Am Dram Ram(ble)

I went for an audition yesterday – if you’re keeping count, I did one a couple of years ago, but the play didn’t go ahead as they couldn’t get the cast – prior to that, the last audition I did was around 20 years ago.

Yesterday the play was macbeth, and given the number of roles available (contrasted with the number of men auditioning) I’m hopeful for … something.

It’s weird though, age 23 I went to university full of vim and vigor and just sauntered in to the queen’s drama society and auditioned without fear – I spent a happy few years playing various parts (usually to good reviews, occasionally to great reviews). Then, age 26 (which felt at that point like several years later, but clearly wasn’t) I sort of bowed gently out of acting, having spent what animus possessed me.

I was never minded to return to it, I went off, got a day job working in computers (the degree was in computers, but it was a hobby that became a real job) and pursued comics as my new hobby/real job.

Now all I do is draw. Computers are part of my life in the way they’re part of everyone’s life now, no more no less but I really feel like I’m missing some outside motivator. Something not related to drawing to get me up and doing stuff. Some third place (first: home, second: work, third: hobby – though given I work at home and comics is my job/hobby, I’m maybe missing a second place as well as a third place). The kids are getting older and more independent (though God knows, not that independent).

My wife has been wonderfully supportive of me returning to acting (When we were both younger though, she really hated the whole thing).

I went to the audition slightly reluctantly, certainly scared and really didn’t pull out much of a performance. Mousey. I think would best describe it. Maybe it’s not in me any more? Maybe it is, but buried deep under decades of flab both physical and mental.

I’m pretty sure my reticence is because I treasure the memory of being confident at this stuff, why spoil that with horrid new memories about being a bit rubbish?

And can you just pick up and go again? ugh.

Maybe I’ve just become really really good at torturing myself with self doubt and questioning my own abilities, having spent so much time in my own company drawing and doing the same.

Maybe the best thing I can do for myself is get out doors, perform in front of some peers and hear an opinion that isn’t built on the echo chamber of my own head.

Any way. I was rubbish. I hope it won’t always be so.

Author: PJ

PJ is a Belfast based comic artist, and has been for some time.

1 thought on “Am Dram Ram(ble)”

  1. “Maybe I’ve just become really really good at torturing myself with self doubt and questioning my own abilities, having spent so much time in my own company drawing and doing the same.”

    Yeah, that is exactly the point. Stop it.
    Being alone at home is leading to getting miserable; you need more contact to other people than your family, or clients.

    So maybe it’s difficult for you to start again with acting, but it’s actually exactly what you need to boost your confidence. You need to scale down you expectations and accept that you have to work on yourself and your acting skills, because it’s how many years ago?
    Plus, now that you are older – and hopefully wiser – you will have a different insight to acting.

    I can say for myself that its fear that’s keeping me down, fear from rejection and failure. And you are afraid that you’re not good enough, at everything you do.

    You must remember that 1. It’s not important what others think of you at the end, and 2. You can do it if you want to, you’ve already did it when you were young.

    Do what stresses you and congratulate yourself, when you are done.

    I could draw when I was younger, now I’m in computers. Two weeks ago I tried to draw something. Now I know I can’t draw for shit.

    Don’t care, I just need to practice more, you know? If I ever find the time for that…

Comments are closed.