Wazzup, Baby… Playing God

Got a job as God recently…

Actually, a friend was having a reading of Bruce Jay Friedman’s Steambath, funny and dated play from the 70s.

Tried out for a part in it as a hoot – since I saw the play on PBS in the early 70s, always had a fantasy to play the part of God, a Puerto Rican steambath attendant. Don’t audition much and don’t think I looked that impressive. Weeks went by during which I didn’t think much about the audition – at that point was sure I wasn’t cast.

Then the director (Eric) contacted me to tell me I didn’t get my coveted part, but I had a part – Bieberman, the least attractive guy in the cast. Was game to do it anyway.

Just before the first rehearsal, got an email that God had quit (and why wouldn’t he) as He was moving to Burlington VT (and why wouldn’t He), offering me the part. So now am playing God, unmetaphorically speaking.

Rehearsals went well… we had a surprising number for a script-in-hand reading. End result I felt like I was the biggest liability in the cast. Sure that a playwright shouldn’t mix in and try to perform (example, wasn’t very impressed with my work on the show we did in the Spring either).

However, when the audience was there, they laughed with us a lot and all had a splantasmic time. It all stunned me, suddenly I was playing a lead role in something that people liked. Gotta tell you, now I understand why actors stick with this business… if you can finally get a chance to reach any kind of audience, it’s an amazing experience. Nothing like it.

So if you’re in the Brattleboro VT/Chesterfield NH area tonight (Aug 23 2008) come see the show. Sure, it’s quite sexist in its portrayal of its only female character, but it does have a raft of big laughs – with me as God.