Saturday, March 31, 2018

Finnish, First Reading

So. I wrote a play, and here we are, me between two talented theatre people who apparently liked the script enough to want to help out, and in front of a few friends who were curious enough to come along to the cafe to hear the thing. I was only reading because the guy organised to read couldn't make it and I had no time to find someone else. Was I nervous? I've never read a damned thing of mine in public, so yes, I was a little bit nervous, especially as I've seen and reviewed the stage performances of the two people either side of me, and as performers, they are a little bit awesome. Pretty fucking awesome, actually.

It was quite a strange experience. The two words I kept repeating as my mantra when writing were Personal, Universal.

Meaning that I want it to feel so very personal, which it is. But I want it to have universal appeal, which I think it does. There is much truth and honesty in the subject matter, but also some fiction. It's three dialogues between three people, none of which ever happened. The essence though, the essence of the dialogues, is so very real.

It was strange that I ended up doing the reading. I know I wasn't of the calibre of Dayna and Steph, but I think I did okay. There was a funny moment for me... my character reads a very short story to another character, and I was so focused on the lines I was reading at the moment that I forgot about this part. This short story, Love You, See You Soon, it always fucks with me emotionally. Oh no, I thought, this story is coming up...

My character got to the story, and he let go. I let go. I read one of my most emotional short stories to a small audience with enough feeling to bring tears to the eyes of some of those listening, but without tearing up myself. I don't know what happened there, but I was relieved. A little bit of magic happened.

What happens next with the play? I don't know. I've entered it into a thing and it would be nice if it won that thing, but I have to be realistic and think about what to do if it doesn't do well in the thing.

Yesterday morning I woke up anxious and depressed and thought fuck it, we did the reading and that was fun, I'm done with this play. Then I watched the recording a friend had made of it, and I was back. In the recording, there was more laughter than I remembered, because I was focused on the reading. I think the drama works too. Watching Steph when she was not reading, her face and her giggles were like a barometer of what was going on in the play.

I don't know what happens next. Other than I know I have to start writing the next play.



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