Acting 101.1

3 Sep

Yesterday was The First Day of School. Again. This semester, I’m taking second year piano and acting fundamentals. I don’t know what I was thinking with the acting class, but I’ve been wanting to try it.

As a child, my friend and I were in an after-school acting program. It wasn’t an intense system; I think we were all there not to really learn to act, but so that drug dealers wouldn’t tempt us with their worldly ways. All the kids performed different Aesop’s Fables and I hardly remember any of it, except for having to prune my bird feathers and scream behind a wall because the lion was eating me.

I never acted again after that program.
Well, except for this:

Nowadays, I’ve spoken off and on with my hubbie about extra work (for extra money). I’ve filled out a form for Central Casting, but have yet to make the trip out there to be “hair and makeup ready” for an interview. Besides that, we agreed that I should take a class at the community college to see if I even LIKE this idea of being in front of an audience, pretending to do… um, things.

Last night was interesting. And, I really like the instructor. I’m pretty excited about what we’ll be doing, albeit not comfortable with the whole idea. I’m fairly nervous when attention is brought upon me; it’s as if a tidal pool suddenly appears underneath my arms. Even without the attention, I sweat enough that I bought Clinical Protection Strength antiperspirant because I DRIP MORE THAN MY MALE COUNTERPART. That’s a sad tale to tell.

Do you think acting classes help sweat glands?

The class started off with everyone having to stand in front of the students, state their name and something good they’ve done. Everyone was then required to applause and cheer and obnoxiously root for your deed. In the beginning, students fidgeted and “fake bowed,” making silly gestures and walking off before the applause ended. The exercise was explained – accept the applause. Accept yourself and acknowledge your worthy talent. Learn to be (and look) comfortable with all eyes on your oily face and dirty shirt.

I went up, stated my name, and that I fostered animals from shelters.

YAY!
WOOHOO!
ALRIGHT!
WAY TO GO!
CLAP CLAP!

I thought I did well. Then, as I sat down, the professor said that it’s also not okay to be the other extreme and completely zone out. I replied with a laugh and said, “that’s what I do.”

Which is true. I can zone out and be “not there” and it may look like I’m accepting your attention and applause, but really, I’m counting shoelaces or staring past the walls of the room. I think I learned this from the whole cancer shmancer period of my life.

I’ll be glad to let that part of me go.

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