Father Jack Production Diary: Opening

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We opened Lughnasa last night. I think it went well—no obvious technical problems; none of the actors dried; there was no blood. It could go better in a few ways, but on the whole, a good first night.

I think I am, on the whole, happy with my Jack. At least in the sense that I don’t have things that I want to do with him that I have been unable to pull off. It’s a bit outside my wheelhouse, I think, so it is nice to think that I could do the thing. Of course, I don’t really know if it is a successful performance, since I don’t get to watch it. One of the things that is frustrating about theater, I’m afraid. At best, you get to find out if the audience liked it, or maybe if some few individuals who have similar taste in theater liked it. But I don’t feel like it’s an unsuccessful performance.

On the other hand, I don’t ever feel like I am giving an unsuccessful interpretation when the show is up. Part of the process, I think, for me, is convincing myself that what I’m doing is working. Even for the most frustrating show I’ve done, when I never felt I liked my interpretation of Jaques at all, I still felt that I was doing what the director asked me to and doing it well. I don’t know how I would go on stage if I thought I was lousy at the time I was doing it. Of course, after the whole thing is over, I can have second thoughts and doubts and such, but it seems important to me to go on-stage with (perhaps misplaced) confidence in my role.

Tolerabimus quod tolerare debemus,

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