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  • Writer's pictureBroadway Beat

How to Be More Comfortable Making Strong Choices on Stage Even Though Your Parents Made You Choose in Court

Updated: May 9

by Kevin Burke. @ke7inburke.

Acting is an art form unlike any other. Although you’re given a script to follow, you’re expected to make each part your own by making strong acting choices on stage.

However, making strong choices may be hard for you if your parents once brought you to divorce court and made you choose publicly who you wanted to stay with for the rest of your childhood years. That’s surely a performance that will follow you for the rest of your life!

Here are some tips for working around that.

Pretend that it never happened. 

  • Just pretend. Imagine what it would’ve been like to not grow up weird. You never know, maybe that will work somehow.

Yell “I don’t want to stay with either of them! Not mommy, not daddy, no one!” 

  • This might not make sense in the middle of a production of Othello, but it will be a strong choice. That’s all that matters.

Cry a lot.

  • Still carrying that trauma around with you? Use it! People love when actors can cry on stage. Plus, with this type of emotion behind it, you’d be a lock for your first Tony. That’ll surely make up for having to see the sad look on Dad’s face when you chose Mom.

Ask if you could get an ice cream after. 

  • Just like how you asked your parents for ice cream all those years ago to mask the pain of what just happened, you can ask your director for ice cream too! Maybe they’ll be confused at first, but who doesn’t like ice cream? The worst they could say is “hell yes.”

Sell me this pen.

  • You want to sound more confident? Sell me this pen. You can’t cry if you’re too busy selling me this pen. I need to write, don’t I? How will I do that if I don’t have a pen? Sell me it using supply and demand. Forget about your parents, forget about performing, and close this deal!

Get over it.

  • Just get over it. Stop thinking about your parents’ brutal divorce proceedings on stage. It’s your line! Say something!!! Say something or no ice cream after!


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