It's a beautiful, meaningful thing.
At least stage acting is.
It loses its meaning once you've tried to memorise something over, and over, and over, and over, and over again. And the only thing going through your mind is the piece you're trying to memorise.
Today I performed a monologue, for my school drama class. It was a monologue I wrote.
Our task was to write a monologue that lasted from four to six minutes, and preferably a monologue that had some meaning to us. Mine had every ounce of me put into it.
My school drama teacher said it was perfect, after I changed it from its' original ending. I, being a perfectionist and not being happy with no critique, took it to my extra-curricular drama class and had that teacher look at it.
She looked up from it, and she looked me dead in the eyes and told me it was amazing.
I didn't believe it. Literally, not some airy-fairy "Oh my god, are you serious? I don't believe you just said that!"
But I just didn't believe it.
But there isn't much you can do to improve with no critique.
So I memorised it, and decided on costuming, lighting, and props.
And we've had SO bloody long to work on it. I am thoroughly sick of it, and I bloody hate the thing now, and I don't see any perfection, let alone an ounce of good writing within it. I just wanted it to be over with.
Finally, our times were scheduled. I was to perform it on Friday, the 14th of May.
And then, when I'd packed all my stuff for it, the day I was going to perform it I started vomiting. So I put it off until today, Tuesday the 18th. It was a long four days.
Okay. So imagine I'm sitting in a darkened room. Suddenly, the lights come up behind me, so my face is in shadow and I'm an outline on stage. You can see I'm sitting on a quilt, with a pillow next to me, and a plush toy in my arms. I'm wearing childish summer pyjamas. I begin to speak.
It's dark. So dark at night.
In the day, there are so many colours. Red. Green. Blue. As I say the colours, coloured lights that match them flash up.
I point, and I wave, and I tell people to look. Look at the colours. They're beautiful.
But they don't listen, or they don't hear. The words don't come out.
They look. They nod. They smile. But they don't see.
There's a cloud. They have a cloud.
Or a mist. It blocks out their... understanding
Thoughts. They're so full of them, that they can't see.
They look at me with sympathy. Really, they're the ones missing out.
I don't have to be critical.
I can laugh, and just laugh, I don't have to understand.
I can cry. Just cry.
But sometimes I wish people would just notice me. Me. Not what surrounds me.
Here. I put my fist on my chest... Or here. I put my other fist on the other side of my chest looking confused.
Will people ever stop and talk to me? Rather than glance at me with pity, then keep walking?
People aren't always very fair. Or nice. Don't they know I do not like looks of pity?
To come across something that you don't like that much every day- is it a good thing for a person to experience?
I don't know other peoples thoughts. Perhaps that isn't what they're thinking.
Or maybe they do realise who I am, and what I need. They just choose not to give it.
I need help. But I also need compassion.
I can't help being who I am.
I may not be smarter than everyone else, or as smart as.
I may not get my point across as easily.
Sometimes I might be annoying.
I'm not something wrong, I'm just... different.
Every step of the way, I need guides.
But guides are people.
People I love.
People who love me.
They respect me, cherish me, admire me, and let me know that.
They still can't see.
But they're not blind.
I raise my head to gaze directly at the audience
Think about it. How blind are you?
Not many people know that much. I close my eyes. With each statement, I cast my head farther downward.
Dumb. Whispers. "What's wrong with her? Why does that girl look funny?"
Close your mouths. Open eyes and stare at audience without lifting head up. Don't let that word 'retard' escape.
Imagine throughout the whole piece, light had been building up from the front gradually.
Raise head to look at audience directly. Are you deaf, too?
At this point, the light- almost fully bright at front now, switches back to the outlining me it did at the start of the monologue.
I play a recording of my sister with downsyndrome speaking. "It's dark. So dark at night."
At least, that's how I hoped my monologue would go.
It basically followed the structure I set for it, but I forgot my lines thrice, and had to have a single word prompt.
So my monologue is based on an issue very important to me.
My older sister has down syndrome, and I love her to bits.
I wrote the monologue from her point of view, her thoughts, at least I tried. Of course I incooperated a lot of elements,but I kept it as simple as I could so as not to detract meaning.
I also changed the character- in the character workshops we did, I developed my character to be a 12 year old girl called Iesha, but still with the same disability.
I didn't base it on anyone but my sister, but I got the name- a name I love- from someone I know.
I did the monologue, but I had absolutely no feeling performing it- it was as if, I don't know, I was this shell reading lines and trying to put emotion into it
I got some great comments from Mr. D though, and friends and some not-so-much friends told me that it was great. So I can't have been so bad.
I don't want to ramble too much about it.
So thanks for reading.
I do appreciate it.