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Hey Look At Me I'm Acting! - My First Stage Play Review

Updated on February 23, 2017
Nell Rose profile image

Nell has always wanted to Tread the Boards on Stage. Here's her review and findings of what its like to be on the other side of the curtain!

Jossy and me. Jossy has been with the Marlow Players for quite a long time, but has been acting for many years elsewhere. With her help and the other guys I think I may be just becoming an actor! lol!
Jossy and me. Jossy has been with the Marlow Players for quite a long time, but has been acting for many years elsewhere. With her help and the other guys I think I may be just becoming an actor! lol! | Source

Look at me I'm acting!

So, how did I get on with my first sojourn into local theatre? Well let me tell you! I haven't had so much fun since well just since! I have taken to acting like a duck to water!

Not that I am that good yet, but if enthusiasm makes you a genius then Einstein look out!

I love the way that we train, I like the other guys who are so professional they should be on a London stage earning tons of money. And I even like the Director who to start with scared the heck out of me! Lol! I was wrong of course, he is a nice guy really.

The one thing I will say about the Director is that he is fab at what he does. Why? I will let you know as we go through the rehearsals blocking and learning lines.

Me in my maid golf waitress costume!
Me in my maid golf waitress costume! | Source

The Rehearsals.

There are two ways to start rehearsals. Well two that I know of so far. The first is to sit down and read through your lines for a few weeks, then get up and start blocking (stand where you are told, move etc) then put the two together.

The second is how we learned this Play. We just got up and started acting from the get go. Taking our books with us. Seems like a great way to do it to me.

For the first few weeks we practice in the Studio. Which is full of costumes on the shelves, and fun stuff that we can use in the Play. But after a few weeks rehearsals we then go down to the Theatre and practise some more.

This is when it starts to get serious. And this is also the place where I was saying 'Thank goodness' for only having a small part in the Play!

Stage left stage right
Stage left stage right | Source

The Stage.

Let's take a look at the Stage. The first thing you see is obviously the main Stage. But there is so much more going on than that.

For starters you have Stage Left and Stage Right. That's what its called when people are told to come on from different sides of the Stage. Behind the back screen is a wall. And behind that there are a row of seats where the Actors who are waiting to go on, sit and read through their lines or check their costumes.

I actually sat there for nearly an hour, purely because it was soothing just listening to the actors voices and staring at the wall! lol!

If you are facing the Stage, on the right hand side, behind the curtains are all the tech crew and so on. And a couple of prompters just in case someone forgets their lines.

There is also the pit where all the electronics go on. And a guy sits there controlling various things such as curtains lights and so on. He is also in constant touch with another man who is placed at the back of the room behind the seats in the projector room.

The projector room is the same as the Cinema. There is a small window where he can look through to aim the lights in the right direction, as well as noises for the door bell, telephone ring and music.


I love acting. It is so much more real than life.

— Oscar Wilde
Preparing the Stage
Preparing the Stage | Source

Preparations for a Stage Play at the local theatre.


A week long rehearsal in the main theatre, and its all hustle and bustle. Doors have to be painted and rubbed down, the chairs, sofa and table have to be set up on the Stage, and there is copious amounts of other painting and polishing.

This is where all the 'Behind the Scenes' guys come in. They are so quick and efficient and all the props end up looking fantastic!

As you can see in the bottom photo there are lots of boxes being painted. They will all be put together to make a great set of steps to the 'upstairs'.

All the hard work is soon over and the Stage is soon set.

Preparations for a Stage Play!

Source
All you need in the dressing room!
All you need in the dressing room! | Source

The Dressing Room.

What can I say? Its just like you see on TV! A long line of mirrors with side lights. A bathroom with shower, toilets and dryers. And the main room has driers too. Makes you feel like a real actor!

On a personal note. I made the most of it. Along with the chocolates that the powers that be brought down for us to stuff before and after performance!

Its also a great place to chat and go through your lines without any pressure. I didn't need it really because lets face it, I only had about three lines! Yes I know.......!

