When I was offered the role of Lucy in Jekyll and Hyde, the director spoke briefly with me on the phone.
“I really liked your choices and there is just a natural sultriness about you,” she said.
I’m pretty sure I blushed. I couldn’t see it but I could feel the heat rise in my face. I thanked her, accepted the role and then teetered between giggling and crying a bit. The whole thing made me nervous.
If you’re new coming in, the story goes that Jekyll is engaged to a lovely lady named Emma. When he is transformed into Hyde, he sees a whore named Lucy. I was recently cast as Lucy in our local community theater’s production of Jekyll and Hyde. (My friend Matt was cast as Jekyll and his wife Bethany is a prostitute with me. That may seem a weird dynamic to some but having Bethany with me while I whore around with her husband is so reassuring!)
Man and I do most of our talking after the kids are in bed and we are readying ourselves for the same.
“She said I am ‘naturally sultry…'” I told him as I crawled to him across the bed.
Man chuckled. Then he snorted a little.
“Thanks a lot,” I said dryly but it wasn’t long before we were both doubled over in laughter.
Bethany and I talked once about how we see ourselves as performers. I see myself as more comedic than as the sex-kitten. Think: Amy Pohler or Bette Midler. (Hm…Bette Midler… She can be both funny and sexy! Maybe that’s why I’m most comfortable with the Bring On The Men Number. I can be sexy and funny.)
Anywhoo…before rehearsals got started I tried my hand at seduction.
Man was sitting at the desk in our office. I turned his chair away from the desk and put my knee next to his hip.
“Hey you…” he said.
I smiled and slid my other leg up and nestled that knee onto the other side of him.
“Hey back…” I purred.
He slid his hands to my hips as I bent down to kiss him but then….”Oh! Ow, ow, ow.”
I very ungracefully got out of the chair. “My knees! Oh that hurt!”
“Ha ha ha! Naturally sultry,” Man laughed and he turned his chair and attention back to the computer.
“Yeah,” I sighed while stretching out my knee. “I was certainly not ‘type casted.'”
I considered the sexy women in my life. Lauren, Becky, Fun Stacey, Drake’s trainer, Christine… to name a few. They don’t “act” sexy. They just are. Why? They don’t all have great figures or even similar figures, at that. They all have very different personalities too. The commonality is confidence.
Before the audition I had seen a coach, Danielle, another sexy broad. She told me that, before an audition I should recall compliments that people have given me that made me feel great about myself.
“Remember moments in your life when you felt good and confident and bring that ‘you’ into the audition.”
I recalled compliments given to me by people who don’t give them lightly. I recalled walking the streets of Paris in my favorite polka dot dress and how my friends and I laughed at all the heads that I turned. I recalled when I sang a song and nailed it and the applause from the audience and the kudos from friends after. I harnessed those moments of confidence and brought them with me while I performed.
I tried to get myself in top physical form for the beach weddings I had this summer. At one point I had to throw up my hands and say, “This is as good as it gets. Wear your suit with confidence and it will hide the flaws.”
I had noticed in Europe that the women there are not as insecure as American women. There, sexiness is not due to booty shorts and hard core abs. It’s all in their confidence and security of self. I can always pick out European women at the beach or pool because, despite less than perfect figures, they are the sexiest thing out there as they are carried in the strength of their self assuredness.
So for the last, 4 months or so, I’ve been feeling much less angst-y about my body image. It’s so much easier to just….be! Granted, I’ve had a few lessons that have opened my eyes to the fact that men are not that hard to interest. When I went to Paris and Cancun, Man asked me to leave my wedding ring behind. He has no faith/trust in foreign governments.
“They can take whatever they want from you in customs,” he claims.
I don’t know about that…but, I left my ring behind as asked.
I’ve noticed men notice me but never in my life have I ever been hit on by a man. It became evident to me that it’s due to either my husband’s presence or that of my wedding ring. I laughed to myself in shock and nervousness at the attention I was getting from men at the airport, the streets, discos… (Ugh. That’s another story.) And as soon as those guys found out I was married…POOF! Gone in a flash. Ha ha ha! I was highly amused, not just with their one track mindedness but with the fact that I was approached during times where I felt I was my least attractive. So either it’s because I wasn’t trying while other women around me were, OR it’s because men are really not that hard to please. They saw boobs so it didn’t matter that my dress was frumpy, my hair was gross and my face was sweaty. Yes, this is how I travel. Sue me.
Fast forward to rehearsals: I’m trying to hold onto the lessons I learned while traveling. I tried to bring my sexy to the stage. The problem is (I think) that I’m a royal prude.
At one music rehearsal I was singing Dangerous Game with Hyde (YouTube it. Goodness.) The whole cast sings these beautifully creepy ooohs and aaahs in the back ground. It’s amazing! For some reason I was completely unnerved. I sang my little heart out and was pleased with most of what I gave. When we finished the song, the music director asked me to be a little more breathless.
“Gasping if you can,” she suggested.
Fire in my face. I know I blushed to maroon. I was so embarrassed and then aggravated with myself for it. Dumb!
At another rehearsal, my fellow whores and I were dancing to Bring On The Men. Super fun! I rather love this number and I love rehearsals for it because there’s lots of laughter! This is more me. Flirty and funny. This I can do. The sexy dancing….is coming along. After the first night of rehearsing Bring On The Men, one of the girls gave us a little pep talk.
“Don’t worry, ladies. We’ll get sexier.”
We laughed so hard and it’s been our mantra ever since! And we are!
Before last night’s rehearsal I tried to get myself in the right state of mind. On a hike, I made eyes at every man I passed. They all responded by locking eyes and one even blushed.
Yeah…I’ve got this.
I talked to my friend Rachel. Part of my problem is worrying what other people will think.
“Remember…you are what you love, not what loves you. It truly doesn’t matter what anyone else thinks of you. What matters is that you love being on stage, you love being able to portray a character in a real and meaningful way. So release the fear that comes from wanting approval and dive head first into your passion.”
That goes for everyone! What great advice!
I had my mojo. I was not going to blush or be embarrassed at this rehearsal.
Before I left I asked Hubby, “When am I most sexy?”
“Hmm…when you’re cooking dinner….when you’re hair is in a pony tail and your in a t-shirt and jeans, sitting on the couch reading a book. Basically, when you aren’t trying to be.”
“Sorry. I know that doesn’t help.”
So I went to rehearsal feeling good about myself and my sexuality. I brought the sexy on the best I could while acting sexy but like I’m not acting sexy. I mean, I know there were some very unsexy moments to be sure but for the most part I felt good with what I gave. In the directors closing notes she said I did a good job.
“I still need you to be sexier though. Also, you’re a little too nice. You need to be more of a hustler.”
I glanced at Bethany who just smiled sweetly.
“Maybe think of some actresses performances that you can emulate. Think of some moments in their performances that you can use.”
Julia Roberts in Pretty Woman was my first thought. But was she sexy or charming? Kathleen Turner in Romancing The Stone. Oo…she’s hot.
What do you think? What is a sexy scene that stands out for you in a movie? I’m not talking Sharon Stone in Basic Instinct either. (Right? We’re not talking that, are we EK?)
When I got home Man was in bed.
“How’d it go?”
“Really well! It was super fun. I still need to be sexier though…”
“I think that’ll come along more once I can pull my face out of the script.”
“Maybe we should practice. I know I’m sexy to you.”
“Ha! Well, unless this show is a porn, you can’t use the same methods with Jekyll as you do with me,” he said as he pulled me on top of him.
“Well….” I laughed.
Don’t worry. I’ll get sexier.