A director friend of mine recently emailed me and asked if I was interested in being a part of a workshop production for a new play. I have done several projects with her now, including both of my last Fringe performances. This new workshop would have a minimal time commitment each week, but the project extended over two months. I expressed an interest at first, but then begged off the project as I wasn’t sure what my schedule was going to look like for the time in question. I wanted to work with her, but I didn’t think that this was the right project for us.
Then she came to see EECD, and over a few beers and a mad dash for the last train home, she told me a little bit more about the show and the role, and asked me if I would reconsider. She really liked the script and wanted to do a good job with this up-and-coming playwright; I was flattered that casting me was a part of her doing a good job. She sent me the script to entice me into accepting the part as well as sparing her the hassle of having to audition a whole bunch of white guys for a single role. That really is how things are done in this industry.
So she sent me the script, and I sat down with a cup of coffee to read the play and see what her excitement was all about. After reading no more than ten pages, I immediately sent her a text message that read “Not even done the script yet, but I’m in. No one else is playing this role but me.” The story and the characters made such an instant impression on me that I was willing to rearrange my schedules to be a part of this show.
It is a great role, and it has everything that an actor could want. It feels, paradoxically, that the role is both written for me and unlike everything I normally play. The character is going to sound like me and look like me, but there will be such a change in energy that he is not going to feel like me. Wonderful depth and complexity fill the script, and now I am super-ready to be a part of the show. And all of this from an opportunity that I almost passed on. I know that Cara (the director) and I are going to rock out on this, too! Just goes to show that sometimes it takes a little bit of stubbornness (on Cara’s part) and a little bit of luck (on my part.) I’m glad this all worked out, however, and I’m looking forward to working on this piece.
And on the best side, I don’t have to get powerbombed.