Passionate Geeks: The Art of Being Someone Else

Background Artwork by Rose B. Fischer
Background Artwork by Rose B. Fischer.

Passionate Geeks is a monthly feature (the second Wednesday of the month), where I invite people to explore and share about those things that they are passionate about.
What kind of a Geek are you? (If you’d like to answer this question on this blog just let me know!)

DeannaDee author picThis months Passionate Geek is  Deanna Dee.  Deanna is strictly human and does not, to her knowledge, own a hyena. She lives by the sea, which she takes full advantage of in the summer time. People, reading, and pop culture make up the shameless downtime of her life. The rest of it is writing, and she’s okay with that.
You can find Deanna on her website, Facebook,Twitter, Goodreads, or Amazon!

One day when I was in sixth grade, the morning announcements casually mentioned auditions for “this year’s musical.” I’d never been in a real show and so listened intently as all the information was given and ended with “the musical is for grades seven and eight.”

Seven and eight? Some quick math told me six was less than seven (dang!), and so I put my excitement at being in a play away. Band and choir kept me going through sixth grade, and around the same time the following school year, the announcement was made again. Some more easy math confirmed seven was equal to seven, and I put auditions on my calendar.

The audition went well. I was cast as an ear of corn (and general ensemble member) in Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat, and a love for performance was born in me.

That summer, I went to theatre camp, where we put on a musical in a month. The following school year, I did the musical again. The next summer saw more theatre camp. I was doing two shows a year. It was awesome! The fall after theatre camp #2, I started high school and auditioned for my first non-musical play.

And didn’t get in.

A bit devastated, I threw myself into doing other stuff. One weekend afternoon, my dad wandered into my room and asked what I was doing. I told him I was working on world building for a book, and he asked if I was up for an adventure. I’d never turned down an adventure since I could remember, so the world building went away, and the Dungeons and Dragons books came out.

The next several hours were full of caverns, monsters, and puzzles. I played the female main character and responded to my dad’s dialogue, which he spoke in the tones of both friend and foe. Late in the game, I gave a heroic call to arms, and my fellows responded. A rush hit me, and I realized it was similar to the self-diagnosed “actor’s high” I got after shows.

My freshman year of high school progressed. I didn’t get into any shows that year, but I continued having adventures on weekends and getting my acting fix. Role playing games were a lot like a play in all the best ways. I could be whoever I wanted. I could slip into someone else’s life for a while, and in high school, that was a big deal. The summer after my freshman year, I went back to theatre camp. I don’t know if my hours of adventuring paid off or not, but I got my first small part in a play—Grandmother Tzeitel in Fiddler on the Roof.

In the following years, I did more shows and loved them. In college, my friends and I ran a D and D campaign, for which I got to be a dark and brooding assassin, Kendell. I’ll never forget her. She rocked, and she kept me feeling the acting love between shows. Long story short, subconsciously, Dungeons and Dragons seemed to have sparked my enjoyment of acting, and acting bolstered my love of D and D. My special brand of geek is putting on someone else’s face. It’s a lot of fun and nowhere near as bloody as it sounds.


2 thoughts on “Passionate Geeks: The Art of Being Someone Else

  1. Thanks for explaining the whole Dungeons & Dragons thing to me. I knew a few people who were really into it and dismissed it as being daggy back in the day but it actually sounds like a lot of fun. I had a solo role in a year musical at school but I could sing but not dance and so missed out on roles. My daughter has done quite a few big performances with her school choir and we both have a love of musical theatre. She auditioned or the Sydney production of the Sound of Music but didn’t get a call back and we went to see “Matilda the Musical” and both loved it.
    xx Rowena


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