)

Anonymous said...

Sounds like fun! Although I don't think I've ever head of that play before. Eh . . . I'm always the techie for this stuff because I can't sing/dance/act.

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