Throwback Thursday: Puppet edition #tbt

RB as Pinocchio. (Yes, that is a donkey tail.)

Every ballet dancer dreams of being cast as the lead role in a ballet. I was no different, silently and not-so-patiently waiting for my big part. Sure I’d done lead roles in The Nutcracker and other various rep works, but I wanted to be the title character.

As I mentioned in a previous #tbt post, my dream role was “Cinderella”, which I did not get. So when I did finally get the lead, what was it? “Princess Aurora” in The Sleeping Beauty? No. “Swanilda” in Copp?lia? Nope. “Snow White” in (duh) Snow White? Nuh uh.

For my big part, I got to be a boy. Scratch that…a wooden boy. I was cast to be the lead in my director’s new version of Pinocchio complete with fake rubber (phallic) nose. No pretty, pretty princess or grand pas for me, instead I got to have puppet arms, do flips, turn into a donkey and pretend to get drunk with the “Lost Boys” on stage. Maybe not a dream come true, but for as much as I bitched about that darn nose – I still can’t stand the smell of spirit gum – I had a role created on/for me. And once I realized I didn’t have to be ballerina perfect, that I could trip, fall, mess up…whatever and still be in character AND crack up the audience, well, I have to admit, I had a freakin’ blast!

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