Working with a director that asks me to use my own personal past pains for a character is something I have often advised my students NOT to do. However, being in the situation myself it is not that easy to NOT do it.
The director wants me to associate myself with the character as much as possible. In the past I would have run from this but as I am working on my process where the whole point of is to know how to get out I have to do it.
Easy to get out of a character your don’t align with….but trickier to do it with one that bleeds into your own. From the start, willingly…not by chance…but by choice…this is something I have not wanted to do again. Claiming this work is dangerous…but if I have healed my stories…it shouldn’t be…it should be skillful and clear…the path in and most importantly the path OUT.
My SURF process is to both allow yourself to go into and then get out of a character, even if that character is your PAST self. IF- my past pains are healed…I know they are not current. I know that in my heart. I should and will be fine…THIS IS THAT TEST
I have been miserable for days. I have even thought to let go of the play. Walk away. Having been in rehearsal for several weeks. I was thinking NO. THis is not good for my soul. Look how sad I am….understanding her.
And then I thought of a MASTER dance class I was in and at the end when the entire class was putting the dance together…the last five minutes of the entire 2 hour class. I sat down. I bowed out. I was chicken and the teacher pointed it out to the whole group by celebrating those that didn’t sit. Those that dared to follow through till the end.
It was a subtle comment he made but it was pointed and it was felt. An arrow hit the mark. NOTE TO SELF… Dancing with a master company is ballsy- enough I was definitely taking the easy way less embarrassing way out by sitting down.
And so the idea of NOT doing this play because it is going to KICK MY ASS. it is going to show all my cards, it is dangerous. Hell…during rehearsal I was in a room with a guy who tested positive for COVID…this shit is SCARY…I want to run…I am sad and a mess and the idea that I am understanding TRUMP and MELANIA..is even MORE scary.
The idea that I am having conversations with my family about politics and I don’t have a side…the fact that MY opinion on all of this..even the book I spent the past 8 years writing is all being challenged…SCARES the hell out of me.
If I don;t do this show…A direct challenge to my work…it is like NOT wanting a deal on SHark Tank…backing out in a way.
I can see the pattern…get right to the finish line and stop to tie my shoe…looks legit but it is totally NOT FOLLOWING THROUGH.. totally a chicken move
I am not going to back down or back into this…I am going to go full speed ahead….
I know that my relationships with my family are healed…I am living proof here in their home…I know I am aware of where I am able to remember the past and where I can let it go.
I can totally tap into my pain…and then with very clear and defined music and method…get myself out. THAT IS WHAT ACTORS DO….
I am able to do this…or I will be..
Something I am implementing is that I want people to call me by my name. Hearing the name SUSIE is very important for me…it reminds me of who I am ..
I can so easily forget….