When Egos CollideLast evening's Musical rehearsal was a bit of a trial. I brought a nasty mood along with me... I was tired already from a night of poor sleep, work was busy, I pushed myself a little too hard at the gym, then there was an insane amount of traffic on the bridge and I was bumper-to-bumper for over an hour, I hadn't eaten anything since noon and was absolutely starving, and I occupied a good deal of my wait by talking to my mother on the cellphone, so I was a bit of a wreck emotionally and physically... and I was more interested in eating my sandwich and fruit salad and resting my tired legs than in going over songs and dances which I am so sick of that each run-through makes me want to slit my throat.
I'm sure I was not the only one who'd had a long day and a difficult week, plenty of us were tired and hungry, so it was a room full of people who would much rather be somewhere else doing something else but who had made a committment and were sticking to it. Grumbling was heard, dirty looks were exchanged, and a few outbursts of temper could be observed... and many of these involved me.
The scary thing is that the first show is two weeks from today and we still stink up the room during our production numbers. I for one find them impossibly complicated... difficult music mixed in with difficult choreography on top of scattershot blocking and everchanging tempi. When one is not a very good dancer, can't read music, has no memory for notes, and not only can't remember what dance step goes with which lyric and vice versa but can't even remember to sing in one's own range all of the time... well, it's a daunting and depressing experience.
What I am having trouble with, aside from the physical difficulties listed above, is that when I am upset or insecure or angry at myself, I tend to come off as bored... I shuffled through my dance steps last night because I was too tired to actually put any balls into them; however, my demeanor was not one of exhaustion but of ennui. When I made a comment of any kind, I sounded pretentious and snide, when in fact I was trying not to cry.
I guess what I'm saying is that some days I regret my armor. I have all these weird defense mechanisms that I don't even fully understand, and these defenses often turn into offenses. While trying to protect my self-image, I hurt other people's feelings.
Something else to work on. In the meantime, I have to find a wig (something black, styled in some sort of 60s coif), some feminine sneakers (also in black), and probably a few more costumes and props that I don't know about yet. People who have been in the Musical before assure me that it's always total chaos right up until the show, and then everything works out in the end. I find in my own experience that things only work out in the end if you compromise your original intentions and values, and this is always painful to me. I prefer to be overprepared than to reassess my priorities at the last minute.
But I'm not directing this show (nor would I, not for all the cubic zirconia on HSN). So for the next two weeks I am going to practice like mad on my own and do everything I can to memorize all these steps and lyrics, try to be enthusiastic and supportive and agreeable at rehearsals no matter how tired I am, and keep a civil tongue in my head no matter how provoking other people's behavior becomes.
After all, I can do anything for only two weeks. Afterward we will return to your regular broadcast bitch.