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theatrical hazards

we went to see buried child by sam shephard at belvoir last night. very dense, harrowing, comic and enjoyable. but it doesn’t put you in a particularly relaxed state.

after the show, we ran the gauntlet of the belvoir foyer. usually it’s not too bad, but last night there seemed to be familiar faces everywhere i turned. an actor i worked with in first year. a director whose show i stage managed. a few friends from uni/theatre days. an actor who had once been a good friend but disappeared and cut connections when he went interstate.

and i had nothing much to say. i chatted to a couple of them, but that left mum standing to one side, uninvolved. besides which, i wanted to absorb what i had just seen and not give the standard vox pop “it was fantastic!” so we made up some transparent excuse and ran away.

it’s not that those people aren’t perfectly nice. most of them are. but i don’t have anything they need. in years past, perhaps my currencies were talent and ability. i could write for them, direct for them, act for them, haul a show into a theatre for them. but now that i appear to have relinquished all that, there isn’t a common point of reference. in fact i’d be happy to work in theatre again, but only if it was something new. not the same old unpaid stuff, masquerading as great avant garde artistes, “breaking down the barriers” and “pushing the boundaries” when we’re just a bunch of uni students pretending to do shakespeare.

besides which, i hate schmoozing.