• Mama PhD

    Mothers attempting to balance parenthood and academics.


Two Silly Acting Stories

Emotional sorbet.

September 15, 2013

I have been thinking a lot this week about attacks, both the one that occurred 12 years ago and the one that our country is currently contemplating. I find, though, that I don't want to write about any of this. Instead, I want to share 2 experiences I had this week:

1. Several months ago, on a whim, I added "world class screamer" to my online résumé at the Backstage casting website. I did this because it is true—I discovered when playing Mary Warren in a college production of Arthur Miller's "The Crucible" an ability to summon up bloodcurdling cries that made audience members jump out of their seats—and also because I was up for a part in a play about the zombie apocalypse, which I ultimately didn't get, and then I forgot about it.

This week I got a call from a casting agency that had found my résumé, and went in for an audition. When I got there the principals shut the door and said, "We understand you're a world class screamer—show us what you can do."

I responded, "Is the room soundproof?"

One of the casting agents said, "It's soundproof enough, go ahead."

So I let loose, and in less than a minute people were knocking on the door, and then opening it, demanding to know what was going on and whether we were all right.

I don't know yet whether I got the part but I don't remember when I have had so much fun on an audition.

2. My improv/sketch team met last night to discuss the roster for an upcoming performance in a sketch festival, which will be the first time I perform with them. One of the sketches is a spoof of the Disney version of Beauty and the Beast (I play Mrs. Potts). Our Beast is beautifully cast, but his transformation into a conventionally gorgeous prince presented some problems. After some debate about whether one of the women should take the part, I offered, "I actually have a handsome prince living in my apartment." I passed around the pictures on my iPad, and the result is that Ben will play a cameo in the skit—and mother and son will make our sketch debuts on the same night.

Neither of these stories has any special significance — I just thought that you, like me, might enjoy some emotional sorbet at this particular time.


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