Wednesday, December 21, 2011
No Matter What
An extension of "The Show Must Go On" is that while all actors act, professional actors act no matter what. No matter what else is going on in the actor's life or in the world, the actor is expected, like any other job, to do their job. This can mean that even if you've had a bad day, even lost a loved one or something else terrible and tragic, the job is to act anyway. I'm not saying it will be pleasant, or even possible to give the focus and performance one would like to, but by and large an actor is charged with doing the job well even in less than ideal circumstances.
Hopefully future sudden losses, wars or other extremes may not make it into your career, or mine, but no matter what, we live one life only. Without being too dramatic: if something was worth doing on your last day alive, than it is worth doing today. If the project you are performing in or auditioning for is worth your time and attention, then it still is worth your time and attention on the worst day of your life.
You may be devastated and unable to work. That's ok. But the work is still worth doing, and if you can't do it due to extraordinary hardship or tragedy, it being left undone by you simply underscores the badness of the hardship or tragedy. We do what we can when we can, and being overwhelmed or hurt to the point of incapacity is understandable, sometimes unavoidable. Still great to soldier on, to entertain, create, collaborate even when the world is falling apart.
Acting is just as noble an undertaking as any other. One can even argue in some ways it may be more noble than many. The United States now spends more money on entertainment than it does on food. Our country has voted with their money and agrees: acting is worth doing no matter what.
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