Thursday, July 8, 2010

For the kids

Last week, I started performing in a touring children's show. I'm the substitute actor for the other performer who has a lot of conflicts with the schedule, so I take over for her for a few shows here and there throughout the summer. I had a few rehearsals, memorized the script, and then was thrown into the first performance so I could find my "show legs" as I went. The first show was a little rocky as I tried to remember all the lines and make all the jokes, but the next two have gone progressively more smoothly, especially the most recent one for a roomful of entertained five-year-olds. I've got another month of the show to run, and my co-actor and I still need to work out some of the comedy bits, but it's going to come together over the course of time. In this case, the performing is the rehearsing, so it's a constantly evolving process as we work our way through the summer.

I've never really been an understudy-slash-replacement before in any significant way, so this is a mostly new experience for me. The lack of rehearsal time was a strange thing to deal with; I'm used to the more expansive timeframe where I get the chance to work out all the bits in the rehearsal process. But instead of "working on scenes," I really only did "full run-throughs," where I had to process all the notes, props, and costumes as I raced through the show. So this idea of working elements out through the production is a little difficult to digest at first, but it's a good thing that I'm up for challenges.

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