Friday, December 4, 2009

Turns Out The Tuna Really Couldn't Sing...Or Act Come To Think Of It. (Best not to mention the dancing. Looks like my future career as a stage mum is tenuous at best.)

So the blessed school assembly is finally over and I am hiding in my house until the din of all the hysterical laughter over his disastrous costume dies down.

I have to admit the costume didn't actually look any more impressive from the back of the school hall - or even through a squint.  Shame I know all the other parents in the class because it didn't leave me the option of quietly disowning my child and my amateur efforts in costume design and construction.  Ex was spectacularly unimpressed and made a point of telling me point blank that next time we need to enroll the help of his art/production department to help diminish any future shame that my pathetic efforts bring upon our family...

As for Captain Underpant's performance, well let's just say it was as impressive as the costume.  So, distinctly lack lustre then.  What happens to my animated, energetic, enthusiastic child once he steps on stage?  It's as though he is in a stage-induced coma.  For the most part he did go through the motions - as if in a gormless trance.  For the rest of it he just looked like he was the understudy for Rip Van Winkle and was about to fall into a timeless slumber.

So probably not destined for a career on the stage then.  I won't be planning on putting all my eggs in the Scholarship For Drama School basket any time soon.

This is probably just as well.  I have the makings of an ambitious stage mother within me, I just know it, and it is better that beast remains dormant rather than being unleashed on society.  Ex is also A Type Super Competitive Dad and both of us sat there, desperately willing him to take the stage and SHINE.  I could feel the combined energy emanating from us to the stage.  Unfortunately, it seems our energy directing skills have a dodgy navigational system because they only seemed to impact the six children surrounding Captain Underpants, who to all intents and purposes appear to have graduated from RADA or the New York School of Music and Drama at the very least.

On reflection I feel a sense of shame at being so disappointed in his performance.  Part of me knows it's because I don't think it was a true reflection of his gregarious, outgoing nature and I am so enamoured with my gorgeous child that I want everyone else to be struck dumb with his brilliance.  But part of me knows that it's because I am vicariously seeking the limelight through my children.

I used to love drama as a kid and ached to be the star in every school production.  Not that I ever was.  Heavens no.  There were always far more talented children to choose.  But it didn't diminish my desire for it and I truly thought that, one day, I would be famous and then everyone - EVERYONE - would recognise the error of their ways during my amateur dramatic school years and eternally berate themselves for not being the one to put me in the spotlight.  Never happened of course.  It probably didn't help that my aspiration at the time was to be the next Sarah Greene.  You can't really call that setting your thespian sights high now, can you?

But still there is a part of me that firmly believes I have the makings of a star - well a Davina McCall-like star - within me.  And that this talent is so intrinsically part of my DNA that it almost beggars belief that this most prominant part of my DNA hasn't transcended a generation.

Seems I am probably not going to have the opportunity to live out that particular dream through my eldest son at least.

Just as well I had the good sense to have two potential proteges then.

As soon as they get home from school I'm going to get to work on Johnny Drama.  His assembly is still 2 weeks away.  Plenty of time to coach him so that he steals the show.

And in the meantime, this should be me being parodied by The Impression Show.  ME I tell you!


  1. Dear Stage Mother Supreme.
    I wish you much luck coaching Johnny Drama and hope he produces the Hollywood A-list performance that you so deserve.
    I look forward to reading all the rave reviews.
    With fond regards,

  2. I'm debating whether to get DramaBoy involved in my high school's spring musical, which is Seussical, because they do need some little Whos. But I, too, am afraid that my bright and brilliant boy will disappear once on stage and I wonder whether he'd be up for the strain of it all at the age of four...

  3. I was big into drama as a child and teen, and would love for the boys to like acting. But judging by last week, when we went to a Thanksgiving show, and every kid in the audience was hyper keen to be the one to go up on stage and participate except them, I don't think it'll be happening any time soon.....

  4. Our performances are this week and I fear the same. Keep you posted.

  5. I loved reading this. The thing with kids, I'm only just beginning to understand, is that they will perform when they're not meant to (Singing the Grand old Duke of York for 45 minutes on the bus, non-stop for example). And then being rendered mute and snotty when the relatives visit. This is scientific fact. Presumably these are the points at which we should just have something prepared ourselves....a Davina impression for instance might have really gone down a storm at the School Assembly. Or it might not, but you could have got your big break and...well never mind the tuna, surely it's every fish for herself in showbiz x

  6. My oldest is into being part of the stage crew. This means ferrying him to endless rehearsals. He confessed at one point that often he doesn't do much, but it's quite fun to hang out with his friends back stage. So we do the ferrying. He hangs out with his friends. And there's no visible outcome at the performance.

    Ane maybe you underestimate your son? Maybe he'd put a lot of time and thought into the role. Perhaps "the tuna who couldn't hold a tune" conjured up for him a morose, energy-drained, somber character, and the lack of extrovert drama was a perfect execution of the role.

  7. My children frequently remind me that they are NOT performing dogs. But we all live in hope...!

  8. I popped over after having spotted the title of your latest post on the dotterel's sidebar. I thought I would just stay a minute or two speedreading, but what has happened - I'm chortling away one minute and then feeling sad for you the next (re the post after this one) and I like it here very much. I will be back...

  9. Oh, I had delusions of grandeur too! Wrote about them in February - your post reminded me of it...

    Perhaps he found the role of tuna beneath him?


  10. I love the title of this post - thoroughly entertaining read

    Kate xx