Tread­ing the boards for the first time

Re­porter Rexine Hawes put her out­go­ing per­son­al­ity to use, by ap­pear­ing in the Short n Sweet Fes­ti­val for our Re­porter Chal­lenge series.

Matamata Chronicle - - Out & About -

I have al­ways won­dered where the theatre say­ing ‘‘break a leg’’ comes from.

Ap­par­ently, it’s bad luck, to wish an ac­tor good luck, so they went with that say­ing in­stead.

Well, I didn’t break a leg, but I did shed a few pounds and lose a bit of sleep from the stress of ‘‘tread­ing the boards’’ at the theatre for the very first time in my life.

I was chal­lenged by Colin Kem­plen to par­tic­i­pate in the Mata­mata Short n Sweet Fes­ti­val, held over four days last week, con­clud­ing with a mati­nee on Sun­day.

I think I sur­prised Colin with my act­ing abil­i­ties and he seemed pretty happy with my per­for­mance. I sur­prised my­self ac­tu­ally.

I played Jas­mine Hooker, a ‘‘bit of fluff’’ to an­tiques col­lec­tor ‘‘con-man’’ Ger­ald, played by the charm­ing and tal­ented Chris Cham­bers.

Our cast also in­cluded Sally Jenk­ins and Hil­ton Woodroofe in the play Thanks a Mil­lion, writ­ten by Colin Kem­plen and di­rected by Heather Bond.

Along the way, they each gave me pre­cious act­ing ad­vice, such

‘‘I played Jas­mine Hooker, a 'bit of fluff' to an­tiques col­lec­tor 'con-man' Ger­ald - played by the charm­ing and tal­ented Chris Cham­bers.’’

Do you have a chal­lenge for our re­porter? Send in your ideas and sug­ges­tions to: rexine.hawes@fair­fax­me­dia.co.nz

as project your voice, don’t curse and don’t panic if you for­get your lines, and my own ad­vice, don’t throw up on stage.

Hil­ton told me if I wasn’t ner­vous, I should be wor­ried. I was com­forted and sur­prised to learn ex­pe­ri­enced ac­tors still suf­fer from the jit­ters on open­ing night.

I was def­i­nitely jit­tery and pos­si­bly ‘‘happy’’ on too much res­cue rem­edy and I am happy to say I got through each night fum­ble­free.

Dr Greg Dunn even gave me a high-five af­ter open­ing night.

Ev­ery sin­gle per­son in­volved in the fes­ti­val had some­thing en­cour­ag­ing to say.

At no time did I feel un­sup­ported or alone - ev­ery­one was so kind. I am very grate­ful for the in­vi­ta­tion and ex­pe­ri­ence.

As soon as it was over, I missed the theatre ter­ri­bly - and the peo­ple. I hope to meet some of them again when I au­di­tion for Short n Sweet 2019.

Mata­mata has in­cred­i­bly tal­ented ac­tors, direc­tors, writ­ers and stage crew and I en­cour­age ev­ery­one to get along to the next pro­duc­tions at both the dra­matic and mu­si­cal the­atres.

Maybe even put your hand up for a part?

This chal­lenge was suc­cess­fully ex­e­cuted - and I am on the hunt for the next.

Any sug­ges­tions?

RACHEL PRIDHAM

The cast and crew of Mata­mata’s Short n Sweet fes­ti­val.

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