Its great to see behind the scenes so to speak. I would imagine it being a bustle of activity if there were loads of girls trying to get changed in there. Luckily there were only a few of us so it was fine.

The Marlow Players in rehearsal
The Marlow Players in rehearsal | Source
The Marlow Players
The Marlow Players | Source

The Performance, curtain up!


As I already mentioned, behind the back wall/curtain is a row of chairs where we can sit and listen in to the performance. And of course you have to sit there while waiting to go on Stage.

In between the first and second act you can go back to the dressing room as long as you know when its your time to go on. You do have prompts but not all the way through.

Its a strange feeling waiting in the wings so to speak. You can't see the audience from the sides, only a small smidgen of stage. You can hear their voices, and the laughter from the audience, and this is when you start to get nervous.

Then you hear your key line as I like to call it. The one word, phrase or exit that is your cue to go on.

Luckily for me there were four of us due on at the same time. So no big panic there, but still the butterfly's wing their way through your stomach and up to your head!

Then your on!

Taking a deep breath you step onto that stage, say your lines and...exit!

But its not over. You wait for your next cue, and then off you go again. You don't look into the audience, if you did you would probably totally forget your lines.

In fact the one surprising thing about it is that you don't get to see the audience at all!

Two reasons, one being that its darker in the audience and the stage is so lit up it blacks everything out. And second by the time you have remembered and said your lines its time to go back behind the curtain.

But when the Play is over and we are all walking onto the Stage for the final Curtain call and bow, we can see them then! And boy did I have a huge grin on my face! Talk about fun!

But at the end of the day, Its not about the audience, or the other Players. Its about you.

Whether there was only one person in the audience or a hundred. Its the fun of the rehearsals, learning the lines and doing something awesome!

Simple as that! Would I do it again? Yep, in a heartbeat!

Acting is standing up naked and turning around very slowly

— Rosalind Russell

Well, do you want to be an actor?

See results

The Marlow Players

The Marlow Players after a Stage production a few years ago.
The Marlow Players after a Stage production a few years ago. | Source

© 2017 Nell Rose

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    • Nell Rose profile image
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      Nell Rose 7 months ago from England

      Thanks Shauna, much better thank you.

    • bravewarrior profile image

      Shauna L Bowling 7 months ago from Central Florida

      I hope you're feeling better, Nell.

    • Nell Rose profile image
      Author

      Nell Rose 7 months ago from England

      Hi Shauna, sorry it took a while to answer, not been well. the next play is this month but I am just helping out, but hopefully the next one will be a part for me. thanks for reading.

    • bravewarrior profile image

      Shauna L Bowling 7 months ago from Central Florida

      Nell, it sounds like you're having a blast. I don't think I could be an actor. I'd be too nervous and shy to perform in front of an audience. I found it interesting, though that you said you don't see the audience due to the lighting. I'm sure that's done on purpose as a way to ease stage fright on the part of the actors.

      So, when's your next play?

    • Robert Sacchi profile image

      Robert Sacchi 7 months ago

      Lawrence, that is a very funny anecdote. That is the first time I heard anything like that happening.

    • Nell Rose profile image
      Author

      Nell Rose 7 months ago from England

      Hi lawrence, LOL! your voice sounds like my singing voice too, lol! thanks as always.

    • lawrence01 profile image

      Lawrence Hebb 7 months ago from Hamilton, New Zealand

      Nell

      When I was in secondary school we did 'Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat' and I got the part of Jacob, that was amusing as I didn't audition for it, didn't want it, but my teacher told me I was the only one "big and daft enough" to play him.

      It was fun, but in the final rehearsal I sung so far out of tune that on the night they refused to give me the mike!

      I've always remembered doing the show, we also did 'Billy Liar' and Godspell!

      Great hub, and I'm glad you enjoyed it.

      Lawrence

    • Nell Rose profile image
      Author

      Nell Rose 8 months ago from England

      Hi Dianna, talk about jump in the deep end! LOL! thanks, yes its so much fun! and those other guys are really talented, thanks as always.

