Friday, February 17, 2017

Natasha, Pierre, and Nick

I had the opportunity to see "Natasha, Pierre, and the Great Comet of 1812" this week, and was excited to see Nick Choksi, one of the funniest actors I ever worked with on One Life to Live, in a featured role. Now, I realize that for most people, seeing Josh Groban in the show would be the attraction. Yet, while I don't mean to take any credit from him or the rest of the cast, I couldn't help focusing on the performance of someone with whom I'd worked, and wondering about the varied roles an actor plays over the course of a career.

For many a New York actor, One Life (or one of the other soaps that was once here) was just a brief stopping point--one gig among many--so that when the soaps went away, there were simply fewer places to work. For others, the soaps became a much longer-lasting endeavor, perhaps punctuated by other gigs, but fairly central to existence. Either way, the genre played a key role for many a New York actor. And when it went away, actors, like the rest of us, simply had to focus on other areas. Like the rest of us, they landed all over, demonstrating that where we were together was simply a stop along the way. As satisfying as it always was for me while I was working in soaps to see "one of our own" turn up on Broadway or on a prime time show, it is perhaps even more satisfying now, because it reminds me that life goes on in all sorts of big ways.

In the case of Nick, this is perhaps nothing so new. But when I see him, or any other actor with whom I was privileged to share the soap studio, I can't help but clap a little louder. I am reminded that, for us all, there is way more than one life to live...

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