Tonight, I went to go see Hedwig and the Angry Inch out at Actor's Express. Pretty great show. I've got no real complaints about it, which is a huge accomplishment, given how close I hold that show to my heart. Everyone was top shelf.
I'm bound to be a little bit hard on Craig Waldrip since he played a part I've yearned to play for so long. Granted, you may not know this if you don't read certain high influence local arts blogs, but Hedwig is one of the two dream parts I claim. And, granted, if you were to take a look at me, you might not immediately think Hedwig. But it's such a beautiful and complex role to play. Especially to take the setting of the show, which is the opening night of Hedwig's "world" tour. At what point in the show does Hedwig begin to completely deteriorate? When does it become not merely an act playing upon her recent fame? Essentially, when does this become something special, and not just something that happens every night? That's one of the most interesting questions posed, from an artistic standpoint.
I love Hedwig because of the universal theme. I've said it a thousand times before, but one might look at Hedwig, this "slip of a girly boy from communist East Berlin," and say, "Wow, that life experience is so far removed from mine, there's no way I have anything in common there." But it's completely untrue. It's not about Hedwig. It's about loneliness. It's about trying to make contact at whatever cost. It's about sadness and hope and failure and inadequacy and everything in between.
I would love to play Hedwig one day, but I don't think that day will ever come for me. Sadly, I'm not a singer and I don't claim to be a great singer. That being said, though, I don't know that you even need to be a great singer to play Hedwig. You just need to attack the role with complete abandon. Just rest assured...if I did ever get the chance to play it, I would throw myself into it with fervor. After all, this is the best way that I've found to be the best you've ever seen.
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