I don't really know what drove me into joining the amateur theatre group of my city.
Or maybe I do know.
I missed the stage.
Till then, my experience was mainly musical, in choirs and rock/soul bands as a singer.
We started off with lessons. Acting, improvising, dancing, history, speech training...
The thratre gave me much more. it gave me friends. Lots of different characters. Whatever their luggage, they reserved their big smiles for these precious weekends they "sacrificed" to be in the classes. My first surprise was the lack of ego. Εgo is a big problem among artists. I had bitter experiences in the past by overblown egoes. This crowd was here to learn, to laugh, to make friends, to have fun.
It was a big surprise - and a secret longing - when we learned we would be in an actual play. To rehearse for a real performance. I ended up in two plays. A theatre play and a dancing performance...
We are going on stage in a couple of months. The pressure is already building. The rehearsals are a daily routine. We have to remember the steps, to express the feelings... There is a lot of tension and a lot of sweet moments. There are fights and tears. There are bravos' and congratulations. There is encouragement and tiredness and shouting. There are smiles.
There are precious moments in the process. Diving into the theatres' underground wardrobe/cloakroom to find the right garments for our performance. The smiles and teasing. Touching the fabrics. Funny hats, serious hats, striped ties and extravagant garments.
It is the proccess that matters most to me. We have a fight during the rehearsal and then we go and have a beer toghether, to fight off the exhaustion and cool off the tension.
Both our directors are charismatic people.
Our dance teacher/director has a unique way of pulling off our energies. 3-4-10 hours non stop she encourages us and yells at us. She is trying to bring out the best from us. She has the whole play in her head. She choreographed a half hour performance. Such a gifted choreographer/writer... At the end of the day it's her smile that counts.
Our second director is more of a chaos organizer. He takes chaos and he makes it into a performance. Very young but very passionate. Younger than me. There are times I want to smack him in the face. He has taught me to be patient with people. At the end of the day, the performance is starting to look really cool, whatever my aesthetic dissent. My ego was checked. I had to step back and conform for the sake of everone. Our play is a comedy and it is turning out to be hilarious.
Last but not least, my fellow players, my peers. There are no words to express my gratitude to these amazing people. Everyone was casted so perfectly for their corresponding roles. Learning their parts... all these pages and pages of script... I always found it difficult to learn the words for a song, let alone a page of script! I was lucky not to have much script in this play... And I have deep admiration for all the others who have all these words to learn!
I am enjoying the proccess so much, I do not want it to finish. The final performances are going to mark the end of these tense rehearsals. I hope they never come. This is one of the best journeys of my life. It's not the destination that matters. It's the love and hugs of the journey.
Thank you everyone, I bow before your greatness.