Saturday, June 5, 2010

Cause You Gotta Have Faith...

Didn't I say things were getting better, looking up, opening windows blah blah blah... well they certainly are and the past few days have been a testament to that. As many of my close friends (all of you wonderful people on Facebook) already know, I have spent the last two days in little ole' Odessa, TX being a part of the first ever public reading of my "semi-autobiographical" play: Chronic Brevity. (Yes, the blog is named after the play, so you can guess what the play is about) :)
I was contacted on Tuesday morning by the artistic director of The Old Globe of the southwest saying that they had selected my script for their New Plays/New Players festival and if I could come out on short notice. And of course, without hesitation I booked a flight, and a hotel and by Thursday afternoon at 1pm I was in Odessa freaking Texas! Lupe came with me of course and we went to the rehearsal Thursday night, ate wonderful food at a restaurant called Carino's ($2 Sangrias!!), saw Stonehenge replica statues on Friday day, had horrible food at a fast food joint called Taco Villa (Never go there!), I worked out to blow off some nervous energy and then we went to the reading Friday night. It was an AMAZING experience to see and hear other people reading MY words out loud, with emotion, enthusiasm and energy. Nothing compares!

And may I say that the actors chosen to read the play were PHENOMENAL, and if you know me, you know that's a HUGE compliment because I'm extremely particular about whom and praise, especially when it comes to acting. So THANK YOU, THANK YOU, THANK YOU Old Globe of the southwest for really respecting my work and taking a risk! (And yes, it is called the Old Globe because it is a replica of the real Old Glob Theatre in England, and this one is just as beautiful...and OH the ACOUSTICS!)

Ok, so enough bragging and vomit inducing joy, I just want to share that I truly believe this play will accomplish great things in the future. I hope to bring awareness, understanding, compassion and hope to the subject of Scleroderma and it's patients, family members of patients and the general public. I received many compliments last night, great feedback on how to improve it and I know I touched a few lives because several people came up to me afterwards and began sharing their own stories of illness and affliction.

The past few days will surely be remembered in my heart as an emotional high and in my mind as a true artistic dream finally achieved. The play still has a long way to go, and this will surely not be the only reading of this piece especially now that I know the potential it has and the response that it received. I must go forward with this play if not for myself, but for all those who are too afraid to speak up and speak out, and because like I told my wonderful hubby the other night: "It's sad that erectile dysfunction gets more press than scleroderma." I hope to change that in my own small way.

Below is a super short video clip of last night's reading and the actual monologue. (If you want more, you'll have to come to the next reading or wait for it on Broadway!)- Hey a girl can dream can't she? :)


(There is only a hospital bed on stage which is not lit at this point. Spotlight only on Lara who is standing CS, looking around the room she begins. Talking to audience.)

Lara: Brevity is the soul of wit. Profound huh? Yeah, too bad I didn’t think of it. Well, although I’m not very witty, I will try to be brief. Vivian Bearing died of Stage four ovarian cancer. Vivian and I are alike in a lot of ways. We like literature, we are both teachers, we are both characters in a play and I, like Vivian am in stage four, not of ovarian cancer but of something else altogether. However, unlike Vivian, I will not die.

So, ok, here we go: Stage 1, Chronic. Chronic means it is ALWAYS there and it’s ALWAYS going to be there. Stage 2: Auto-immune, auto-immune means my immune system is raping me, simple enough right? Stage 3: Fatigue, fatigue is what happens next.

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