    • teaches12345 profile image

      Dianna Mendez 8 months ago

      Nell, you are such an adventurous soul and inspire many of us to reach for the impossible. I love your photos -- charming! Wilde's quote is humorous but real to the point. I would have loved the chocolates before hitting the stage. What fun you must have had performing with such talented people!

    • Robert Sacchi profile image

      Robert Sacchi 8 months ago

      You're welcome.

    • Nell Rose profile image
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      Nell Rose 8 months ago from England

      LOL! Thanks Robert! not seen that one! thanks for coming back.

    • Robert Sacchi profile image

      Robert Sacchi 8 months ago

      It gets better, the Russian gangster he asked promptly puts two rounds into a seat, inches from 007's crotch. The gangster says, "She's my mistress" and Bond says, "very talented girl." The gangster yells at his mistress to take a hike. She gives him "the Italian salute" before walking out.

    • Nell Rose profile image
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      Nell Rose 8 months ago from England

      LOL! Now I totally missed that! thanks

    • Robert Sacchi profile image

      Robert Sacchi 8 months ago

      There was the scene from Goldeneye when some women were practicing for a nightclub act. The woman was singing "Stand by Your Man", off key and in a Russian accent. James Bond asked "who was strangling the cat"?

    • Nell Rose profile image
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      Nell Rose 8 months ago from England

      lol! I think I will stick to acting, not singing. but I do remember the programme 'allo 'allo, the comedy about france in the war, and the main woman in the cafe sounded like a dead cat with a nail in its foot singing! LOL! it was really clever because she had a great voice really!

    • Robert Sacchi profile image

      Robert Sacchi 8 months ago

      You're welcome. Actors come is all voices. Keep in mind it is difficult for someone who can sing to sing as if they can't sing. There might be a role out there for someone who doesn't have a good singing voice. :-)

    • Nell Rose profile image
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      Nell Rose 8 months ago from England

      Hi Lizzy, its fun isn't it? lol! whatever you do, improv or learning lines, its good to do! thanks as always, and yes I would love to read it.

    • DzyMsLizzy profile image

      Liz Elias 8 months ago from Oakley, CA

      Brava, brava!! Well done! I don't think I could be in a regular play, as I really suck at memorizing. However, I had a blast in the improv comedy troupe, and I really miss those days!

      I've been on the behind the scenes side of plays, though not as part of the cast, and ..well, gosh; maybe I should write a hub and expound on that side of things. ;-)

    • Nell Rose profile image
      Author

      Nell Rose 8 months ago from England

      Thanks again, I didn't know that.:)

    • Robert Sacchi profile image

      Robert Sacchi 8 months ago

      Anne Ramsey roles included Mamma Fratelli in The Goonies.

    • Nell Rose profile image
      Author

      Nell Rose 8 months ago from England

      Hi Robert, no I don't think so? The voice comment was about singing, so as long as I stick to acting without singing I should be fine! lol!

    • Robert Sacchi profile image

      Robert Sacchi 8 months ago

      You shouldn't write an acting career off because of the voice. Do you know the story of Anne Ramsey?

    • Nell Rose profile image
      Author

      Nell Rose 8 months ago from England

      Aw thanks Savvy! and no, my voice is er, well goodish at the best, appalling at the worse! LOLOLO! but thank you!

    • savvydating profile image

      Yves 8 months ago

      Not only are you a wonderful writer and a lively personality, now you're an actor too? What's next? I wouldn't be surprised if you have a good singing voice as well!

      The pictures were marvelous. They really contributed to the feeling of excitement, and all the hubbub that constitutes live theatre. Congratulations on your first performance, Nell. You looked good up there, on the set, in your cute costume. Bravo to you!

    • Nell Rose profile image
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      Nell Rose 8 months ago from England

      Sounds amazing phoenix, I have a lot of catching up to do! lol! and thanks so much for coming back.

