Does that sound strange? psychotic? perhaps borderline schizophrenic? Well, I will admit; its a lot of all of the above but, it is a tried and true tradition every year around this time. In my house anyway.
There are the Emmys, The Sag Awards, The Golden Globes, The Daytime Emmys etc. all leading up to the biggest wet dream of them all, The OSCARS!!!!
I have tried to comprehend what these emotions are all about and we do, when I say we I mean actors, tend to psychoanalyze ourselves from time to time. (to be honest, we do it all the time, who am I kidding) Its just the nature of the beast really and it helps with what we do so its a win/win if you like torture.
There is so much insecurity in all of us but with actors it is such a contradiction. Most of us love to be on stage but have a fear of public speaking. We love to see our name in lights but hate when all of the attention is focused on us. I know that many actors, myself included, hate watching themselves on screen. Why you ask? Because we know ourselves enough to know that no one can rip our performances apart like we can. No one is more judgmental and critical of our work, appearance, or every conceivable flaw, then we are.
And we also know that once we see ourselves 'acting' it will forever inhibit our next performance. This will all lead to being stuck in our heads instead of alive within the context of the world we should be immersed in (the make-believe world of the scene people). You've heard the expression 'get out of your head' well I think that's where it came from.
We actors live in a town called 'self loathing'. Its on the outskirts of 'ego' and 'narcissism' and to the left of a little cul-de-sac called 'recognition' and 'acceptance'. We crave and are all of these lovely words rolled into one; remember what I said about contradictions?
I sometimes encounter people who are so cut-off from their emotions that I think, "isn't that horrible, not being able to feel things to any extreme"; but then it dawns on me, they might be the lucky ones. To most, those people are known as 'even keeled'. I on the other hand, feel things in extremes. When something hurts, its crushing. When I'm happy, its a holiday. The total and complete opposite of 'even keeled'. But every once in a while I feel very, very lucky to be able to feel so much emotion and to have that at my disposal. Like when I'm auditioning for a scene that requires you to rip your heart out. Then I think, "no problem, one heart coming up". The harder and more gut wrenching the scene is, the more I enjoy it. We are extremely masochistic creatures as well. But we live to express what we feel and that can be crippling at times.
So on this Emmy night, I want to wish all actors, the privilege and joy of feeling each emotion as it passes through you. To feel the giddiness, the racing heart, the sweaty palms, the paralyzing fear, doubt, unworthiness, the extreme euphoria and especially the hope. The never-ending hope that you need to keep chasing this wonderful, crazy, passionate, fantastical, unpredictable dream that is the actor's life.
I would like to thank.......