Saturday was by far the best performance of the show we did. We had a slightly overfull house because of the cancellation on Friday night and they were up, responsive and participatory. Everyone was wonderful and when I got up to do my testimony at the end of Act II it felt smooth, commanding, at ease. Act III had me engaged, choked up. I loved the play, every second of it. I loved the cast. I loved doing it. Not Guilty.
Sunday crashed and burned for me. It was the closing so I wanted to go out on a high note. It was going nicely, good pace. Not as spectacular as the night before but definitely a good solid show. Then in the middle of my Act II testimony M went blank. And not just blank but stunningly blank. Deer in the headlights blank. At first he just looked at me and then, then I saw panic set in. He ran to the defense table where there is a huge pile of copied pages of the script and began to frantically search for his place. I knew he was never going to find it. And there is nothing I can do. I can’t just start speaking. That won’t make any sense. Although, maybe I should to rescue the show. How can I reword this line to put us on track? He asks a question. Not the correct one but I can work with we go on…for three lines. But clearly he has lost the scene completely. He asks a question and it is so different that I am completely thrown I don’t have any idea what to do or where I am. At sea. So I just jump to the end of the scene in a desperate attempt to bring the character of Larry on so we can just move forward. When he comes on I am so riled so shaky that the break down has a more tension and charge than it ever has had before. So I got something out of it. A feeling of panic, fear, tension that I can remember and hopefully recreate when I need it. But I never fully recovered for Act III. Although it was alright, I should be affected, scared, sad, stressed so I used it to my full advantage. I let my fear and disappointment show. I let tears come close enough to fight them. And then it was over. I was guilty last night. But I found out later that our bailiff just decided I was. The vote was 8-4 in my favor, one of the lowest. It was usually 11-1, sometimes 10-2. I don’t blame him at all. We needed more than one loss.
Last night I felt hollow. I hate the end of a run. The sudden deflation. I thought this one would be easier having a script in hand but its not. I cried all through the Oscars. I cried this morning in the shower. I could cry any minute at work today. I always forget how hard it is for me to decompress. And this was by far one of the best experiences of my career so far. I loved every minute of this show. The cast was massive and they were wonderful despite any complaints I may have had along the way. A true ensemble piece.
Things I’ll miss:
Glaring at the jury.
"Yeah that's the one! I see you got a hold of that too." Heck B's whole performance.
“Then how can you speak of him such as you did? Don’t you know why he married you?”
B as Junquist. One of the best actors I’ve ever worked with.
Testifying in Act III.
Sparring with the DA.