Friday, October 1, 2010

"Take money, tuck it away."

I'm home from rehearsal, and this evening we staged the section of "Grimes" when I have the most to sing/do. First of all, I'm in heels the entire time. I am of the belief that if a guy isn't interested in me at 5'7, making myself 5'9 isn't going to help my cause. Except when necessary, I am the person who enters her first costume fitting begging for flats or the lowest, chunkiest, most masculine heel they will allow.
These heels are not even 2 inches and compared to the Jimmy Choos and Blahniks of the world, they are the width of a linebacker. However, when I am raised above floor level, all balance bets are off.
As the head of the pub "The Boar" in our little fishing village, I carry pitchers up and down stairs, wipe off tables, and in this production, actually clean up "vomit" which today was the most disturbing deep pink color. Management assures us the color will eventually be a pea yellow. I don't see how this is any better for me as the tottering, unsteady mopper. The mop and bucket are old fashioned in the extreme, and we had a lovely time in rehearsal trying to teach me where to step on one side while pushing down the lever on the other side, while drawing the mop head through the wringer. This would be difficult for me at floor level. Add 2 inches, and I was tipping left.....right....forward..... The perpetrator of the puke is my friend Beau, and I've already told him that he needs to be prepared for me literally crashing into him. It's a sad, sad thing when the village drunk is my only chance of staying upright in my own bar.
Beau's character also hands me fake paper money as he advances on my whores. "Take money, tuck it away" is a common direction for characters in my career. I got home from rehearsal late this evening, and suddenly felt something and discovered my payment was still wedged quite securely.
I would like to think that the professional ease I have achieved with the money-in-boobage moments I come by genetically. Grandma Koop to this day likes to keep cash "safe and close at hand", and despite a bevy of lovely handbags of various materials/sizes/colors/functions, I can often be found with nothing in my hands and a subtle bulge where no gentleman would feel welcome to search. My $20 is just as widely accepted for being on the warm side.
Onstage, I have had paper money, coins, keys, letters, pictures, and even in one memorable scene, a flask, all down in the most convenient and easily accessible space available to women. It's when the direction calls for someone else to place the payment there him/herself that I feel like a personal loan officer.
I once had a famous tenor told to deposit his coins "deep in there." After chivalrously asking me if I was fine with this arrangement, he declared "I love my job!" and dove in.

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