Late last year, I had the terrifying pleasure of taking part in my first ever 24 Hour Play-Writing Project!
4 Writers and 4 Directors met up at our performing arts theater (The Laboratory Theater of Florida) and are randomly placed together to work on a screenplay. That the writers had to write overnight and have ready first thing in the morning.
Then, in the early afternoon, the actors (that’s where I came in 🙂 ) come in and are randomly selected for parts in each staged play.
I was chosen to play in ‘The Bird Flew’, which was a humorous play on words play about this epidemic going around that turned folks into actual birds.
Here is a picture of the Director and the Writer of the play. Both very kind, patient, and talented guys!
Again, it had been awhile since I took on the stage, and I needed lots and LOTS of guidance!
The one thing that I remember hearing both of them tell me was to just remember the story that you are telling. And to think of what is happening next. Keeping that in mind actually does help folks!
Then there was stage direction and projecting so that the entire audience could hear us while we were performing. I thought being a voice major would help me out there, but I needed work in that area too.
We were the last group to perform and that alone had my stomach in knots! My character didn’t enter the scene until halfway through the play (thankfully), so I spent that time going over my lines.
And then I finally heard my cue and made my entrance – with 2 medium size suitcases, a long black overcoat on, crutches, and just one shoe on. My character was a black, older,southern belle who witness her best friend turn into a bird. She herself was also infected with the ‘Bird Flew’ but was unaware (until later in the story).
Then it happened. Right before my big monologue piece – my brain went blank and I couldn’t remember my line… I stared at my cast mates apologetically and then out into the bright lights. The one thought I had was that running off stage was not an option. So I went ahead and gave up on remember the parts that I had forgotten and took everyone else’s lead from then on. Surprisingly though I remembered all my stage direction!
After we were finished, the judges tallied up the points throughout and….we won!
WE WON IN BOTH CATEGORIES YA’LL! Best Play and Audience Choice!
In the end, we made it work. I was seriously so happy that we did! And looking back, I am glad that I didn’t back out of doing this project. I learned so much in such a short period of time. Hopefully I’ll get to put some of what I learned to good use this summer.
Let’s see what develops Muse!