When it comes to creative endeavors, there’s always a learning curve. In preparation for The Chocolate Affair, I was asked to look into myself, in deep contemplation. I needed to find sass. Of course, I was learning from the masters of the subject, Raidizon Mercedes and Diamond Pollard, my FOA directors, true gurus of all things sassy. We spent countless hours developing M&M my hard-shelled, but soft-centered, character in the play. I poured over videos, returning the classics, Asking All Dem Questions and Ratchet Girl Anthem, to name a few. I had the sugar, I just needed some spice. Acting opposite my cast mates, David Gumino and Amy Vonder Haar, we pushed each other to our limits. Our first day, we were tasked to act out various candies. The activity soon devolved into a stark reflection on humanity. What does it mean to be a Hershey kiss? Is there a little bit of kit or kat inside all of us? Diamond brought snacks. It was truly a life-changing experience.
As we enter tech week, I look back on the highs and lows of rehearsal. It takes the form of a montage, maybe underscored with Seal’s Kiss from a Rose. I see Diamond, throwing candy, generally missing. David being weird. Amy getting intimate with some chocolate. Raidizon being Raidizon. And then there’s me, having the time of my life.