The entire theatre was breathing with me, I could feel it alive under my feet. The laughter was contagious, I found myself smiling through the entirety of the scenes that had just been acted. It made me feel further pride of my crew and their natural skills at what they did. The blackouts seemed a problem of the past now, overcome, and James was doing an excellent job. Craig had opened the show very well, it set the general mood for the rest of the panto. Eve's improvisation was great, I wasn't expecting it to turn out so great. They had set the bar high, and it was just fair for the rest of the crew to deliver to our audience and meet their high expectations.
"Cara, it's your turn on the spotlight." Jenna announced.
I was ready. The nerves always broke away from me when the audience was truly enjoying what we worked and lived for. I stood on the right side of the stage, ready to make my appearance. I adjusted the long, red Chinese shirt and my boots, when the limelight glowed before me. It was time.
"Hello everybody!" I greeted with a beaming smile. I walked to the centre and extended my arms. "My name's Aladdin, and I live here in the village with my mother Twankey and my brother Wishy-Washy."
I paraded around the stage with both hands behind my back and sighed. "But PeKing is such a dull place to live, there is nothing to do; I often wish something exciting would happen but, nothing ever does."
I shifted my view to the audience, hoping they were following each word I said, enthralled by the beautiful story we were performing. They were, especially the children, who were all on the edge of their seat with a big smile plastered on their cute little faces. This was the best part of the job, to have a child beaming at you and waiting for you to carry the story on.
"The police are after me again. I'm in terrible trouble with them because I parked my rick shaw on a double yellow line," I lowered my voice to a mysterious-sort of whisper, "and I wrote rude words on the Great Wall of China, it was part of my plan to get back at them. However, those pranks are not exciting me anymore. So, I had an idea! Do you know what I'm going to do next?"
I waited for the kids to shout their answers, several of them were encouraging me to tell them. I stood importantly before them and said triumphantly. "I'm going to sneak in to the palace gardens and have a look at the princess; everyone's talking about how beautiful she is. Let me be the judge of it."
I began to walk off to where I entered the stage.
Offstage, the one playing Widow Twankey shouted, "Aladdin! Aladdin! Where are you, you lazy good for nothing?"
I froze on my steps and let my mouth hung open in exaggerated surprise. The audience was laughing at my face. "Sounds like mum's on the war path. I'd better scarper." I began trotting on my place and waving at them, before saying, "See you later folks!"
I exited the stage right.
I found Jenna waiting there with a thumbs-up. "Great job director, as always."
"Thank you Jenna," I told her. "But we should congratulate each other when the show is over. Great job everybody, let's keep this up!" I told the rest of the group. "Everybody is doing great tonight."
The pressure was gathering; when I was on stage, I caught sight of some of the best performance agents from town. Were they here to find some talent among the members of my crew, and asked them to join theirs? I couldn't worry about that right now, we had a show to finish. However, that gnawing feeling didn't left the pit of my stomach.