As so often is the way with artistic endeavours, oddness soon gave way to the thrill of creativity, and to the sheer respect that our talented artists demanded. