No, this is not my last post (please, I don’t give up that easy). My intention is merely to talk about theater. Since I came to NALSAR, theater, which used to be a significant part of my life had ceased to be even part of my life until recently.
It’s amazing, you would think that one would only have to start shriveling up inside (as far as I have seen, it seems to be a necessary qualification in order to be a responsible, mature adult) after you get a job. And by shriveling up I mean slowly and steadily giving up the things you loved, for more age-appropriate and career-appropriate hobbies and practices. You know what I’m talking about- giving up beer for wine perhaps is a good example. Well, as I was saying, you would think you only have to start this gut-wrenching ritual after getting a job. However, having been a law student for the last 9 months or so, I have discovered that it starts much sooner than that.
And so I don’t sketch often, I don’t really have anywhere (as in any occasion) to dance in, I basically don’t read books (at least not from an actual physical book as opposed to an e-book) for the four months I spend in NALSAR, I don’t clean my room every day (law school seems to make you get rid of your compulsive eccentricities as well), and I have only recently been affiliated to the small drama club that does exist in NALSAR.
What I used to love about theatre, and still love about it, is that it’s very simple. It’s not easy, but it’s simple. You don’t have cinematography, you don’t have editing, you don’t have zooming in and zooming out. Instead, you have a stage, lighting, costumes, props, and you. And with these you can hold the attention of an audience for as long as you want. Your face can never be in detail a it would be with a camera, and ypu definitely can’t airbrush thing out but every character will be in the limelight, at some time or the other.
Remembering lines is another adventure. You have to do that, and you have to do that so many times that at first, it becomes mundane, and then it becomes so mundane that they become part of you, so much so that you start unconsciously quoting them in real life. And then you gain interest again, the kind of interest that is temporary (till you have performed), but is very similar to the kind of interest you develop in a classic movie- the kind that allows you to remember lines verbatim from it, and say it with feeling every time you want to.
One of the things I selfishly love about theatre is that when you are on stage and you can see lights, the audience and your co-workers, you know that life stands still for once, at least for you. You know that no matter how insignificant your role or anyone’s role is, one glitch can make or break the day. Because there are no second chances, no retakes. It’s you, your co-workers (who you end up trusting more than you trust most of your close friends) and the audience. And for every second you are on stage, you hold the play in your hands. Call it megalomaniacal, but I do believe I should be allowed one such tendency.
But most importantly, drama gives me a release that nothing else does, and I mean that in a strictly non-junkie way. When I’m on stage, I don’t take on the role of someone else, I don’t become someone else, and I most definitely don’t act like the character I’m playing. I just let out the part of me that is the personality of whatever character it is. That part of me which will either never resurface simply because I don’t function that way, or because I don’t know how to let it out, or that which I let out every now and then, particularly at certain times of the month. Once that is done, everything else pretty much comes on its own.
And all of it combines to form magic. To become a part of you, you generally don’t bother with; to hold time in your hands for a few seconds, and to be part of something that is bigger than you, but needs you. In some ways, being on stage is sort of similar to what my perception of what an ideal life would be, but probably never will be.
On that happy note, goodnight love. 🙂