Eva T. Made Vaudeville

Eva T. Made Vaudeville
New York, New York, USA
April 25
Reverend Mother (yes, for real!)
Interfaith Minister/Progressive Episcopal priest.Actress, poet, essayist; fitness freak/geek. Part time acting and dance teacher. Writer for various LGBTQ publications (from my bisexual perspective.) Bronze level competitive ballroom dancer.Extreme Cat Person.Native New Yorker who is madly in love with my city. Currently living in Dyker Heights, Brooklyn and missing Manhattan a lot. Married to my Beloved, the fair Lady Lucia, who works, with me, for the God Squad and for our feline employers, Alice and Gracie.Daughter of some-time OS blogger, Rosy Cheeks.

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MARCH 31, 2012 5:40PM

Show Biz, Sociology and Sadness

Rate: 5 Flag

We did the Fred Allen Show on Thursday night. My first show in over two years went very well, as far as our performances and the audience response were concerned. Afterward, though, there was some of what my Mama, Rosy Cheeks, calls "difficult sociology."

First, there was the uncertainty about whether we (the cast) would be going to the diner down the block for a post-show dinner. In all our years of performing together as a company, the post-show diner meal had always been a ritual for us - a way to celebrate the work we'd just done together, reminisce about past shows, speculate on future ones and just enjoy each other's company. But that was before the Artistic Director and Musical Director (both also actors) got divorced...I think everyone in the cast had the feeling that something was "different" because several of them asked me whether we were going to dinner (before, it had just been assumed and never thought of as MY decision). So, I said we'd go (with inner misgivings).

I pondered the idea of not going to dinner with Iggy and the others. I could just slip out of the auditorium and ride the subway to the Punk Princess' apartment (where I've been spending the night when rehearsing in Manhattan). But then the other members of the company might feel that I was snubbing them...and it might be even more uncomfortable for Iggy that way.

So, we went to the diner. I actually ended up spending most of the time talking with Iggy! (I think because the others weren't sure what to say to me).  Iggy and I talked about the food and how the show had gone and what scripts had been our favorites to perform in the past. All safe, superficial stuff.

When it was time to leave, I again thought about just getting on the subway but...Punk Princess lives in the same building as Iggy. I'd get there faster (and save a fare) if I rode with him in the car. So, I said, "I have an awkward question. Is it okay if I ride up with you?"

He said, "It's not an awkward question. Sure, it's okay."

Fortunately (from my point of view) there were others in the cast who needed rides, too, so we weren't alone in the car together, and Iggy dropped me off at the building before heading further uptown with another actor (which meant that we avoided the uncomfortable experience of riding the elevator together and getting off at different floors).

When we first agreed to end our marriage, I had this fantasy that we'd be like characters in a Woody Allen movie, where everyone keeps working together and having the same friends after divorcing. It didn't work out that way, I think, because Iggy was too hurt and angry to deal with me at all at first and, even after those intense feelings died down somewhat, he considered our divorce (particularly the fact that I'd instigated it and was in a relationship with a woman) an embarrassing reflection on him. I'm sorry he felt (and, presumably, still feels) that way. Iggy is super-smart, ultra-talented and all-around admirable. He's also very attractive, physically, and, for the right woman, would definitely be a "catch." The fact that he wasn't the right partner for me to spend my whole life with doesn't make him a loser...

I don't know whether we'll do more shows together. The show, itself was fun to do and our audience did enjoy it but...I don't want to make Iggy sad and I suspect that the experience was, essentially, a sad one for him, 'though he'd never tell me outright.

There was a long period of my life when I could never have imagined being "retired" as a performing artist. The cliche about theater being the artist's "life" seemed true for me. Now...I have to admit that I miss it when I'm away for a long time but there are things that are more important than work - even the most meaningful, creative work. One of them is living the most ethical life I can for whatever time I have left. I'm not always sure how to accomplish that, or which specific decisions will bring me closest to it, but I have to try.

I suspect that, if I don't do any more shows with Iggy, I probably won't do any more shows at all. We have all the same show biz connections around here and any Director who wants to cast me in something (as Fanboy did) will probably want to cast Iggy, too. So, will I or won't I? I can't know for sure right now, with the most recent experience so fresh and no immediate offers. I do know that, should such an offer come my way again soon, it won't be easy to decide. And maybe my decision (in whichever direction) doesn't matter much anyway...

May I do my best to do my best each moment of each day...

Blessings and well-wishes,

Eva T.

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Your last line says it all. I'm happy for you that you got to do the show in Manhattan but sorry that part was uncomfortable. I think you'll know which way to go when the opportunity arises again.
trilogy: Thanks. I hope I will make the right decision.
My ex came by a few weeks ago and we sat comfortably on the front porch and talked about things that had nothing to do with our old relationship, or our kids, or our divorce. Of course it's been 18 years! Time does heal all wounds. Sometimes it just takes a lot of time! You were very brave to do this show with Iggy as it is part of the healing process and helps everyone to move on. Yes to your conclusion: Here's to doing our best each moment of each day!
I'm not sure if this is fiction or not...the Fred Allen Show? How long ago was that? But I notice that when people talk about their divorces, and when it's not totally acrimonious, they almost always focus on the trouble the other person had with it. But Iggy sounds like he's more comfortable around you now than you are around him. Are you sure it wasn't the other way about from the beginning, and you were the one who repressed your feelings over the divorce, and maybe still are, while he dealt with it?

Just some observations.

BOKO: It's not fiction. I work with a theater company that does live re-creations of radio shows from the 1920s through 1950s. There are several other companies doing similar shows (that I know about). Not all of the scripts are still available but there are many that can still be found. I played Portland.
I don't think I "repressed my feelings" but perhaps Iggy is more comfortable around me than I am around him. I'm the one who left, which makes me the "bad guy."
Your sentiments are so admirable! I don't know if I could give up writing for anyone or anything. I wish you could talk to Iggy and maybe get a sense of what he really feels. I wish he could at least read this post, because here, in a totally unbiased way, you write so kindly about him and about why your relationship ended. Maybe if he could see that you truly mean this (because on OS, it's not like you're playing to a crowd who knows him), it might make him feel better.

I don't know, of course, but I just wish there were a way for you to continue doing something you love so much, without worrying about hurting someone you care about.
Alysa: Thanks for your admiration! See your PMs for a more detailed response but I will say, here, that the writer's muse is any easier mistress than the performer's. You don't need anyone else's cooperation or collaboration in order to write.
All you can do is do the best you can do everyday. I write this as I lay in my bed, now my own, and my ex-husband is in the used to be guest bedroom. Yep....married 20 years, divorced 5 and now living together because of economics. Sometimes I reflect and wonder how the fuck I ever got to here. You do whatcha gotta do. Oh my lord, I wish we were just performing together a couple of hours a night.
Barbara: Thanks for words of wisdom and understanding!