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  • cogswellmatt77


I've found that some of my best artistic choices have happened last minute, such as when I would decide to audition for a show an hour before the audition began and show up, knowing I'd be seen. Granted, I could only do this with companies where I was already known, but it was fun nonetheless. I did once audition with a new group to be a replacement in Assassins with very little notice and preparation. I didn't get the role, but I'm still proud of myself for following that impulse. I wasn't going to go to my usual Wednesday writer-performer's group tonight. I wanted an evening of just checking out and continuing my desire to not overpromote my obnoxious self. The attempts are rather futile anyway.

With about eighty minutes to spare before the group meeting, I looked at my notes for the revision of the solo show. I took the character of Derek and worked through my notes about how I wanted to combine two monologues from the workshop and film version into one monologue, while also adding some current references to add to his hatred for all things social media. The character is essentially me, but many people don't like that. It disturbs their perception of who I am. I cut details that no longer worked (if they ever did) and made it a tighter, angrier pace. Derek is my most explosive character, and I love him.

His polar opposite is Reese, and his was the other monologue I revised for tonight's reading. The basic storyline is still there from the previous revision. I deleted some word choice to make a tighter monologue. Like Derek, Reese only appears twice in the revision. Reese has implosive anger bubbling under the surface, and it is delicious to play him. These two are paired together, Derek then Reese, both times they appear in the current nine-character play. It is a conscious choice.

I flubbed my 'performance' of it tonight when I thought the sound of someone coming into the waiting room was the timer bell to keep us around five minutes. I continued the piece. Reese speaks about his friendships with gay men who don't see him as a sexual creature (the truth of my life) and has a line, "I'm tired of being told about the party but never being invited to it." One of the established writers sent me a private chat complimenting the 'great' line. She also wrote, "You write with courage."

I'm glad I attended the virtual meeting. It is a small group of encouraging, fellow creatives. It's my current audience, and I'm trying to live in that contentment.

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