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Beer!
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Peter Lord - Actor

Well, it's over. Once and for all. Until hopefully we run it at the Buxton Fringe Festival in the summer. Where did that time go? Only two weeks ago we started rehearsing full time (up until that point we'd only done one day a week for the previous 3 months) and now here I am and it's all behind me. I was lucky to get the opportunity, which should have been unavailable to an actor as inexperienced as myself but I tried to make the most of it. And the consensus appears to be that I didn't do too bad a job. Let's hope that, as well as being a vastly entertaining time in my life, this is also a platform from which to move to other things and advance my career on stage and screen, as well as returning with Kobal as and when required.

I remember saying some time ago that I had no ambition to be a stage actor. I think that this predominantly remains the case but I can't deny that I enjoyed it all immensely. I also suppose I can't really draw many conclusions until further down the line when I've sampled both mediums to a significant degree. Please all keep your fingers crossed that some agent somewhere will have taken pity on me and my performance and have seen some talent and potential somewhere within me that until recently I was scarcely able to see myself. As much as anything else, this production was about proving to myself that I could make it as an actor. And I've done that. I've surprised myself by performing to a standard I never knew was in me. Which is why I think I'll be so gutted if nobody's interested in representing me - I advertised myself well and I'm not sure what more I can pull out of the hat in future as I gave it my best and a half. I won't give up though, now that I've proven my capabilities to myself I can rest assured that I can do this for a living and have a ball at the same time.

My nerves suffered. Not being on stage for the first half hour of every performance didn't help. Like examinations I've experienced, it's more the anxiety of the waiting that outstripped that of performing once everything was underway and I was on autopilot and doing what I'd trained for. Even my monologue went swimmingly, a fact that in no small part must be attributed to audience energy (as well as a blinding spotlight that stopped me from being able to make out any faces in the crowd!).

The first night was witness to a handful of hiccups. Some idiot ran across stage during a scene change and broke a prop cup into two (yes, it was me). The prop telephone stopped working - cue some rather half-hearted acting on my part of "was that the 'phone ringing?!". There were no prop beers in the refrigerator at one stage, although I could still act the fact that it was broken with aplomb. For a gag when the Eastenders theme tune blared out of the TV set on one night I was left without the remote control to turn it off and had to throw myself at the television itself. Lines were forgotten and, somewhat frighteningly, added! Improvisation to confuse fellow actors was regularly employed (I must admit to indulging in a little myself!) with varying degrees of success. Wry smiles were shared. Gonzo got beaten up. Brian Blessed was mentioned in jest. Mobile telephones were hurled and smashed into pieces and a pink elephant costume was left stained, torn and stinking of congealed sweat. The audience laughed and cried (only not in the correct places) and some of them even enjoyed it nearly as much as did we who were involved.

I got some compliments along the way. Some about my beard (which is now in a bin somewhere!), some about my acting and some about other people who'd got me confused. It's all led me to believe that the three step plan is not beyond my reach - 1. Beer! 2. Lead in a top BBC drama. 3. James Bond! Well, what's the point of all this if I'm not going to aim high!

I'd like to do a shout out to all those who have supported me through these dark days and lightened them even a little. You were right when you said that it would all be worth it in the end! Thank you."

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