A couple of weeks ago, a friend of ours asked me to do something. Uncharacteristically I said “Yes”, almost without a thought. My normal approach would have been to buy some time to think it through, then I would have said “No”.
The request was to do a wee drama sketch in Perth Concert Hall at a Christmas celebration involving 6 churches.
Generally speaking I’m quite a confident person – but not in this case. It’s over 20 years since I’ve done any sort of drama, and in that time my memory has deteriorated (a lot).
So why did I agree to do it? I genuinely don’t know. I am not competent in this area, I’m certainly not confident, and I’m so far out of my comfort zone that I’ll get jet lag on the way back! I’ve been feeling pretty nervous for about a fortnight!
Anyway, the celebration was tonight – and it seemed to go well. I didn’t fluff any lines (that I’m aware of); and people were very kind in their reactions afterwards. Truth to tell, I really enjoyed it. The attendance was amazing - over 1200 packed into the Concert Hall, with 400 people turned away because it was full. (Only negative note for me - Fish Wife and Dolly D were among the 400, and not becasue they turned up late!)
Our only rehearsal in the venue was cut short, but most of my nerves seemed to vanish as I donned the costume. (I was the archangel Raphael in white boiler suit and hard hat!)
I was really encouraged by the young woman who was performing opposite me. Her role (and her own character) was based on infectious enthusiasm, which seemed to rub off on me.
Would I do it again? Well I wouldn’t say ‘No’ straightaway!
What have I learned?
- Firstly, I can remember things (although it’s not easy).
- Secondly, maybe I need to push out of my comfort zone occasionally.
- Thirdly, it was a useful reminder to me about how it feels to be a bit out of your depth.
- Fourthly, there are things that the middle-aged can learn from the young.
- Lastly, maybe I’m too old to learn some new tricks.