Sometimes you have to. Every few weeks I have been doing so with my original one-man stage show, The King is But a Man. I sadly haven’t found many chances to perform it beyond its 2015 debut. Plus, with my changing schedule and other projects, I’ve not has as much time to rehearse it in private as I would like.
I got to the point a few month’s ago whee I wondered if there wasn’t something I could do to improve it. It took me over a year to create in the first place, and I’d never flush it’s overall premise. But I got to thinking that if despite having no immediate “gigs” on the calendar to perform it the show hasn’t demanded, insisted, screamed out to be rehearsed in private on a regular basis, that there may be some aspect of myself that is unhappy with some aspect of the show. I asked if there was anything I could in theory do to the show to make it more exciting even to me.
In a few small areas, the answer was “yes,” and hence the tinkering.
Adjusting and reconsidering aspects of a show that very few people have ever seen is not easy. The easiest thing of course would be to leave it as it is, get back to rehearsing it exactly the same as always, and try (and try and try) to find somewhere to perform it. It would be one thing if I had the resources and network to have well-attended previews, and maybe some talk-backs, I’d have some momentum to adjust things. As it stands, I have only my only satisfaction and interest as motivation.
Yet we need that sometimes, as artists. We have to be willing to look into what we’ve created and ask if it truly satisfies who we are, and if not, if anything can be done about it. A novel, once completed, is generally a done deal, as are most “final” written products. But art itself is always changing, always reacting, always requiring an openness, and a refusal of dogma. As disappointed as I am with the outer success of this show so far, I am trying to at least embrace the opportunity to prove once again to myself that even our own work deserves an open mind from us.
Good luck with your art, with the show.