Auditions Tonight...No Experience Necessary (Part 2)
I got the PART! I tried to act nonchalant, like it meant something, but not like it was so important that if I hadn’t gotten the part, I couldn’t have pulled myself together. Let’s face it—for an amateur like me, someone who has never been in a play before, the simple fact that I had been cast was big news.
I looked forward to our first rehearsal with enthusiasm and some trepidation. Feeling the pressure of knowing it was do or die, I faced the reality that I had a lot to learn. Performing would be fun, but learning would prove invaluable.
Where does a rookie begin?
I showed up to my first rehearsal and listened. I didn’t know what questions to ask, so I didn’t ask any. I listened to the director and processed everything he told the cast. We then did a read-through of the script simply to orient ourselves with the story. From there, I took my script home and studied my character.
The rehearsals were weekly from that point, sometimes twice a week. After about two weeks of trying to memorize my lines, I decided to try and recite a few without looking. Difficult. For whatever reason, it was easy to memorize in the quiet of my home, but I froze up with an audience. The director and my fellow actors assured me that in time, and after weeks of rehearsing, it would become old hat.
Where does a busy mom of two find time to learn her lines? Any time I had a few minutes. I carried my script around religiously, determined to memorize my part sooner rather than later. Who knew what could happen at any unannounced moment? Eventually the lines replayed themselves in my mind whenever I couldn’t sleep at night, in the shower, while I washed dishes…just about constantly. And our director was right. I soon began leaving my script at home for rehearsals and found that my lines became second nature. Learning quickly freed me up to concentrate on learning how to be my character. Eventually, the significance of our time together became clear. This casual, intimate time between friends was preparation for us to bring a message of hope to a world in need of a Savior.
When a person is determined yet unqualified, I think he works harder. That was me. While many of the cast members hadn’t acted since high school (okay, we’re not as young as you think), I had never acted. But I wanted to. That kept me going.
The actual performance was, in a word, exhilarating. With anticipation and nerves in overdrive, we took to the stage and gave a close to flawless performance. The weeks of rehearsing culminated in laughter, tears, and many appreciated accolades. Moments before we took the stage, the butterflies fluttered relentlessly in my stomach. I focused on the other actors and put out of my mind the fact that my friends and family were watching. We had a message for the masses and we certainly prayed that our efforts would strike a chord in their hearts. After all, it’s not about how well we act or who steals the show. In this line of drama, it’s whether or not hearts are changed.
I know mine will never be the same