My Bag of Lemons Rotted…

imagesThey say when life hands you lemons make the situation better by making lemonade. They don’t tell you what to do when the lemons begin to rot because you are taking care of life and time just. will. not. stop!

My Dear Gentle Reader, this summer was a hard few months to get through. I have had ongoing issues with my #survivaljob that makes me want to swat “decision makers” (I use that term Über sarcastically) with a rolled up newspaper in their face. I know, I know.  Violence never helps solve anything.

Then we had a visit from the cancer fairy. Luckily, we had medicine men and women fix THAT issue. Then there was the recovery which took the longest time and made me worry. That was all I did. Night and day. Day and night. Sometimes I still do. That whole mess floored me.  I wasn’t the patient but the caretaker with TONS of help from my mother in law and our incredible, wonderful friends. That level of stress really cuts a big gaping hole in the sails and just left me feeling like all I could do was hope the waves would take me close to land.

I have also had a number of deaths in the family that left me numb and again, unable to process. Just last week, I lost another cousin. I worry about the mental health of my father who seems to be getting a little more and more forgetful. I worry about the health of my mother, who takes care of my father on top of her job and most of the rest of my siblings. It gets SO overwhelming that I just turn it all off. Everything.

When I thought about writing a post, I would sit at a blank screen and just watch the cursor blink. I didn’t even read plays or work on my own show. I kind of abandoned Facebook and Twitter. Only occasionally did I make a post on Instagram.

I think that the worst is over. I still haven’t recovered that missing magic from March.  I don’t know if you recall that post, Dear Reader. That particular event was that I totalled my car in an accident and rolled it down a small hill. We walked away with some cuts and bruises and soreness, but otherwise intact. I don’t think I have still processed that because I still think about what I could have done to prevent it, and then I get worked up and anxious about it all over again. I know I have definitely lost even more magic.

I know that I don’t feel the same emotionally or physically.  I just feel a little “off” but hoping it is just cobwebs creeping into places I haven’t used in the last 10 months.

Things are looking up though! In 9 days, I have auditions for Smokey Joe’s Cafe, and two weeks after that, I begin rehearsals for my return to the stage.  I will be working on a production of the “Making of the Star Wars Christmas Special” at Dragon Theatre Productions. We open in December for one lone weekend.

I have my fingers crossed that the magic will find me again. I am officially excited for theatre to come back into my life as something more than just an observer. I need it.

If you have read this far, Kind Reader, I thank you for letting me bend your ear/eyes for a moment or two.

May the magic bring all your dreams to life.

Until next time, Gentle Reader…

It’s a bit premature, but…

I TOTALLY love the cast of Bless Me, Ultima!

Boy, oh boy, Saturday was a blast.  The day started with a welcome by our director Ms. Elisa, then followed by the exciting news that Bless Me has actually just wrapped up filming as a feature length movie!!

Next up were the sound, lighting, and set design presentations.  The set designer said that the stage will be raked, or slanted.  The plan is to keep the show minimalistic to keep the momentum as swift as possible.  There are mini-scenes inside larger scenes, and if there was a need to pause, even the slightest one, for each shift, we could be in trouble of losing the audience’s attention.  In keeping with the less is best idea, the raked stage is supposed to have images of the landscape on it.  I am curious how this will work.  Will the images be projected from behind the platform, or from above? If it’s from above, isn’t the image going to show up on the actors as well?  We shall see…

One element I am really impressed with is that there will be a massive attempt at using as much live music as possible.  Hooray!  I can’t seem to do a show without having to sing.  Haha! Even in the last play I did with Teatro, Hero,  I sang the line: High School…High School Musical 2!

After the presentations, we all introduced ourselves to each other. We took a short break, and then dug into the script.  Things have been changed and reassignments were adjusted, and the train began to move forward.  At first as we began to read, things felt a little tense to me. Not for any particular reason.  It could be that sometimes it’s uncomfortable to read aloud.  It could be that the cold in the room was a little distracting.  It could be that some of the people were missing parts of their script.  After we got about six scenes into the read thru, Elisa stopped us and asked about the themes that we’d come across so far and how we feel about them.  People brought up religion, good v. evil, and duality just to name a few.

Then it got a little weird.  I understand what was meant, but I think it’s a bit trivial as far as the issue went.  What happened was someone said they didn’t like the fact that the word “magic” was used to describe the things that Ultima could do.  The reason was that the term “magic”  made them think of pulling a rabbit out of a hat or something along that line,  or that “magic” was only used for evil things.

I am a little torn that there is talk about changing a word that is the supposed school of altering things either by supernatural means or through knowledge of natural laws unacknowledged by science. It goes back as far as alchemy does. Magic was used long before the likes of Harry Houdini and others had began to create tricks and illusions for entertainment.  What I wonder about is was that something that offended the person who purposed the change due to their religious beliefs or was it because it truly reminded her of parlor tricks?  If its the former, isn’t that why we are here to do this play?  If it’s the latter, do we really have the power to change the words of the playwright if a wording change diminishes the power of the script?

It also made me wonder why no one had problems says “miracles.” Aren’t those just magic?  The difference that was told to me was that one is religious based while the other was more of a hedonist term.  WTH?  This lead me to believe that this group was more religious that I thought and that’s where the whole Magic debate stemmed from.  That makes me a little sad.

When I read the book, what I came away with is that you should question religion.  It’s not something that is only contained inside of four walls.  There’s a lot of back and forth for the main character, Tony, about the belief in the churchy god and the energy that’s everywhere that just is.  That church god and cosmic energy are one and the same.  It’s okay if you wanna believe in both! Now, I don’t mind either way what anyone believes.  That’s what makes the word go ’round.  However, with the church being all greedy and stuff, it acts like a child.  If you were to compare the two, Magic is much older than most religions.  Just sayin’! Churches say, you can’t do this or that.  You can only worship in a confined space surrounded by others as witnesses to make sure you are doing what you’re supposed to.  With the energy, there’s just possibility.  There’s no one saying you can’t.  You must follow your own moral compass and decide if what you do will hurt someone else.

It was a great conversation, sometimes it did go off track, but THIS is why I love working with Teatro Vision.  I don’t get anything like it with WVLO, or Sunnyvale Players, and Saratoga Drama Group.  The people in this cast are all fun loving and easy to laugh with.  It’s going to be a happy, happy experience working with these folks.

Also, for those of you interested in another fellow theatre blogger, my cast mate Jess is the author behind Theatreg33k.blogspot.com.  I am thinking a podcast with her will be a blast!  I’ll keep you posted on that.