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Friday, June 11, 2004

One Naked Man

I can hear echoes of last night's applause. The laughter from the audience was overwhelming at times, and I was surprised people actually cheered when good things happened to Robert, the role I play. Sometimes I found it necessary to come up with creative ways to hold for laughs. I knew some of the lines were funny, but I didn't expect such long loud sustained laughter. The whole cast worked as a great ensemble. This show demands a lot of the actors - speedy entrances and exits, quick costume changes (or costume shedding), rapid line delivery and a lot of bravery. Doors fly open and shut at a rapid pace. I was proud of everybody in our show. Nobody dropped the ball. We dropped our pants, but never the ball.

It's the echoes that keep me coming back to the stage. So much of my life slips through my fingers. I forget about things people said to me. I forget details of parties. Sometimes I forget that I already saw a movie, and it will seem vaguely familiar as I start to watch it again. Some moments in life are more significant to me. I treasure the echoes of those memories. They stay with me long after the moment passes.

Holding hands on the scariest rollercoaster ever, posing for a picture on Le Pont Saint-Louis on a cold grey day in Paris, sitting at a campfire after a day of safari in Kenya, getting drenched in the fountains at Crown Center in Kansas City, running on the beach at the Oregon Coast, holding my dog in my arms as he falls asleep, exchanging rings under pine trees in New Mexico...Echoes of beautiful moments help you remember you are alive.

Last night's performance was a rush. I felt high after the show, and it wasn't from the champagne. The beauty of live theater is that every performance is a unique moment never to be repeated. Although we have several more performances, opening night is a thrill that's hard to match. I wish everyone in the audience last night knew their laughter and applause still echo in my mind. They gave me such a gift.

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