I got involved in a wonderful theatre company in North Co Dublin recently. As the children no longer need me 24/7 (although if the ten year old had his way I would never leave the house) I have fallen back to my first loves, reading and theatre.
This group 'Magic Carpet Theatre Company' is amateur but it is run to professional standards with a cracking production team, a wonderful director and a determined and down-to-earth musical director. Everyone involved has a love of and passion for theatre. I walk into rehearsal rooms and I know these people mean business.
We're doing a Panto for Christmas, to be performed in a local community centre which can seat up to 350. Scary thought - to fill 350 seats for six performances - or at least attempt to. The Panto is 'Sleeping Beauty' penned by the marvellous Alan Cash - it rips along with one liners, double entendre and slapstick humour. We have great singers and dancers - they're even letting me sing! In the chorus of course and occasionally I just mime because I know I'll put everyone else off.
We were rehearsing today and I felt so safe, so at home. I wonder why I ever stopped performing? Alright, alright I know there are those who say I'm permanently on stage, but so what? If I feel comfortable being me but acting the mick as someone else who is to say that that is a pain in the butt. You don't have to come to see me! Promise. My poor father especially, he still hasn't forgiven me for making him sit through three and a half hours of Hamlet in 1978. I played Hamlet ( all girls school) so he couldn't even dodge off for a pint when my 'bit' was over!
So there's me - the Queen in Sleeping Beauty. I'll sashay across the stage, ham it up and thoroughly enjoy myself along with all the cast and crew members plus the six 'houses' we aim to fill.
Will yiz all come? Promise? Yay!