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    Posted February 23, 2012


The Actors circle of life: Audition. Call back. Booked the job. Work. Opening. More work. Closing. Crash.

The Stage Managers circle of life: Submit. Interview. Booked the job. Work. Opening. More Work. Closing. Crash.

Weather you are an Actor, Stage Manager, Production or Tech we all are all too familiar with it. Something one rarely talks about. The dark place. The "I'll never work again"-s.

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IF you leave your house, you find yourself plastering on your best party smile, trying to save face and the little shred of sanity you feel you have left… Wondering if anyone actually will "know" how you feel or what you are going though…. You pray they don't ask how you are doing...

How do we as a community and as individuals deal with it? Most of us take our dark place for a brief period of time, come out on the other end and never talk about it except to our closest family and friends. It's a wonder the Actors Fund doesn't have a support group for "my show closed, I'm unemployed and in the dark place funk". In fact maybe they should start one that meets on Thursdays (AKA payday). Maybe I'll start such a group in my living room... but then again would anyone be willing to leave their PJ's, couch and comfort items for a support group?

A friend of mine, who prefers to remain anonymous, said they stay in bed for a week, "I allow myself to mourn the loss. It is a death after all." This person also said, "I don't audition, book day job work, go to class, do a single thing around the house, watch what I eat, answer my phone, emails or *gasp* even check my facebook. I mourn and come out the following Monday my their chin up, ready to hit the pavement for auditions and new possibilities." Another friend deals with it by consistently working on his audition material so the panic of "what's next" is lessened.

While we are working, we manage to have a family feeling (even the dysfunctional part). The "oh my goodness I can't believed we lived through that together" feeling. After closing life goes on and sometimes it feels like the entire experience was a dream. Back to reality we march. Every time. The part that I find curious: we always feel like we march that march alone. But if you think about it, the entire company marches alone: together.

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