After months of writing, rehearsing, planning and promoting...Five Dollar Funny opened last night. Overall, it was a success. The bad part about being an actor is a sketch comedy show is that it is virtually impossible to get a feel for how the overall performance is going because so much time is spent backstage. People laughed. Thats a good thing for a comedy show. Overall I was struck at how the actual performance wasn't that big of a deal to me. Don't get me wrong. I really enjoyed being on stage and performing, but it seemed secondary. Here were some of my favorite moments of our first performance:
1. Jeremy. Early on Jeremy wasn't so sure about my dream for Saga. It took me a long time to communicate to him why I thought God was leading me to be with theater people. He showed up six hours early and ran the technical end of the show. He was backstage all night with a huge circa 1982 set of headphones. It was fun to watch him use his attention to detail to help all of us.
2. My Improv Team. Rolan, Noah, Adrian, Nikki, and Chris. (Sarah will join us this friday.) It was very cool to see these new friends interact with my community. I saw Nikki and Debbie talking in the hallway. I saw Sean doing white boy slam/rap with Noah and Adrian. I saw Rolan always looking out for Kelly to make sure she had her mic on time. The biggest moment was the backstage prayer. I was standing between Adrian and Noah when everyone held hands. For a moment I thought nothing of it. I have been in thousands of prayer circles in my life. But then I realized that I was holding Noah's and Adrian's hand. "We're praying people," I whispered to Adrian. "Yeah...I've been preparing for this all day. I thought this would happen." He said it in a funny manner...as if he were a little nervous...but not offended. Jeremy prayed. I saw a glimpse of what could be.
3. After the show I drove home by myself. I have a bad toothache and maybe an ear infection too. The pain was unbearable. I had been flying on the energy of the show, but then it all went away and the pain came in. It was the worst pain that I can ever remember having. I wanted to rip my head off of my body. I cried. I beat the stearing wheel and asked God to take it away. I drove 90 mph to get home and take a Loritab. I thought about how a simple thing like a bad tooth could turn me into a desperate fool. I thought about how I just wanted to be home so Debbie could try to help me, even though I knew she couldn't. I thought about Tom Hanks in Cast Away using an iceskate to knock out a tooth. I thought about Fight Club and the lye and a previous conversation that I had just had with Sean about the pain of his kidney stones. I made it home, took the pill and felt almost completely better in 45 minutes.
4. My favorite part of the night was from 11pm-1am. My housemates, the Petersons, the Stokes, Sia and Dale sat around the dining room table and talked about the show, about Gregg's appearance on Star Search, about Gregg's choice of undergarments, about upcoming shows and ideas. After everyone left, Kenny and I quickly counted the money. There was almost enough to cover the expenses of the shows. "Well...this is fun, but we'll never get rich doing it this way." I said in a sleep deprived, Loritab induced stuper. "I was just thinking about how rich we are." Kenny replied. "Rich in friends and experiences."
He was right. Rich. Filthy, stinkin' rich.