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The Working Actor: Children’s Theatre

The Working Actor: Children’s Theatre

Episode 116: The Working Actor – Children’s Theatr e

It’s a little known fact that Theatrefolk’s own Craig Mason spent 15 years as a working actor. He has done it all from comedy, drama, musicals, commercials, TV and children’s theatre. We’re going to talk about his time touring Franklin the Turtle where he played Bear for the pre-school set. We’re also going to talk about why he left acting and has never looked back.

Show Notes

Episode Transcript

Welcome to TFP – The Theatrefolk Podcast – the place to be for Drama teachers, Drama students, and theatre educators everywhere.

I’m Lindsay Price, resident playwright for Theatrefolk.

Hello, I hope you’re well. Thanks for listening.

Welcome to Episode 116! You can find all the links for this episode at theatrefolk.com/episode116.

Today, we continue our Working Actor series on the podcast. What is it like to be a working actor? How did their choice of school help? What is it like to tour? What should you definitely not do?

And I am thrilled as always to welcome Theatrefolk’s own Craig Mason to the podcast. Hello!

Craig: Hello everybody!

Lindsay: So, it is a little known Theatrefolk fact that Craig actually spent fifteen years as a professional actor, a working actor, so that’s why you’re here.

Craig: I think that was a little known fact to the theatre community – not just the Theatrefolk podcast audience.

Lindsay: Okay. Well, that’s an interesting thing. We’ll get into that in a little bit. But, first, let’s talk about how you got started. What school did you go to?

Craig: I went to the University of Waterloo in Waterloo, Ontario, Canada. It’s not a place that’s known for its theatre program. I went there for math and computer science because that’s where I thought my calling was and I was in the coop program there. I ended up taking a few electives in the theatre department.

In my very first semester and my very first year, I got cast in one of the theatre department shows and had a blast – I wasn’t having a blast in math and computer science – and gradually, halfway through, I did about two years, I guess? I guess two school years. It took me three years to get through those because, like, I took a year off doing math and computer science stuff and then I transferred into the drama department and that’s where I got my degree.

Lindsay: What kinds of things did you study? Like, in terms of what kind of school was in for drama? Was it a lot of theory? A lot of practical? What was the focus?

Craig: It’s a liberal arts school which means that you’re going to be taking a lot of academic courses, too. So, I had to take electives. I took electives in economics, in history, in French. I took an elective in Cold War relations between the US and Russia.

Lindsay: Oh, boy!

Craig: Yeah. Actually, that one was kind of fun.

Lindsay: Okay. And then, what about your theatre classes stood out to you?

Craig: Well, the cool thing that happened actually in my department while I was there is they were trying to transform the department into something more than what it was. And so, they had brought in an outside director by the name of Joel Greenberg and he was coming from more of a professional background so it was really cool because he taught our acting classes and he would take one thing per semester and really focus on it. So, in terms of acting, I got a semester on Commedia dell’arte, a semester on farce, a semester on auditions. So, it was really valuable theatre training even though that’s not what it set out to be.

Lindsay: So, you left school and you were like, “I’m going to try and be a professional actor.” What was your thought process at the end of your university degree?

Craig: At the end of my university degree, I thought I was kind of set because, before I finished university, I already had my first job lined up for once university was over – an actual acting job that paid. So, yes, that was definitely the goal.

After university, I moved to Toronto which is the big center for theatre in Canada. It’s basically Toronto or Vancouver or Montreal. Toronto has, I think, the bigger theatre community, or it did at the time. I thought I’d just started working away in Toronto at becoming an actor.

Lindsay: What was that first job? What was your first professional gig?

Craig: Well, this is cool because my first professional gig was a year before. I was still in university. I was in my third year of university. Because of this guy, Joel Greenberg, he was directing a show at a professional theatre which is actually a really well-respected professional theatre called Theatre Aquarius in Hamilton. He was directing You Can’t Take It with You There and he needed a few guys because there are some smaller roles.

