This week I received my very first acting paycheck. Until recently, everything I’ve done has been purely for the love of it (well, and to gain experience to boost my acting CV, along with trying to improve as an actor). However, I recently had my first professional acting gig with Thursday’s Child, a new play by local playwright Clare Campbell-Collins.
The all-important envelope
Earlier this week, the cast (three in total), director and playwright got together for a little catch-up, and the chance to give Clare any feedback about the version of the play as it was performed. It was lovely to see everyone again, if not slightly surreal. Since the last performance back in March, my character Anne has been floating around somewhere over my shoulder, still hanging on and not sure what to do with herself. Seeing everyone from the play brought everything back, and suddenly I felt Anne stop hovering and seat herself comfortably but firmly on my shoulder, watching everyone and waiting for her turn to come back into the action. There are plans to bring the play back for a few more performances in the summer, which pleased her very much. Continue reading
Thursday’s Child poster
This time last week I was prancing about dressed as Anne Boleyn. Today I’ve just got off a coach after an eight-hour journey down from Yorkshire. It’s been a surreal week, drifting around in a creative mist, avoiding the daily grind of Real Life.
After the manic pace of the past month, leading up to the performance of Thursday’s Child, I decided a little break was in order, so headed up north to stay with my family over Easter. Several days of studying for a journalism exam and working on audition material with the lambs bleating outside my window and the snow-dappled fields beyond was a perfect time-out. Of course, I was still studying, but I don’t really do proper time-outs. Continue reading
It’s now just one day to the first performance. As the moment approaches, I feel a strange sense of
The Thursday’s Child cast
something momentous drawing near. This isn’t like any play I’ve done before. It’s not like a well-worn Shakespeare, where there’s been a hundred Portias live and breathe before yours. Anne is mine, and I am hers. I am her vessel, her conduit off the page and to the real world. I give her a human voice, allow her to move and walk and stand there for all to see.
I imagine the others must be feeling the same. This will be the first time these characters have ever lived off the page for an audience. The excitement is hanging on the air, an almost tangible electricity that surrounds me as I go about my daily routine. Continue reading
Back in September I wrote about the read-through of a new play, Thursday’s Child. Written by local writer Clare Campbell-Collins, the play follows Anne, a young woman trying to rebuild her life through helping others, because for the moment, she just can’t help herself.
We’re about a third of the way into rehearsals and have just gone off-book for the first few scenes. Although this stage always terrifies many actors, it’s surprising how much you do already know once someone takes the script away. I can learn through repetition but I find learning through doing much more effective, so the fact that we’ve read through, marked and physically acted the first two scenes quite a few times has really helped. It’s like it’s etched into your memory a bit each time you do the scene.