    • phoenix2327 profile image

      Zulma Burgos-Dudgeon 8 months ago from United Kingdom

      Where did I act? Well, let's see: a couple of plays in secondary school, a short stint with a theatre company in NYC, three maybe four productions since moving here and I was the stage manager for a play as part of the 500th-anniversary celebrations for Oliver Cromwell.

      Would I go back to it? I honestly don't know.

    • Nell Rose profile image
      Author

      Nell Rose 8 months ago from England

      Hi Audrey, its just a bit of fun, but its great! lol! thanks

    • AudreyHowitt profile image

      Audrey Howitt 8 months ago from California

      Look at you! You go Nell!!! Congratulations-and thank you for sharing this experience with us

    • Nell Rose profile image
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      Nell Rose 8 months ago from England

      Hi pheonix, lol! its still a bit like that! I only had a few lines so it was fine! where did you act?

    • Nell Rose profile image
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      Nell Rose 8 months ago from England

      LOL! no, the other guys have been there donks, so it would take me quite a while to get to their stage! LOL! thanks though Faith.

    • Nell Rose profile image
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      Nell Rose 8 months ago from England

      Thanks Chitrangada, glad you liked it.

    • Nell Rose profile image
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      Nell Rose 8 months ago from England

      Thanks Vellur, yes it was so much fun!

    • phoenix2327 profile image

      Zulma Burgos-Dudgeon 8 months ago from United Kingdom

      What a wonderful theatre you had. My memories of am-dram are of changing in the ladies' room, doing your own hair and make-up and sneaking a copy of the script backstage on the night so you could go over your lines one last time. Ah, good times.

    • Faith Reaper profile image

      Faith Reaper 8 months ago from southern USA

      Oh, Nell, what fun! And you're a natural. Thank you for sharing the great pics too. Your expression in that one photo is priceless.

      Hmm, you've given us a lot of food for thought. It won't be long before we'll be saying "we knew you when."

    • ChitrangadaSharan profile image

      Chitrangada Sharan 8 months ago from New Delhi, India

      It seems you had lot of fun. And I enjoyed going through your interesting experience. Lovely pictures and you look great.

      I remember how I enjoyed acting during my school days. It was so much fun.

      Thanks for an enjoyable read!

    • Vellur profile image

      Nithya Venkat 8 months ago from Dubai

      You must have felt great to take the final bow. So happy that you enjoyed the whole experience. Great pictures.

    • Nell Rose profile image
      Author

      Nell Rose 8 months ago from England

      Hi MsDora, I have a long way to go for that! LOL! some of the guys here have been acting in the Players for over 30 years! Phew! thanks as always.

    • Nell Rose profile image
      Author

      Nell Rose 8 months ago from England

      LOL! you do make me laugh Paula! and thanks so much! I haven't quite found my 'acting face' yet, so it will be a while before her Maj asks to see me perform! LOL!

    • MsDora profile image

      Dora Isaac Weithers 8 months ago from The Caribbean

      Congratulations, Nell! Proud of you and happy that you're doing something you really like. I may soon know someone in Hollywood!

    • fpherj48 profile image

      Paula 8 months ago from Beautiful Upstate New York

      BRAVO!!!! BRAVO!!!!! Nell, I'm so excited for you and proud of you as well! Autograph, please!! I can just imagine how much fun it is. I hope you continue to enjoy this for a long time, Nell. If they make videos and sell them ...please let me know!

      How long do you suppose before you perform for the Royals?? Luv ya, Paula

    • Nell Rose profile image
      Author

      Nell Rose 8 months ago from England

      Hi Genna, Aw thanks so much! its not a big deal really, just local, but so much fun! and thanks for reading.

    • Genna East profile image

      Genna East 8 months ago from Massachusetts, USA

      Hi Nell...