At the end of the second act, if you know the show, when all the chaos erupts, there are these G-men who come in, these FBI agents. One of them has some lines, and one of them has two lines, and one of them has one line, I think, and I think I was the guy who had the one line. But he needed the non-equity and those are non-equity roles. Those are not roles you’re going to cast a full professional union member with so it was just a fantastic opportunity of being in the right place at the right time. The other guy who was in my program, we cast as one of the other G-man roles, he had a car and you needed a car to get to this job because it was not in the same town that our university was so it really was a fortunate lucky experience for me.

Lindsay: What did you learn from that? What was the difference to you from being on a professional theatre set than being in your class?

Craig: Oh. Well, it was wild because, when we walked in to the first day of rehearsal, if there were stairs in the show, there was a mock-up set of stairs on the rehearsal deck. If there were props needed for the show, there were, you know, maybe not the final props but there were rehearsal props there. You can’t take it with you. There are some cats I think. I think it was cats – the animal, cats, real live cats – and they had baby kittens there for the actors who were going to be interacting with the cats so they became good friends throughout the rehearsal process. We had kittens, too.

Lindsay: So, when you walked in and you saw all this, what was your thought about this is what professional theatre is like?

Craig: I thought it was awesome because, well, I’ll you why – because that show is a show about characters, you know? Everyone is really quirky. Everyone’s a real character actor so it was basically, oh, how big is that cast? It must be something like at least a dozen to fifteen people and it was so much fun because everyone was these quirky oddball people. I’m kind of a quirky oddball people myself so I really felt like I fit in and they really were very generous and kind.

There were people in that cast; there was one gentleman in the cast, I think he was fifty or sixty years deep into his professional theatre career. You know, these were not amateur performers. These were seasoned pros and they were kind and they were generous to us little guys and I felt very embraced and I felt like I could speak to anyone about anything. I never felt like, “Oh, don’t speak to Miss So-and-So because she’s having a bad day,” and I think that’s how Joel puts his companies together. I got to do another show with him later too and it was a very similar experience. Just great people and so it was a great introduction for me.

Lindsay: So, you went on and you lived in Toronto. What was the life of a Toronto working actor or trying to be a working actor? What was that like?

Craig: For a long time, it was a lot of fun because it was still back in the day where audition notices were posted on call boards and you actually had to go somewhere to get the audition notices. So, you know, I just kind of made a game out of it and I kind of systematized my approach to how I was doing it. I would make sure I would get up. I would always go to, I think there were two or three different places that you could go to for the audition notices. And so, I would go. I would get the audition notices, jot them down, and I would go right home and I would either call or mail my resume in. I wanted to look like I was, you know, on the ball and ready to go. I think that it was a really fun experience and it was nice getting out to those physical locations because I met other people like me, too. You’d always see the same people at these places. So, I felt like I was part of a community.

Lindsay: How long did it take you to get an agent?

Craig: Oh. That’s a good question. It was a couple of years. I tried really hard when I first got to Toronto and nothing came of that. And then, I think I maybe gave up for a year or two. I’m going to say it was at least two or three years in Toronto. Do you remember?

Lindsay: I don’t. Was that frustrating?

Craig: No, it wasn’t frustrating because I wanted to do theatre and I wasn’t a union member at the time so I was going out for non-equity stuff anyway and those auditions were really easy to get. So, to me, it wasn’t a huge deal that I didn’t have an agent because I didn’t feel that they would have that much to offer me anyway and, to be frank, I didn’t have that much to offer them. It always feels like the agent is hiring you but, really, it’s the other way around. You’re hiring the agent and their work is going to be easier if you’re an established performer. So, it’s a bit of a Catch-22 because it’s hard to get that experience but you kind of need that experience in order to make it worthwhile to form a team with an agent.

Lindsay: One of the things that you spent a long time doing was a children’s tour.

Craig: Yes.

Lindsay: And it was one show, right? That you did for a long time.

Craig: Yes, I auditioned for a lot of children’s companies but I always looked a bit older and they were usually casting people who looked like kids. I always looked older. So, yes, I did one big children’s tour. It was the very first live production of these beloved books called Franklin the Turtle – well, they were and they still are.

