Cheers, chants, lullabies, and other things I'm not good at.
Last month when I heard all of Under The Gods’ Golden Cleats out loud for the first time something became very clear… I am bad at writing certain things. Throughout the play there is a cluster of cheerleaders that make up a cheerleading chorus and they have chants and cheers throughout the piece keeping the audience up to date, and to make you feel like you’re at a football game. This was part of my original idea, and I wanted to really utilize it because it also gave more lines in the play for women. At reading, I could barely hold back my laughter when the poor souls that I assigned to be the cheerleader chorus tried to read my overly-wordy and complicated cheers. For some reason, I remember being so excited when I realized zealots and helots rhyme (helots were Greek slaves), and it wasn’t until the reading that I saw how much that didn’t matter because neither word should EVER be crammed into a cheer… Ever.
Then there’s the lullaby… Achilles’ mom, Thetis tries to sooth her son with a lullaby after Patroclus is killed. Oy vey. I tried to set it to the rhythm of “hush little baby”… When I heard that out loud it became very clear that I had no idea how to do that. A friend told me, you’re putting the wrong emphasis on the syllables… It was like she was speaking a foreign language.
In case you were wondering what I’ve been doing lately, it’s this… Rewriting all my terrible versus…. And you know, for those of you keeping count… I think it’s taken me longer to write the 8 or so cheers and 1 lullaby than it took me to write the rest of the play. Yeah, that’s how hard it is for me.
In other things that I’m not good at, very exciting developments and plans are being made for The Fantasy Club production coming this summer, and I can’t tell you anything! Will announce as soon as I’m given the green light.