If I were You

After 13 years I got in to a play to act again…it was strange…I wanted to be in a production but shying away from acting…why?

Perhaps I felt I am a grown up professional and I cannot be an actress now…I don’t know…this society makes you self-conscious…you have to think a couple of times before you make a decision about how you want to be known in this small island community.

Apart from all that, at a personal level, it was like returning to an old boyfriend you had left behind in your high school days…it’s quite an awkward thing to do.

To cut a somewhat long story short I auditioned and got selected.

I became Biddy Andreas from Three Birds Alighting on a Field by Timberlake Wertenbaker. Ofcourse, the play brought together 13 such texts from British Theatre and over 25 souls as actors. All of us were reacting, connecting and acting…

The experience of being in this play was so superb in so many different ways. Somehting of my old self was restored to me I felt. I could hold my own ground in it. People have been generous with their comments, so I guess I still do have a flare to act.

And then I realise, we are transformed not by what we think in our heads, however great these thoughts maybe, but by what we do.

I didn’t research the history of kissing on stage in Sri Lankan theatre, but apparantly it’s not common. One of my buddies put it in a way I cannot forget. “Sinhala theatre is so devoid of moments of romantic passion…so there’s hardly any kissing there…and in Sri Lankan English theatre, you’d probably be kissing your sister-in-law, so you’re better off without it.” Whatever, I seem to have tampered with a certain limit there. Two magazines carry it, one with a photograph! Jesus! This country so needs some loving and showing of loving!

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