Wednesday, June 27, 2007

I had a dream, a wonderful dream.

I am sitting in my office waiting for a patient. I am a psychiatrist. I had a dream that for the past six weeks I lived the life of a perfomer, travelling around England and even performing on the stage of the West End in the middle of Trafalgar Square eight times a week. It's hard to believe it happened, and hard to understand that it's over. It was an amazing experience. I feel so proud and accomplished, and also very humbled by the whole thing. Proud that we did what we said we'd do, and that we gave our best, night after night. I watched as Murray and I each became more able to be "present" on the stage, and came to know that we really do what we say we do. Like the proverbial actors nightmare, each show, we stood in the wings, not knowing what was going to happen, no script in mind, and no blocking to remember. And then we went on and each time twomentalking did us...we didn't do it, it did us. Something emerged each time that was new and and a learning. It became an intimate experience for us and the audience. An audience member asked me if it was real, the feeling she felt, that we were very connected with each of them. And it was real. I felt a deep connection to my fellow human beings sitting in that theatre, aware of the heat they suffered (due to an antiquated air conditioning system); touched by their attentive listening, affected by their sometimes distress, warmed by their generous laughter and ultimately moved by the connection we all shared.
I was humbled by the craft of what it means to be an "actor". The discipline and rigor that it takes to give the best one can, night after night, in the heat or the cold, whether happy or sad, knowing that there is an audience out there and they deserve my best.
People ask me where we are going after the successful run in London. I can't say. I don't know. I think time and the gods will decide what's next. In the meantime I am back to being a therapist and psychiatrist, integrating what I have learned, and working at synthesizing these very different work lives that I love.



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