When I was a child I was cast as Alice in Alice in Wonderland for the South African Broadcasting Corporation. It may have been my earliest professional acting job and I remember being terrified on the first day in the studio. An assistant walked me along the never-ending corridors, and I followed the whole time secretly wanting to cry with nerves. But when I reached the dressing room door I was absolutely delighted and excited to see my name on it, and I started to feel better about everything. If I allow my memory to take me back in time, I can smell the staleness of the wig which I had to wear and feel the stiffness of the dress and petticoats. I was dressed up and made to look just like the famous drawings. I have a mixture of feelings about that experience but I do remember being quite pleased when some money came my way a few weeks later and I was able to go and buy clothes with my very own hard-earned cash. I bought a big baggy red paisley patterned shirt, a neon pink one, and a pair of black brogues. I’m not sure if I also paid for the tightly fitting long black skirt, the sort that flared at the bottom, and the fishnet tights which I wore with the shirts, but nevertheless, I was really very pleased with the look. I’m pretty sure I also had a ridiculous fringe, which I spent hours straightening and shaped to sweep down in a diagonal, covering half my face. I was more than impressed with the final look! (I swear my mother wore those shirts for about two decades after I handed them over to her. Actually, after reading this she tells me three decades…)
I very much hope that Grace, the young actor in this headshot, receives lots of invitations to audition from casting directors as I know she works incredibly hard and has so many skills; I’m in awe! She can dance, play instruments, sing, act and finds time to do well at school too. I was never that able. Best wishes to Grace and I’m looking forward to seeing her name in lights one day.
Images (c)SJField 2017