Lindsay: I know.

Craig: Yes. But, at that time, they were only a series of a few books. Now, it’s become a TV show and I think there’s a million books. But we were the first live people to go out and do the show. It was with a company called Touring Players of Canada and he was a great, great, great artistic director, Norbert Kondracki, because what he would do is he would go out, he would get his ear to the ground, and find out what the popular books were out there. He would talk to librarians, he would talk to schools, and so he would find out. Franklin the Turtle is becoming really popular in the libraries. He would contact the author, he would contact the publisher, and he would get permission to adapt their scripts into a show.

The other great thing he did was, even though he was hiring non-professional actors, he treated us like professionals.

Lindsay: Well, not non-professionals but non-equity.

Craig: Sorry, yes, non-equity. We weren’t union members. He wasn’t hiring union members but he treated us pretty darn close. I would say little difference between the way I was treated on that tour and the way I’d been treated in any other professional production.

Lindsay: Do you remember your audition for that?

Craig: I believe I did a… it was probably a monologue. You were always doing monologues. I auditioned for a lot of children’s theatre.

Lindsay: Do you have to prepare a different kind of monologue for a children’s show than if you’re doing a “regular” show? It seems the wrong word to use.

Craig: For sure. You’re not going to go into your audition doing your deep dramatic monologue from your Mamet, your Neil LaBute, or anything like that.

Lindsay: What do you think they’re looking for in a children’s theatre tour? Well, children’s theatre play.

Craig: That’s a good question. A lot of times, they actually ask you to go in and tell them a story. So, if it was a monologue, I would pick something that was more storytelling, something that was physical, something I could do something physical with. And then, of course, all of the other things you’re looking for in an audition – a clearly defined character, a beginning, a middle, an end, a change in the course of the character.

I guess I’m not auditioning anymore, I can say the monologue I used to do all the time. I used to do this all the time. It’s a great piece and it’s actually from Sunday in the Park with George and it’s a monologue that was actually cut from the show but, if you buy a copy of the script, it’s in there as an appendix. It was great for children’s theatre because it was about him, the artist, thinking back as a young person and how he would be fascinated with the light on the street and he would go out and he would run around the streets and trying to record everything that he saw. So, it was very active and it was very apropros, I thought, to children’s theatre which is all about energy and discovery.

Lindsay: It’s really interesting, I think, that, you know, particularly if you go away to school, that there’s all this time spent with the classics and with creating these in-depth characters. But I think quite a few young performers, they get out of school and children’s theatre is the thing that they do, you know? Why is that?

Craig: Because those are the roles that are available to us.

Lindsay: Yeah, true enough.

Craig: Certainly, when I was coming out of school, there was a lot of theatre for young audiences activity. I don’t think there’s quite as much now – the grants have dried up – but that was what was available to us and, as I mentioned before, they were often looking for…

Lindsay: Young performers.

Craig: They were often looking for people who could play kids and so you’re going to be looking for younger actors and they were also professional companies. They were paying salaries and so, you know, they also expected a certain level of skill. So, you know, a fresh university graduate was right up their alley.

Lindsay: Now, the role that you played in Franklin, you were a bear, right?

Craig: I was Franklin’s best friend.

Lindsay: Franklin’s best friend.

Craig: Bear.

Lindsay: Bear?

Craig: Yes.

Lindsay: And you guys all had to perform in full costume. You were the animals. You weren’t actors playing the animals. You were supposed to be the animals.

Craig: From my understanding, the agreement they had with the publisher was that we would look as much like the characters in the drawings as possible. It was basically like the costumes you would see at Disney World; it was just a full body costume. When I was Bear, it was fur mitts, fur on my feet, and a big huge full mask that went over my head which is great for Disney World but it was quite a challenge to act in because I think, when we first got the masks, they didn’t have any space for the mouth. There was no ability for the sound from our mouths to escape so we kind of sounded like this.

