Sunday, February 24, 2008

My adventures in acting

I’ve heard it said that an acting teacher knows what part is right the moment she meets you. Which is why I was a little afraid when my acting for beginners teacher chose a monologue delivered by a manic-depressive character trying to impress a blind date for me to work on for the entire length of the class. Don’t over think this. Don’t think about this at all. Still, I can’t help but think because that is what I do. Do I seem manic? That is the exact line that Jasmine delivered at the beginning of her date, the line that the class told me I delivered so well. At the risk of seeming crazy, I’m going to answer my own question, in a word: sometimes. It’s been hard not to see parallels between me and my precious character Jasmine from Sweethearts, and that’s exactly what one wants, right? Of course right.

Never having been on an actual date, I always end up picturing what my first will be and if it will be anything like Jasmine’s Jasmine is nervous, really. That’s what it all boils down to. She’s so nervous having just come out of the psychiatric wing of a very different VA hospital, she talks to fill space. And in the end ends up convincing her date, and herself that she’s not actually ready to date, let a lone have an actual relationship. I feel sorry for her actually, and it’s hard not to turn that pity on myself.

But really, I’m curious as to why this woman, acting teacher, a woman I’ve known all of under 30 minutes, chose me for this role. True, I was the only single woman under 30 in the class. True, I probably seemed more than anxious on our first day of class when I had to introduce myself. But manic? Not a far cry. She probably thought.

“Do you smoke?” she asked curiously.
“No.” I said firmly. A lot of things I might have been, but a smoker I definitely was not.
“This will be perfect!” She exclaimed as she took a piece of paper from her notebook and handed it to me.
I read the first line to myself.
“Do you have light?”

You’ve got to be kidding me.

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