Up-post 2: . . . or maybe it’s the prozac

First week of Up is in the book. This is a professionally done video shot during tech. I think I look terrible; exhausted and paunchy. But . . . maybe I am.

I’ve been feeling remarkably calm about the show. I have no idea “how it is”. You know, the answer to that question friends always ask, “You’re in Up? Oh. How is it?” As I’ve written before, I tend to think it’s the actor’s obligation to say “fantastic” and mean it. In other words, we’re never objective and we shouldn’t be.

I worry that my calm around the production represents a creeping lack of desire. Maybe I’m just not as excited about acting anymore. Or is it the fluoxatine? I’ve been taking 20 mgs. a day since August. I worry that along with the edge it’s taking off the rest of my life, it’s also preventing me from experiencing the far ends of the emotional spectrum a role like this asks an actor to experience. I thought about going off it for the run, but, for some other reasons, I decided now was not the time.

Or maybe it’s the subject matter of the play. Walter destroys his own family in pursuit of a calling he feels defines him. The play describes his attempt at living a fiction which comports more with his wife’s and the world’s expectations. I wonder if the closeness of Walter’s journey to my own is creating a kind of psychic distancing on my part, as if my subconscious is saying, okay, let’s play the role . . . from a distance. Not to say I’m destroying my family, no. But the tension between what I do and the lack of financial stability and resources becomes harder and harder to reconcile the older I get. And I feel a little like Walter: what else can I do?

And yet what responses I’ve been getting have been positive. And I love the play and the role. Two more weeks. Catch it while you can.

Up-post 2: . . . or maybe it’s the prozac . . .  originally published Monday, March 22, 2010