Friday, 4 June 2010

The play's the thing!

I think I've commented before on how life goes in circles for me, with my passion bouncing around and lighting on one thing for a while, and then on another, then another, and eventually back to my original love. Well, it's been a long time since the theatre held my fancy, ten years, near as dammit, because it's not since school that I've been involved with it.

More recently it's been photography, or writing, or knitting, or sewing, or cooking, but ten years ago it was the thrill of setting up a play, planning the costumes, makeup, hair, helping the stage crew and lighting guys by passing them tools and fetching things - I adored the teamwork, camaraderie, adrenaline rush of putting something together for the public to see, without the stomach churning hell of having to go on-stage.

Right now I'm watching 'When Romeo Met Juliet'. To quote the BBC website:-

One city, eight weeks and two contrasting schools come together to put on a professional production of Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet. In a unique experiment, each school is cast as one of the two feuding families at the heart of the world's favourite love story.

Romeo and his Montague clan come from a Coventry city centre comprehensive while Juliet and the Capulets are from a Catholic school in the city's northern suburbs. Trying to get the show on the road is artistic director of the National Youth Theatre, Paul Roseby. Also on hand as mentors - one for each school - are Hustle actor and RADA-trained Shakespeare fan Adrian Lester and his wife, actress Lolita Chakrabarti. Can they help the teenage cast overcome their preconceptions about Shakespeare, and work with each other, to create a Romeo and Juliet for a new generation, iambic pentameter and all?

For a start I just love the fact that these are two schools that I'm familiar with through my voluntary work with young people in Coventry - I keep looking out for kids that I know (haven't spotted one yet mind). It's made me realise how much I've adopted Coventry as my home town now - I'm getting so excited to see it on the TV, feeling so proud that they're doing this here. I've really settled in now and it's going to hurt if we ever have to move...

Secondly - it's reminding me of the rush I used to feel helping get productions off the ground. I miss it. I've applied for a job that might let me experience something of that thrill again and I really *really* want it. Watching this has just prodded me into realising how badly. Dangerous position to be in - bad enough to be rejected for a job that one only wants mentally, but to be rejected for a job that one has become emotionally attached to? I wonder if I ought to start stockpiling chocolate and tissues now, just in case...?

I know that a job is just a way of making money so one can live, but I would so love a job that could be part of my *living*. One that I can engage with and feel truly passionate about. Too much to ask? I'll let you know :-)

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