They eventually cut holes in there and I was lucky because I grew a beard for the show and my beard hair kind of looked similar to the costume so, unlike the other actors, I didn’t have to wear a chin strap. I think some people also had to wear a chin strap then once they opened up the mouths. It was really warm and they were uncomfortable. But it’s the type of thing you really kind of get used to after a while.

Lindsay: I was going to say, like, how do you act in it? Like, how do you communicate anything to an audience?

Craig: Well, you have to be big, you have to be larger than life, you have to be very physically expressive which is another reason that it was so warm in there because we were moving a lot and we were on-stage and we were under stage lights. And so, those challenges were there. I wouldn’t want to do it again today. But it was fine then. I didn’t really mind.

Lindsay: Were you mic’d?

Craig: Sometimes, we were mic’d. It depended on the theatre but, as a rule, no.

Lindsay: What were those audiences like that you played for? What is a children’s theatre audience like aside from loud and crazy?

Craig: It was loud and crazy. No, they were okay, and it depended on the day and it depended on the size of the venue. What was great about this particular tour is that, for the most part, we weren’t performing in school gymnasiums which, if you’re doing a children’s tour, you’re usually performing in school gymnasiums. But he would rent out every theatre that he could get his hands on so I got a great opportunity to play, I performed in pretty much every theatre in the entire province of Ontario because of this show so it was a great experience.

How are the kids? They were fine. It’s a real adjustment to get used to from doing shows for adults because they are very immediate, they are very expressive. If they don’t like it, you’re going to know; if they’re loving it, you’re going to know; and both of those reactions are going to be loud.

But a great tip that was told to us in that show was that, if the kids start getting out of hand and if it starts getting really, really, really loud in there, you’ll never ever ever overspeak them. You’ll never be able to speak loud enough for them to hear you so, what you do is, you do the exact opposite. You just start talking quieter and quieter and quieter. Soon, the whole situation will start policing itself because people will want to hear so they’ll either shut up to listen or they’ll tell other people to be quiet. That was actually quite an effective technique. We used it many, many times.

Lindsay: A children’s theatre tour is not the same as performing a night show. What is a typical day like on tour?

Craig: Typical day for me for that tour, now, the nice thing is Toronto is very central. A lot of times, we were just performing within driving distance of Toronto so I’d usually have to get up at around 6:00 in the morning – yes, in the morning – and you’d have to take the subway to the meeting spot and then, from the meeting spot, you’d drive to the venue. And then, while you’re at the venue, you have to unload the van.

Lindsay: You have to unload the van, right? There’s nobody doing it for you.

Craig: There was no crew, no. We were the crew. We unload the van. We set up the set. And then, we actually had a tour manager slash stage manager. She was in-charge with coordinating the lighting with the venue and coordinating the sound. But, sometimes, I think you have to do that, depending on the type of tour. And then, you do the show and then you have, like, a half an hour break and then you do the show again and then you have a half an hour break and then you do the show again.

Lindsay: Oh, my god.

Craig: Yes, we were often often often doing three shows a day. And then, you’d pack the van up, drive back to the meeting spot, take the subway home, have some dinner, and pass out.

Lindsay: How long was the show?

Craig: The show was about 30? 40 minutes long?

Lindsay: Wow. So, that’s a full performing day.

Craig: Yes, we would often do 15-show weeks. Again, he was very fair because, if we did over a certain number – I think 12 – then he would pay us extra so we’d often make a lot more money than we were even promised.

Lindsay: Wow.

Craig: And, if we were on tour, if we were away from home, he would always put us up in a decent hotel. From my understanding, that is not what you always get. He stuck with one chain of hotel that was everywhere and it was a decent clean hotel. There were only two people to a room. There was five of us on tour – four actors and the tour manager. The tour manager got her own room and then the four actors split up – two in one room, two in the other – so we always got our own bed. When we needed to cool off from one another, there was always space. There was always a place to go.

Lindsay: Well, let’s talk about that for a second. If you go on tour, because you did this show not only all over Ontario, you went out to another province – you went out west.

Craig: Yes, we eventually went out and did a month in British Columbia.