      It takes many people to pull off a stage production -- so much preparation, it's like a symphony that comes together like magic. I loved your tour of the process and the photos. I would be terrified to walk on that stage. Congratulations on your acting! This is a beautiful and noble art...and one that is lucky to have you. Have fun. :-)

    • Nell Rose profile image
      Author

      Nell Rose 8 months ago from England

      Aw thanks Audrey! not sure about a natural! LOL! the other guys are fabulous! You just go along with them!

    • Nell Rose profile image
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      Nell Rose 8 months ago from England

      It was called a Touch of Murder, spies, Mi5 and so on! lol! I was just the maid in the golf club....or was I? lol! thanks for asking Robert!

    • vocalcoach profile image

      Audrey Hunt 8 months ago from Nashville Tn.

      I'm so proud of you Nell! Just look at what you've achieved. Acting is rewarding and fun. I can tell by your photos that you're a natural. Congratulations!

    • Robert Sacchi profile image

      Robert Sacchi 8 months ago

      You're welcome. What was the play you were in about?

    • Nell Rose profile image
      Author

      Nell Rose 8 months ago from England

      Hi Robert, funnily enough I wrote one back in school many moons ago, but now have completely forgotten how to do it! lol! thanks for asking though, great question!

    • Robert Sacchi profile image

      Robert Sacchi 8 months ago

      Have you given any thought to writing a stage play?

    • Nell Rose profile image
      Author

      Nell Rose 8 months ago from England

      Thanks Alicia, yes it sure was fun, a bit scary too, but the other guys have been acting for years and years and they really are helpful, thanks so much for reading.

    • AliciaC profile image

      Linda Crampton 8 months ago from British Columbia, Canada

      It sounds like you had a lot of fun with the performance and the preparation, Nell. I hope you have an enjoyable future with the Marlow Players. Thanks for sharing your experiences in this interesting article.

    • Nell Rose profile image
      Author

      Nell Rose 8 months ago from England

      Hiya Blond, lol! I wish! not got that much confidence up yet, so hopefully I will soon learn, but....LOL! thanks for reading.

    • Blond Logic profile image

      Mary Wickison 8 months ago from Brazil

      I'm so pleased you enjoyed it. It sounds like the bug has bitten. Next stop, the West End.

      Good on you.

    • Nell Rose profile image
      Author

      Nell Rose 8 months ago from England

      LOL! I will say is only once! Haha! I did think when they said a maids costume I was going to get the short french maids one, not the granny one, but ah well beggars can't be choosers! LOL! thanks alan.

    • alancaster149 profile image

      Alan R Lancaster 8 months ago from Forest Gate, London E7, U K (ex-pat Yorkshire)

      "Is this a camera I see before me?" (Munch-munch, these choccies taste nice, any more...?)

      Why not a French maid's outfit, as in "'Allo, 'Allo"? (Who wants to be Mimi la Bonque? Zout alors!)

      Why don't you sell these Marlow Players the idea of doing a stage version (Rene's timing's got to be bang on, maybe a spell in 'Corrie' might be a start?) There's some good opportunities for Resistance girls - fancy it? (You'd look good in a black beret and trench coat with Tommy gun).

    • Nell Rose profile image
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      Nell Rose 8 months ago from England

      Hi Cheeluarv! LOL! oh those memories! I did it back in school too, but can't really remember it. i did go to ballet and dance classes and we did lots of stage work there, so its similar just learning lines instead of dancing!

    • Nell Rose profile image
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      Nell Rose 8 months ago from England

      Lol! thanks Ruby, doubt it, but you never know! but its just great to do something I always wanted to do, at the moment I have been in one, but help out with learning lines and such in two more, good practise!

    • Nell Rose profile image
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      Nell Rose 8 months ago from England

      Lol! yes those darn lines! its fun, but its one of those things that you have to love otherwise you just would not do it! thanks so much for reading.

    • cheeluarv profile image

      cheeluarv 8 months ago from INDIA

      Very enjoyable account of your first act. I Wish you, let your dreams come true and become a mainline actor. It reminded me of my act in the school play at the age of 13. It was a historical drama, I was the queen( b'cos of the look, not skill) wore the full wardrobe, had discussions with the king on some important matter? don't remember now. I do remember vividly are, my head was itching badly because of the wig, had the terrible fear of my dress might give up any moment, for the whole one hour of my sitting.Need not to say that was my first and last act.

