All My World's a Stage

There was a moment last Summer during my time in Hull with National Youth Music Theatre where I found myself lying on a stage with the rest of the 25 cast members pretending to be a blade of grass. The musical number was called 'Work' and described the lives of the hired workers in the fields. After some rather convincing grass swaying we had to lie still as if the workers had gone to sleep whilst another scene continued at the back of the stage. At this point in the show I was lying on my back facing the ceiling. I remember looking up into the roof of the theatre, at the set, at the ropes, at the lights, I remember the music fading slightly in the background as my fellow actors' dialogue rang above it. I remember inhaling the sweet, musty, sweaty smell of backstage, I remember gently pressing my fingers into the splintered wood of the stage and being overwhelmed by a sense of euphoria, a completeness and a peace such as I have never experienced. The theatre is my life, the true expression of myself and my character. I love the sense of community, I cherish the moments of teamwork and selflessness and I am so grateful for the outlet it provides, for the opportunity to release my emotional tension in an exaggerated yet structured setting.

I haven't been part of a show for over a year now and when I was up at Edinburgh festival last weekend I realised that something inside me had died. As I sat in the audience and watched performance after performance, when I saw the curtain-call, noticed the waythe cast responded to each other I felt so frustrated and upset. I'm not interested in fame or personal glory, I just want to perform. I want to nestle myself within the four walls of the theatre, blinded by lights and surrounded by beautiful music. I miss singing, like REALLY singing. I miss the momentum and impact of collective singing. Whilst at the fringe I met up with some of my friends from my old drama school and they challenged me about my lack of performances this year. Though they understood that I wanted to concentrate on school work they were curious about my future plans and wanted to make sure that I hadn't given up on theatre altogether. I guess this sabbatical from the stage has just made me even more passionate about the whole thing, I'm already planning to go show crazy at university! The theatre is one of the only places where I feel a sense of belonging and I can never deny myself performing opportunities again. I've restocked my spotify musical playlist, I've been researching monologues and booking tickets for more shows. I'm getting myself back on track, back on the circuit and back on the stage :-)

1 comment :

  1. This was lovely to read and I'm very glad you're going to be doing lots more performy things- when you do, let me know where you'll be doing them and when and i'll be there heckling from the back :)