Lindsay: So, what is tour relations like? What is it like to be in the same places with these same people in a very tight, tight confined space like a van or in a hotel room? What is that like?

Craig: First of all, this is in the time before cellphones, before iPods, before we could just completely zone out. As I understand it now from talking to people who have toured, everyone just gets in the van and gets on their phone or their iPod and just zones right out. We did not have that luxury because I’m old and those things didn’t exist then.

Lindsay: “What’s an iPod?”

Craig: Exactly! So, we kind of had to talk to each other.

Lindsay: Oh, my god, conversation?

Craig: And, you know, you get five people into a van together for four months, there were conflicts here and there, but we were always able to resolve them, I think.

Lindsay: Good. You know, this is the other thing I wanted to talk about with small confined spaces. I remember seeing this show and your set was pretty involved. The whole idea that that was able to break down and actually fit in a van always sort of surprised me. Was there, like, an IKEA floor plan that you had to learn how to pack a van?

Craig: No! See, that was part of rehearsal. So, towards the end of rehearsals, they brought the set, they brought the van and said, “Okay. Now, you’re going to practice loading up the van.” You know, there was no map on how to do it. So, for the first few weeks, it was really tight, you know? Barely got the door closed on the van. But, as you go along, and I have this brain, I love putting stuff in the fridge, I love packing the trunk of the car.

Lindsay: Yes, I do not pack the trunk of the car.

Craig: So, eventually, by the end of the tour, you could have fit a hot tub in the back of that van – we had so much space. But it’s just like, you know, you’re just doing it several times. You know, I said that we did three shows a day. Sometimes, those three shows would be in two different venues too. Sometimes, it would be two shows and then a lunch break and we’d drive to a different place and start up again. So, we got really good at packing that van. It became – I don’t know – it became a lot of fun. Some of the set pieces were heavy, but you kind of got used to, if you’re lifting up the same thing every day, it got easier.

Lindsay: Now, as we sort of end this, you had a really lovely run as an actor. Would you agree? Do you think so? Do you disagree?

Craig: I’m very proud of everything that I did in my entire career.

Lindsay: Perfect! Okay. But you don’t do it anymore.

Craig: No.

Lindsay: You walked away from being an actor.

Craig: Yes.

Lindsay: And, as far as I can tell, you’re pretty proud of that, too. You’re pretty happy with that decision.

Craig: What I’m happy about is that I love Theatrefolk and I love what we do and I love the people that we meet, and that has replaced the love of theatre that I had when I was acting. The great thing about Theatrefolk is I can do it every day; acting, I couldn’t. I didn’t have that game of acting. I didn’t have the drive that made me want to just continue contacting people and networking and connecting with people. That’s where I really fell apart as a performer with the business end, I guess.

Lindsay: And I think that’s really interesting because it’s very specific that I wanted to talk to you, to talk to Craig, as our sort of wrap up of our Working Actor series because each of the three actors who we’ve had beforehand – Marty Moreau and Steve Ross and Heather McGuigan – that’s what stood out to me above all else was that they like the game.

Craig: I remember there’s one actress in Toronto who I’d seen a few times and I never really thought that she was as special as she was to get the number of roles she did until I talked to someone who had worked with her and they said, “You know what? Every single break, every single lunch, she is working on the phone to her agent, to directors, to producers.” She is constantly working at getting roles and it suddenly made sense. That’s how you get roles. You’ve got to constantly work at it. Even when you already have a job, you have to be constantly working on the next job. That’s where I failed as a performer. I couldn’t do that.

Lindsay: Well, you don’t like it.

Craig: I can’t stand it. I can’t stand schmoozing.

Lindsay: It’s not necessarily a failure if you can look at it and you can acknowledge that you don’t like it and, if you don’t like it, you’re not going to do it and, if you’re not going to do it, then something has to be done. You have to make a choice.

Craig: You’re right. Steve, Marty, and Heather all talk about how much they love doing that stuff.