    • always exploring profile image

      Ruby Jean Fuller 8 months ago from Southern Illinois

      I bet you're a natural with your wit. I think it's great, anything that brings joy is a good thing. I would be terrified! I remember when I was in nurses training I had to take a speech class, I literally felt sick when I had to speak in front of the class. So go with it Nell and maybe someday we'll see you in a movie, and I can say that I knew her when...

    • RoadMonkey profile image

      RoadMonkey 8 months ago

      That sounds like great fun. My father and one of his brothers enjoyed amateur dramatics after the war and one brother and one sister enjoy it too but I never felt the urge - didn't like learning lines!

    • Nell Rose profile image
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      Nell Rose 8 months ago from England

      Hi Robert, thank you so much! yes its great! not enjoyed myself like for ages, and of course cacking myself before going on stage of course! LOL!

    • Nell Rose profile image
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      Nell Rose 8 months ago from England

      Thanks Martie, sometimes you have to jump in the deep end big time! lol!

    • Robert Sacchi profile image

      Robert Sacchi 8 months ago

      Thank you for the inside view of stagework. I enjoyed the article and congratulations on your acting debut.

    • MartieCoetser profile image

      Martie Coetser 8 months ago from South Africa

      What a wonderful opportunity! I can just imagine how much you enjoy being an actor, Nell. Keep going! Your lines will multiply - mark my words :)

    • Nell Rose profile image
      Author

      Nell Rose 8 months ago from England

      Aw thanks so much Jackie, always great to see you. I will add some more photos when the photographer gets round to sorting them out along with the video, which I will also add on here too.

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      Jackie Lynnley 8 months ago from The Beautiful South

      This is just fantastic. Love the pictures of you, wish there were many more!

    • Nell Rose profile image
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      Nell Rose 8 months ago from England

      Thanks Nadine, yes it was so cool! lol! thanks so much for reading.

    • Nell Rose profile image
      Author

      Nell Rose 8 months ago from England

      Thanks John, I thought I would give it a go, if it starts getting scary then i am off! LOL! thanks for reading, nell

    • Nell Rose profile image
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      Nell Rose 8 months ago from England

      Thanks Ann, they are all so nice there that after a few awkward feeling nervous and embarrassed moments, you then realise that they are just trying to remember their words like you are, and boom off you go! lol! the play was A TOUCH OF DANGER by Frances Durbridge, thanks again! :)

    • Nadine May profile image

      Nadine May 8 months ago from Cape Town, Western Cape, South Africa

      That was a great hub to read and it was very clear that you loved every minute of it.

    • Jodah profile image

      John Hansen 8 months ago from Queensland Australia

      Well done, Nell. Looks like you have caught the acting bug. I remember doing stage plays at school and it was fun but being in front of a crowd is not my thing these days. Some people are just made for the stage however, and it seems you are one of them. Well done, and thanks for sharing.

    • annart profile image

      Ann Carr 8 months ago from SW England

      Well done, Nell! Congratulations. I help occasionally with props at my friend's local pantomime company and I've done a little acting as I studied Drama at college. However, it takes some nerve and you really have to have life experience to know what a role should be. You so obviously enjoyed it so I hope you continue and finally become the main attraction! You've conveyed all the fun that it entails.

      BTW what was the play?

      Ann

    • Nell Rose profile image
      Author

      Nell Rose 8 months ago from England

      Hi Sally, thanks for reading. yes its great fun! It took me years to summon up the courage! lol! but wouldn't give it up now!

    • sallybea profile image

      Sally Gulbrandsen 8 months ago from Norfolk

      That looks like a whole lot of fun. I can remember helping someone at a local theatre in South Africa learn their lines. I remembered all the words before I watched the play but I still loved it. You just reminded me how much fun it was.