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A Day In The Life

I am an actor and writer.

No two days are the same.

That’s part of the lifestyle I accept and face-up to. Most people, I am sure, abhor routine, but I strive to find little routines amidst the randomness.

Take yesterday, for example. I was up with the lark - well, the chattering gang of long-tailed tits that seemed to have included my garden in their morning constitutional route. Ablutions completed, healthy fruity breakfast absorbed, I sorted through a few emails, scanned Facebook, chased a few unpaid invoices and was then ready for a good long sit-down in front of mindless television.

But, no! I slipped into my jogging attire and hit the streets - well, gracefully ran the fifteen minutes to my Pilates session. An hour later, after much groaning and fake-smiling, I jogged far less like an athlete back home. All this because I am in training to complete a charity run - five miles in mud, with various obstacles to surpass, for a local hospice. Seemed like a good idea at the time…

Shower and shave. Quick light lunch then to the tube for a casting in London. I spent the journey reading Stella Gibbons’ Cold Comfort Farm - have never read it and am now intrigued by its style.

The West End! Not many people realise it is littered with tiny rooms and spaces that producers and casting directors hire for the day to cast their latest projects. I had been instructed by my agent to attend the RADA Studios, near Goodge Street station. Once inside, name checked, smiles all round, I sat and waited. Jim, a grinning, bespectacled director, greeted me and I followed him downstairs into a basement room that had the distinctive aroma of old sweat. We chatted, then I auditioned for him. ‘Very funny’, he said. (It was supposed to be, but I don’t know if he meant it…) The footage will be handed to the producers who will decide whether I am suitable to play a maniac in a Business To Business instructional internet video.

Oh, the glamour.

I headed to the tube and back home. Different reading material this time. Henrik Ibsen’s classic play A Doll’s House which a colleague is aiming to direct late next year. He has told me to look carefully at a certain part and to let him know if I’d like to play it.

Home in time to eat before visiting my local cinema/theatre, which was showing Nebraska. Such a beautiful film.

That was yesterday. Today I am writing - editing the fifth draft of my play Voltemand And Cornelius Are Joyfully Returned.

Tomorrow I work - paid work! I am going to West Middlesex Hospital to assist CASC (no, I don’t know what it stands for, either) in their exam training for forensic psychiatrists. I play a variety of characters - some with health issues, some relatives of patients - which test the candidates.

It never stops. Thank goodness!

[Hope Theatre, Islington]

*Paul’s blog regarding the performance of Voltemand And Cornelius Are Joyfully Returned at the Hope Theatre, Islington, can be read in April 2014’s

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