Lindsay: Steve really said this is a business where you’re selling yourself and I think, for anyone out there who’s listening to this, who is a beginning actor or has beginning actors; that is the thing that, above all else, you know, talent and ability are key. But, if you don’t have a drive to do that – to get the jobs yourself, to work yourself, to be your own sort of marketing agency – then you really have to think long and hard about this job, don’t you?

Craig: For sure. The mistake I think I see a lot of kids make is that it’s not that you want it. It’s not that you’re going to work hard at it. It’s that you are working hard at it. It’s that you are doing this and it is a 24/7 job. The successful people, the successful actors, the people you see on TV, they are working it hardcore 24/7. It’s an illusion when you see them at the Oscars. It’s an illusion when you see them at the Emmy’s. Those are not fun times for them. Those are hardcore working hours for them. When they’re on that red carpet, they are auditioning for their next roles. They are playing characters. Any time you see an actor who is working a lot, it is the result of a lot of drive on their part. Talent for sure, but also the work hustle. If you don’t have that, if you aren’t right now, if you’re in high school and thinking of becoming a professional performer and you’ve never contacted even your local community theatre, you haven’t contacted any local summer stock companies who might hire you over the summer to intern or to play a small role or to help out with props, if you haven’t done that then you’re already far behind because that’s what you need to be doing – even in high school. You need to get that habit of getting out there and just constantly being in people’s faces. That’s how you become a successful actor.

Lindsay: And it’s not even about it as a punishment, I think, and I have to tell you, the other three – Marty, Steve, and Heather – are they or are they not the three nicest people in the world? In the professional actors that we know.

Craig: They’re certainly among the three greatest people that I ever worked with and I would work with, I would do a show with the three of them in any time.

Lindsay: And so, it’s not about being – bitter is not the right word that I’m looking for; “hard” I guess is the word I’m looking for – it’s not about that, but it’s a part of the job. If you want to be a working actor, the business hustle is part of the job.

Craig: If you want to be an actor, I think you should take a business class or marketing class, actually, and consider yourself as a product and develop a business plan, a marketing plan for yourself.

Lindsay: My last question was going to be what do you think, if you want to be a young actor, the thing to do? And I think you’re right. I think that it’s not just the dancing, the singing, and the acting, and we’re talking about being professional. Like, if you want to get out there and make this your job, and that’s the other thing I think that a lot of beginning students mistake, that they have so much fun with being an actor in school that they miss that little thing where this is actually a job. If you want to make it your job, having a marketing class under your belt would be an excellent thing to do.

Craig: Yeah, how to write a cover letter, how to write a resume. Actually, that served me well because, when I was in coop in university, we had to take these classes each week on resumes, on cover letters, on interview skills, and that actually served me well when I began my career.

Lindsay: And then, if listening to this, you’re starting to think, “This isn’t my cup of tea,” I think it’s important to not think of it as a failure. Like, you said, “I failed that way as an actor,” I don’t think you need to think of it as a failure; you need to think of it as a choice, and making a choice to leave a profession like acting, people always see it as, “Oh, they couldn’t cut it,” and I’m not sure that’s right at all. I think it’s all about the choices that you make and I look at the choice that you made, Craig, and, from my outside perspective, and that’s always been a question that I’ve asked because, you know, quite frankly, when Theatrefolk, we moved in a new direction and that was one of the first things that happened – we moved away from the center where you could work. I always was like, “Is that going to be okay? Is that going to be okay?” and this choice that you made seemed to be okay with you.

Craig: But the hard part about leaving a profession like that is that I don’t feel like I ever really made a final “I’m gone.” I mean, there are no ties to sever. There’s no job to quit. If a director I had worked with previously called me and offered me something, I’d probably take him up on it. It’s not like leaving your job at IBM. You just don’t put yourself out there anymore. So, I guess I don’t want to say I’m on the fence, but I’m certainly more than satisfied with what we’re doing and, if I never step on a stage again, I’ll still be happy and have led a fruitful, fulfilled life.

Lindsay: Awesome. That’s what we want to hear.

