Monday, August 29, 2011

The Shadowbox Theatre Monolgues (Better late than never)

So I was asked by Chris Trew to perform monologues for The Megaphone Show. I was honored to be invited. I searched my memories to find the best stories for the improv troupe to piggyback. Considering my mindstate the last couple of months, reminiscing on my drug addled youth seemed to be the most appropriate topic. All of the stories are over 10 years old and 100% true.

I spent the better part of that Wednesday afternoon with a legal pad and a pen. It was amazing to me how much I could recall from those early days of my road to maturity. As the time creeped on, my hand started to cramp up from furiously writing. I penned one story, then the second, and lastly the third. It was a veritable chronology of shenanigans and tomfoolery. I was a wild kid living a reckless life. Oh how far I've come.

I arrived at the Shadowbox Theatre about 30 minutes early with my 12 oz. Redbull, bottle of water and yellow legal pad in tow. The anticipation was building as I was mentally preparing myself for the monologues. I had been to The Megaphone Show once before when my best friend Champsuperstar did her monologues which all contained strippers and rampant drug and alcohol use. I should fit right in.

When I got inside, I noticed that they were playing Yacht Bounce over the PA system (see, smart people get it). I re-read the writings and made some mental revisions since I forgot my pen. I anxiously waited as the audience filed in. As the theatre filled up, I became more and more excited at the prospect of sharing my memories with an audience of my peers. Chris gave me a rundown of the format, and I took my seat in the front row as the troupe came out and introduced themselves.

I was introduced and I started my first monologue. Much to my surprise, people laughed at all the funny parts and focused on the stories as if I was a drug obsessed Ernest Hemmingway. As I finished my first monologue, applause roared throughout the theatre, and I watched the Megaphone Show do their magic.

These guys and gals are brilliant. Each scene you get completely transported into each of the comic's worlds. They picked out small details of my stories and turned them into a festival of the sublimely absurd. The audience (including myself) couldn't help but to laugh as the stage constantly transformed as the stories flowed freely as the Mississippi river running through the city.

Once they were done with their first improv performance I came back on and did my second monologue. This process was repeated all night. I couldn't believe that I was part of this amazing process. Not only was I a part of the evening's entertainment, I was the focal point. It was amazing.

Performing in this capacity and just the simple fact that The Megaphone Show exists is a testament to the rich cultural landscape of this great city in which we live. I am honored to be a part of this landscape especially coming from such humble beginnings. Its hard to believe that at one point in my life my dreams consisted of getting a good job at the port, getting married and having kids with my then girlfriend. Oh the things that can happen when you embrace the power of psychedelic drug use. These monologues became a marker of my transformation into the person I am now. I do not regret any of those experiences because they have turned me into the man that sits before you today.

I will revisit the Megaphone show as a spectator, and I hope to one day return with newer, funnier stories of events of my more recent past. I sincerely thank everyone involved with the show, and I feel as if it has ignited an entirely new performance fire within myself. Its amazing how big the world can be once I stepped outside my small, self-imposed circle of life. Thank you Chris Trew, and thank you Megaphone Show. You have introduced me to a new part of myself, and for that I will be forever in your debt.

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