Every thespian has a meltdown now and again — after all, it’s called drama, isn’t it? Here is a list of freakout moments that can get to even the coolest of cucumbers once in awhile:
1. Where’s My Prop?!?!
You’re about to make your entrance, and suddenly, you can’t find that all-important phone you need to answer during your scene or some other inanimate object that’s essential to you not looking like a total fool in the next 30 seconds. And no, making a fake phone with your fingers is not going to cut it.
There’s nothing quite like that moment when all your backstage hijinks can be heard by the audience and the fourth wall has definitely, definitely been broken.
3. But, I Have Rehearsal…
Whether you have to attend your cousin’s wedding, jury duty or your high school graduation, life happens — and so does rehearsal. You’d sooner miss your own prom than miss rehearsal, so how do you choose?
4. I Lost My Voice
You’re two days away from opening night and your voice suddenly sounds less like a soaring soprano and more like … well, nothing at all. Yep, it’s okay to freak out.
5. Who Took My Cold Cream?
Actors tend to have special attachments to their makeup boxes and the contents inside, so when they’re messed with, it sparks a fury no one ever thought a missing eye pencil could cause. No words can describe your feelings when you can’t find your cold cream after a show.
6. That’s My Song!
It’s a terrifying moment at any audition when someone sings the same 16 bars you’re about to sing. You know it’s bound to happen sometimes, but it’s still a total bummer when it happens to you.
7. How Many Lines?
Whether you have to memorize too many lines in a small amount of time or have too few lines than you thought you’d have, line counting always brings out the anxiety in any actor.
8. I Can’t Find My Other Tap Shoe!
A missing wardrobe piece is just as bad as a missing prop — or worse, depending on what it is. Tap dancing with one shoe is pretty bad, but missing your pants might be just a teensy bit worse.
9. The Cast List Freakout
The dreaded cast list posting is sure to cause a fuss one way or another. Whether your director is taking too long to post it or your name isn’t where you thought it would be on the list, you’re gonna need an antacid and a yoga class to get your nerves untangled after it goes up.
10. My Makeup Mirror Space, Your Makeup Mirror Space
Dressing room real estate is a big deal. As much as you love your castmates, you don’t love it so much when their wig head and flat iron end up in your prep area.
11. The Dropped Line
You’re onstage, it’s your cue and your mind is totally blank — except for the part that’s freaking out wondering whether it would be better to make a jump for it into the orchestra pit.
12. The Stepped-Upon Line
No actor likes it when his or her lines are stepped on. You may accept that this happens sometimes, but when it becomes a chronic problem, you tend to go just a little crazy.
13. The Near-Impossible Quick Change
It’s cool, you just have to change out of your costume completely and switch your hairstyle and makeup in 20 seconds. No need to freak out; it’s plenty of time. Oh, don’t forget you have to run through the lobby first to enter from the opposite side of the stage. Totally cool.
14. Quiet in the Wings!
You’re trying to quiet your mind and center yourself before your big, dramatic entrance, and a fellow thespian won’t stop whisper-talking your ear off. Hey, zip it!
15. How Many Pirouettes?
Your choreographer expects you to be the next Baryshnikov in your “Guys and Dolls” number; meanwhile, you’re still trying to master the plié.
Your laugh lines didn’t get any laughs, so you blame the acoustics and then go home to cry into your pillow.