The Agony & the Ecstacy (of waiting for the cast list)

Four whole days to wait for the cast list! Evil, I tell you, evil.

Even in high school, the cast list went up the morning after the second day of auditions. There were usually a couple of casualties as kids stormed the announcement board (mostly tramplings, but I think once a fist fight broke out over a disagreement on one of the director’s choices). Somehow, my eyes were always drawn like magnets to my name, if it was there. If it was not, I would stand there and stare at the list for an inexcusable length of time, sure I’d see my name if only I looked a little harder. A good elbow to the kidney from someone shoving in from behind is the sort of thing it took to break me away.

But four whole days they asked me to wait, and then I didn’t know if there’d be a list or if I’d get a call or if there’d be some sort of general announcement at the getting-to-know-you meeting on Thursday that I can’t go to anyway…

So as I mentioned in my last post, I have to work in the same office with one of the directors. I still hadn’t decided on my strategy for handling that temptation on Monday afternoon when she walked up to me and said, “Le sigh!”

“Oh no!” I gasped. “You weren’t supposed to see that yet!”

Yes yes. I know. Don’t put something on the internet if you don’t want people to see it. But I had no reason to expect Sarah to go looking at my blog! It was my tattle-tale mother-in-law who told her about it. I had to immediately run upstairs to re-read what I’d posted, and make sure it wasn’t too damning. I do try very hard to make sure my posts won’t offend anyone, and though I do come off as a little crazy some days, I think it was okay.

Once again, and fortunately, Sarah thought I was funny. Whew.

But did she leak any information? Did she take my silent hint that I would reeeeally love her to spill a few details? Nope.

But since she now knew what I was up to, I developed a strategy: I would sigh and give her sad eyes every time I walked by her desk. The first time, I sighed so loudly I think I actually startled her. I also enlisted Anne’s help with this. Did it work? Nope. Nothing. She smiled at us and kept right on working. Curses.

Later I explained to Dustin that I was giving Sarah a new nickname, Sarah The Impervious. Even when she talked to me about my blog, there was nothing in the conversation that gave even the slightest hint away. No half smile that said “I have a secret I think you’re gonna like!” No shiftiness in her eyes that said “We’re so not giving you the part, and I’m just putting off having to disappoint you.” Nothing. She’s so good!

Tuesday I came up with a new strategy to try and shake out the information. I spent some time in the kitchen having a loud discussion about cutting all my hair off. I was sure she could overhear me, but maybe she wasn’t listening. She certainly didn’t come barging into the kitchen to say “No! You need to leave your hair long!” (Obviously I didn’t follow through on my threat anyway. Maybe she knew that. Oh man is she good!) Though I guess, on the other hand, she also didn’t say “How terribly cute you’d look with a bald head, so by all means, get it chopped off!”

Then later in the day, as we were walking over to a mixer down the street, I pointed out that I wouldn’t be able to attend the getting-to-know-you meeting on Thursday. I didn’t expect that ploy to jar any information loose right away, but thought it might butter her up for when I went grovelling on Thursday morning. Her expression of disappointment that I couldn’t come was completely sincere and yet completely devoid of any sort of intonation that would suggest that my presence – as the future lead – would be terribly missed, or that my presence – as the nanny assigned to keep track of the kids backstage – was completely inconsequential anyway.

Impervious! Brilliant! Fascinating!

Because, you see, by today, I’d pretty well decided that I didn’t really want to win this game. I was pretty sure that if I came right over and asked, she’d tell me, and that would be so anticlimactic. It’s like the week before you go on vacation, you get to look forward to it and plan for it and that’s nearly as good as the vacation itself. Getting on the plane is great, but there’s something so nice about waiting for that moment to arrive. It was sort of the same thing.

And I don’t think I’d feel that way if I was hell-bent on getting the lead roll. If that was all that would make me happy, I’d probably be worried sick, and instead of playing games with Sarah (which she probably didn’t even notice I was doing), I’d have resorted to grovelling before noon on Monday.

And so, when this evening after barely surviving Archaeology After School Program with a bunch of wily 7-year-olds, she asked if I wanted to know, of course I said yes. If she was asking, she was obviously ready to tell. I hadn’t done anything in my campaigning to twist her arm (I hope!)

With the hemming and hawing that accompanies giving bad news, she told me I would not be the lead.

Sure, I’m disappointed. It would have been fun. But it would have been a lot of work, and this way the whole event will be so much more laid back for me.

So it’s not such bad news at all. I hope she believed me when I told her that. Anne and I really will have a riot being gossippy townspeople together, and I can’t wait to see what the rest of the cast looks like. I don’t envy Sarah and Dave the job of putting it together, and I seriously applaud them for being willing to undertake this whole show. Bravo! When Anne and I aren’t busy misbehaving, I happily volunteer us to help out in any way they might need. Except for babysitting the munchkins backstage. I just volunteer Anne for that. *whistle*

I want costumes like these!! Do you see their hats? Where can I get a hat like that?
I want costumes like these!! Do you see their hats? Where can I get a hat like that?

Oh, and I’ve been helpfully thinking up suggestions for next year’s musical, since being a Pick-a-Little Lady this year obviously means I have another shot at getting a lead role next year, and it might as well be in one of my many favorite shows instead of one I barely know anything about. So without further ado, I present for you a list of plays you could direct next year, and the part I think you should give me. 😀

Into The Woods (I wanna be the Witch! But I’d settle for Cinderella, the Baker’s Wife, Red Riding Hood, Rapunzel… Look at what a great show that would be! Lots of parts! And I have something to make up for after flubbing my college audition… And this has the bonus of being an awesome community theater play. I mean… lots of parts, and a family-friendly story. The music could be tricky, but eh… we could do it. 😀 )

Les Miserables (Shh, this is my fantasy, I can dream big if I want. I should be Fantine in this play, though I’d also settle (haha, “settle”) for Eponine or Cosette. I don’t think I have the oomph to pull of Mme. Thenardier,  but she’d be fun too. Lots of parts in this one too!)

Beauty & the Beast (speaking of dreaming big… I could so be Belle. Costumes might be a challenge…)

Joseph & the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat (The Narrator, and why not? So high Es aren’t my specialty, but I’m sure someone could accomodate for that. Might be a little male-part heavy for our crowd, though.)

Camelot (One of my favorite shows. Though I actually like the song about Guinevere better than most of the songs she sings…)

This list, by the way, is completely different from the list of shows I think would actually be good for our community theater group – this list is all about me. 😉 I’ll drum up a copy of the other list some day when someone is actually interested in thinking about another play. For now, I suspect everyone’s hands will be full with the one at hand.

I can’t wait to get started!

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