101788/89 Local Theatre Series, Riverview, NB

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Well, here’s a one-time anomaly in this series that I am penning.  While I have each ticket individually labelled and placed in my ticket albums exactly like a thousand other concert and show tickets I just can’t bring myself to try and write up these five plays separately.   None stand out on their own in my memory (except maybe Agnes Of God, but probably because of the movie and not the play), and none ranks in any sort of importance or significance in my entertainment trajectory.

But they are indeed in my ticket collection and I feel they should be included so I present them here all together: Blood Relations (October 17th, 1988), Scapino (December 12th, 1988), Road To Mecca (February 4th, 1989), The Kite (March 20th, 1989), and the aforementioned Agnes Of God* (May 1st, 1989).

When I was in grade twelve I took Theatre Arts and a required element of the class was purchasing tickets for and attending a season of amateur theatre at Riverview High School.  Though I was seriously averse to any sort of extracurricular activities I was okay with this requirement.  Moncton was pretty devoid of evening entertainment and my girlfriend was in the same class so we treated the shows as dates.  It was all so very Archie and Betty (or Veronica, but really…Betty).

These five show were my first experiences with live theatre and I quite enjoyed them all.  It made me interested enough in theatre to take the plunge and try out for our own high school play.  I got in and soon learned that theatre wasn’t for me.  At our single performance I sat on stage more nervous than I’ve ever been**, black splotches blurring my vision as my shaking hands held a newspaper in front of my face.  I and every other character were onstage throughout the performance; we were supposed to be ‘frozen’ whenever we didn’t have a line.  

All I could hear in the theatre was my newspaper shaking and shaking in my sweaty hands, the sound loudly echoing throughout the big room.  When my lines did come I blew them; a few of them at least.  Five minutes into the performance I knew my acting career was over and that I would be sticking to rock and roll from then on, thank-you very much.

Though I suppose if I had stuck with acting I probably would have met with equal success.

*Agnes knows why, but the white ticket that is printed as “The Kite” was actually my ticket for Agnes Of God while the yellow ticket with the “Kite” sticker was my ticket for The Kite.

**My intense stage fright was surprising – to me anyway – considering I was regularly playing gigs at the time.  I was occasionally playing in front of some sizeable audiences too, even back in high school, and I was never too nervous for them.    But playing music ain’t the same as acting; at least to me it ain’t.

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