Drama runs in the family.
My mother, for example, is prone to dramatic expressions and much poignant acting stints: especially when logic does not get her what she wants. My father, driven to extremes, sometimes does a dramatic disappearing act. He vanishes into his room and takes shelter with his books.
I have caught half of both the acting genes. I can throw a tantrum if I so desire, but often I prefer the exit route, rather quietly. Books are any day far better company than thundering human emotional upheavals. (Books also have a standing inclination to not bite from behind one’s back, not to interfere in one’s private business, never to indulge in malicious gossip, compare or contrast one with another human being…you get the flow. And unlike human relationships, you can change your book companion , as many as three every single hour, with no one running to the courts suing you for damages! Ha, now come and beat that!)
Well, we were into dramatics. So, the kids have got it too, true to the blood lines of yore.
The elder one, started out brilliantly, by persuading many school audiences that Brutus was an honorable man, as Mark Antony, in Julius Caesar. She then moved on to old Grand Father in “Dear Departed”, and married a merry widow, pipping many scandalized daughters, every other season. By the way, she wore her Taekwondo dress as Mark Antony’s Roman robe , complete with my old brown shawl as sash.(It is another matter that she reported excitedly that when Ceasar’s blood strewn shroud was removed and the wailing citizens gathered around, they noticed that Julius had never really changed his school uniform, complete with tie and badge, beneath his royal robes!)
On her Grandfather days, she would wear a flowery Bermuda to match the old geezer’s mood! By the time she did Jean Val Jean’s role in the Bishop’s Candle Sticks, I put my foot down. She was of the opinion that normal makeup would not capture the moodiness of the penitent convict and that something stronger, on the likes of coal powder, would be better for the true life enactment! Suffice it to say that no coal powder graced her white shirt on drama day! By the time she turned into the sly Gaston in “A Villa For Sale,” the little one got the drama bug too.
Acting meant lots of adulation, make up and dresses!( She forgot that it also meant learning dialogues by heart !)
In her very first play, she spent two hours agonizing over two roles she liked: one with exactly two sentences as dialogue and another with three. Her perceptive teacher thought different!
The last two days, my house has been resounding to a rather short tempered Jal/aka Water, practising her long, long, speeches as she conducts her dialogue with the Sun, the Mountain, the Air, the River and the Fish. This is apart from a very dramatic monologue to the end!
” I am boooooooredddd!” she drawls, very sincerely.
“You will get to put blue lipstick, blue eye shadow and in the last scene you can change them all to brown!” tempts her sister, as sly as Gaston himself.
” But Jal is a boy!”
” So what? You will be the centre of attention!”
” Air was sooooo nice. Blue flowing dress..!”
” And actually spoke just two sentences?”
” I am boooorrreddd, fed up, I want a change!”
” Now that is called- putting passion in what you say..”As the expert actress guides the younger one, the scene fades slowly.