I’ve just enjoyed playing the role of Cinderella for the second time at Stage One Theatre in Emba. Last time was ‘The Uglies’ Revenge’ – a sequel to the traditional story – so as with many things in my life, I’ve done it backwards. I’ve also played Fairy Godmother in a production at Ta Astra theatre – now a nightclub, I believe – and an unusual Buttons who ended up with Dandini in ‘Greaserella’, one of the Village Player’s fabulous musical-panto mash-ups that used to tour the village halls of Paphos many years ago. My brother in the UK has played Ugly Sisters for many seasons, and I learnt only this year that our mother once portrayed Baron Hardup! So a family tradition, although we’ve never actually appeared together.
This Cinderella rehearsal period was somewhat fraught, with cast members dropping out , breaking limbs, and struggling with the constant cuts of a script that started out about three hours long. But everything came together with the dress rehearsal and the run went beautifully. I had my own disasters: on the way to dress rehearsal I was waiting in a queue at a junction when the driver in front of me inexplicably suddenly moved into reverse and backed into me. An elderly gentleman, ironically gathering sticks at the side of the road, saw what was happening and waved and yelled, but I couldn’t reverse as there was a queue of cars behind me. Frantic beeping didn’t stop the car reversing into me with a bang. Fortunately he only mangled my number plate, as I had no time to stop and wait for police and insurance.
The first night was wonderful, but I woke up 2 o clock the next morning with a sore throat. I gave my body a strict talking-to that I could NOT be ill until after the last performance on Saturday night, bought a flask and filled it with some special throat-healing tea to sip backstage. On arrival at the theatre I discovered said tea had leaked all over my bag and script (just as well I knew my lines). I unscrewed the plastic bottom of the flask to see whether there was a crack in the glass – only to have the glass fall, with a bang even louder than that of the car crash the night before. I now faced a dressing room floor covered with broken glass and bare-footed ballerinas.
Speaking of footwear, or lack of: I’d conducted an island-wide search for shoes that resembled glass slippers (particularly the one on the poster) that fit, wouldn’t fall off my feet as most shoes do, that I could walk, nay, dance in, and that I could gracefully don in front of an audience. I went to one charity shop and explained my search before browsing the shelves. The shop assistant was just ahead of me, and it seemed anytime I spotted a potential pair of shoes, she grabbed them and put them in a bag. Eventually only the most unsuitable shoes remained on the shelves and I really wanted to look in that bag. “Are those shoes not for sale?” I asked. “No”, the lady replied “I’m saving them for a lady who’s playing Cinderella and needs some glass slippers”.
The Clothing Lounge had the perfect shoes in stock and the show went swimmingly. My cold hit with a vengeance the day after the final performance, but I can’t complain. I just need to recover by January 27th for the next show at the Emba Theatre: ‘Tell Me On A Sunday’, the Andrew Lloyd Webber one-woman musical.
Anyone want to buy a pair of glass slippers (one careless owner)?
Jezebel stars in ‘Tell Me On A Sunday’ 7.30pm at Stage One Theatre Emba on Saturday 27th January. 99967737 www.stageonetheatre.com