Okay. So, as we wrap up here, just with our other podcasts this month, if you want in on the written reflection and listening quiz for this Working Actor podcast and this Working Actor series, make sure you join our email list. You can get the link in the show notes for this episode – theatrefolk.com/episode116.

So, before we go, let’s do some THEATREFOLK NEWS.

It’s a play feature! It’s a play feature! It’s time to feature a play! And I think it’s only right that we use the Theatrefolk news slot today to talk about a children’s play and one that Craig has written.

So, Craig adapted The Tempest into modern English. Craig, you and I actually toured this show in a former life because not only did you do children’s tours on your own, Theatrefolk used to be a production company and we used to tour very small but we did do some tours.

Craig: How do you feel about leaving the world of being a production company?

Lindsay: Being a production company? Oh, there was never a better decision I ever made in my whole entire life. Oh, my goodness. I was not meant to act and I was not meant to tour children’s theatre.

We did a Romeo and Juliet and as a shadow puppetry and we did The Tempest with a life-sized puppet for Caliban that we recycled. We did another children’s show called Joe Mufferaw and the Nipissing Fling and we turned that big puppet into Caliban.

Craig: Okay!

Lindsay: That’s where Caliban came from! So, we’re going to read a little bit from The Tempest where we first meet Caliban.

PROSPERO: I thought I told Caliban to come fetch us some word. Caliban! Caliban, I say!

CALIBAN: Grumble. Grumble. Grumble.

PROSPERO: Caliban, come out here this instant! You know we’re out of wood.

CALIBAN: There’s wood enough!

PROSPERO: There’s no wood at all. I see none.

CALIBAN: A southwest wind blow on ye and blister you all o’er!

MIRANDA: Now, Caliban, be nice.

CALIBAN: I must eat my dinner. This island’s mine, by Sycorax, my mother. You took this island from me! When you came here, you were nice to me. You gave me water with berries in it and taught me the names of the stars and so I like you and showered you with all the secrets of the island. But then, you made me your servant. All the charms of Sycorax, toads, beetles, bat, light on you!

MIRANDA: Oh, you know that’s not true. You were just a monster when we came here and could not even talk. Why, Caliban, I did spend many hours with you teaching you how to speak. You were taught all the words for everything.

CALIBAN: Yes, you taught me how to speak and I thank you. Now, I can say this to you, “The red plague rid you for learning me your language!”

PROSPERO: Get us some firewood.

CALIBAN: Ha!

PROSPERO: If you do not do what I command, I’ll rack you with old cramps, fill all your bones with aches, and make you roar that lions will be afraid of the noise.

CALIBAN: He speaks the truth. I must do what he says. Prospero is much more powerful than I. Grumble. Grumble. Grrr and grumble again.

Lindsay: So, that’s The Tempest and I will put a link to that in the show notes. Literally, I’m sitting here… Now, Craig and I used to do these shows…

Craig: Speaking of professional, do I get paid for this?

Lindsay: I’m literally sitting here going, “Okay, there were two of us, there were three people in that scene, and you played Prospero. Where were you on-stage?”

Craig: I know. How did we do that?

Lindsay: I don’t know! Now, I know we used a lot of puppets. Like, later on…

Craig: But Caliban wasn’t a puppet, or he was a puppet but he was life-sized.

Lindsay: But you had to get into him and I played Trinculo and Stephano, and I did those as two different puppets. Well, I think that’s just going to have to be a mystery of the past.

So, that’s The Tempest.

And now, finally, where, oh, where can you find this podcast? Where can you direct students to find this podcast? We post new episodes every Tuesday at theatrefolk.com and on our Facebook page and Twitter. You can find us on YouTube.com/Theatrefolk and you can find us on the Stitcher app. You can also subscribe to TFP on iTunes. All you have to do is search for the word “Theatrefolk.”

And that’s where we’re going to end. Take care, my friends. Take care.

Thank you, Craig.

Craig: Take care.

Music credit:”Ave” by Alex (feat. Morusque) is licensed under a Creative Commons license.

Products referenced in this post: The Tempest

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