Friday, September 09, 2005

Opening Night

At last we opened! By all accounts I should have been a nervous wreck last night. After all, my last opening night was more than two years ago. Plus the last time I did a play that required naturalistic acting (as opposed to, say, stylized or affected acting) was in 1987. Added to that was the god-awful rehearsal we had last Friday, when our director stopped the play and gave us all a tongue-lashing. But maybe it was the berating we got that made me determined to prove my director wrong. Maybe it was the acting challenge that got me fired up. Maybe it was the special Bayan-Bayanan mix in my iPod (I gathered all these somber mood music) which strangely made me relaxed instead of hyper. Whatever it was it worked. My performance last night wasn’t the best—I had a great run a few rehearsals earlier, when I felt that I nailed it close to perfect—but it wasn’t bad either. At the very least my performance impressed the non-discerning viewers in the audience.

Better yet, the reaction of the jam-packed audience was rapturous, despite some glitches. The worst that happened last night was one of the actors forgot he was needed in the next scene, so he was backstage changing pants when the cue for his entrance came on. In less than 10 seconds he was able to get into his pants, put on his shoes, slip on his jacket and enter stage right. But those were the longest few seconds for all of us, especially for the stage manager.

After our curtain call, all of us in the cast and crew simultaneously burst into hugging and screaming in the dressing room. It was quite a euphoric feeling, to be able to get through the whole play with everyone pulling off a generally good job.

The play, if done well, is a very moving piece despite its somber tone. It is something one rarely sees nowadays—no major histrionics, no big emotional outbursts or scenes. Thank god we were able to pull off the delicate balancing act needed by this play. Of course I’m just repeating the feedback given by our crew who saw the whole performance; I have yet to see the play in full. Today I’ll watch my alternate so I can also have an idea what the play’s impact is on the audience.

Funny thing is after opening night, I felt that my happy Bayan-Bayanan days are slowly drawing to a close. Given the situation in my workplace, it may be quite some time before I step onstage again. I might as well make the most and enjoy the rest of the ride.

Broke a leg* last night and it felt good.

* Break a leg – The superstitious belief is that telling an actor “good luck” actually tempts Fate to do the opposite. So in the theatrical equivalent of reverse psychology, actors would wish one another to “break a leg” to ensure that nothing bad happens to their performance.

7 Comments:

Blogger nam said...

im gonna watch ur play. san ba bibili ng ticket?

5:01 PM  
Blogger McVie said...

You can buy at the venue. They set up a ticket table/booth at the doorway to the Rizal Mini-Theater an hour before the show.

Just check in my previous episode the dates when I'll be performing. Corny naman kung mapanood mo ang alternate ko, ano? :-)

5:08 PM  
Blogger Leigh said...

Congratulations and hugs!

:-)

12:41 AM  
Blogger Nelson said...

makikicongrats din ako! ;-)

2:13 AM  
Blogger Saint Eroica said...

pardon my ignorance, but what play is this? venue and scheds? thanks!

11:41 AM  
Blogger Saint Eroica said...

pardon me again... i have the info already... read it in your past entry... hehehe... thanks!

11:42 AM  
Blogger Kervin said...

Congrats Joe! Naks, galing ng kaibigan ko!

11:44 AM  

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