I've had leads before, but not like this. Most shows I'm in, I have whole scenes to take pictures, schmooze backstage, go potty or whatever. This one, not so much. There are a lot of scenes in which I am not, but they are so short, I barely have time to change to the next costume.
So, of course, I've been petrified.
Never mind that the character is just so awesome, I'm stretched to the max to convey that. I wish Maude really existed, and I wish I had her to phone (though she doesn't use the phone much). She can ungrumble me in the blink of an eye! Of course, now she does exist, inside my head, and shutting her up may prove more of a problem than calling her up.
It has been awkward, at times, thinking about her suicide, and then considering Jim's. Of course, there really is no connection, as hers came from an entirely different place than his. Still, the fact that I can do this is a testament to how far I have come down this road of survival.
The show is rocking along, thanks to a wonderful cast and crew. Every actor and techie is spot on and tight.
At the first night of auditions, I was really upset that no one showed up to audition for Harold. I began to think that it was me. Bad breath...body odour...snarky personality...troubles with lines...did nobody want to work with me? On day two, Joshua Landry Dews walked in and is just perfect. I am also working with some old friends I've never been on stage with, in spite of knowing them for years...Russ Jernigan and Steve Menke. A treat. And then there are friends with whom I have worked many times...B J Machalicek and Richard Dodwell. There are a couple of people who have done a couple of shows at Sam Bass, Meredith Nelson as the gardener and Michelle Foxworthy as the maid. The three dates, Vanessa Harkins, Asia Killars and Lindsay Snyder have never been with us before, and I sure hope they come back.
This is turning out to be one of the best theater experiences ever, so muchisimas gracias to Frank Benge for casting me.
There are still seven shows, with some seats available for each one. Please come and see it, because you will never hear the end of it if you don't!