A Hunting Shack Christmas is now open, and the baby due date is getting closer. That means I could go on any day. For the past two weeks, I have been watching this incredible ensemble of actors put this show together. As they have been working away, I have been sitting there, watching the incredibly talented and funny Jason Ballweber create Ham, the roll I will fill in for, muttering his lines under my breath, and imagining myself walking his blocking. Every time I entered the theatre for rehearsal, I knew the part that much more.
Today, I had a chance to somewhat earn my stripes. We had our first and only understudy rehearsal where I got to run through all of Ham's scenes in the play with the rest of the cast. Jason sat in the house, giving me helpful tips along the way. I made it through with the support of the company. They were all very complementary of my preparedness and my commitment to the part.
The oddest thing about being an understudy is not the fact that I am just filling in for someone, but rather that I am to attempt to recreate Jason's performance when he is not there. Now, obviously we have some differences inherent in the fact that we are two different people. However, an understudy has to attempt to give the audience the same experience as if the other performer were on stage. Someone who saw tonight's show and also saw the night I went on would know that there were two different actors giving two different performances for the same roll. So, I have been looking for the details of his performance. Here's hoping that I will be able to make that happen.
So, I will be updating as we get closer to possible performance of that. Also, another show has landed into my lap...but that's for another time.