I hung out at the Palo Alto Community Theater throughout my high school years. Like so much of my life then, I was pulled into being involved by my best friend, S. I only was onstage one, or maybe twice. The first time, I was a Bobby-soxer in the opening number of Guys & Dolls. I may have had a bit part in Rosencrantz and Guildenstern Are Dead. I was very shy, and prone to stage fright. My preference was to be in the chorus, or, even better, off stage, doing lighting or helping with props. The best part of being involved in theater was the parties! Even today, hearing anything by the Bee Gees or the Doobie Brothers reminds me of the feeling of being at a Theaterworks party.
When I left Palo Alto go to college, I decided I was going to embrace the theater more fully, and i tried out for the production of Jean Paul Sartre’s Les Mouches. I was in the chorus. And I had to drop out because I got very sick during that first year. So, that ended my short – lived stage career.
Since then, I have only performed as part of a choir, and me recently, twice a year singing solo for my voice teacher’s rep classes and recitals.
Until now… For the first time, I am participating in my Baltimore synagogue’s Purim spiel! I think this is going to be really good for me. I’m hesitant to make a fool of myself, and I’m not especially good at play (as in acting like a kid). Purim is all about letting loose, and being silly. I’ll really have to plan a costume, but only for the spiel, but also for the rest of the festivities. I’ve never really given the costume thing much thought.
So, i’m looking forward to extending myself in a new way. Stretching some disused “play” muscles. Allowing myself to be silly.
Who says an old dog can’t learn new tricks?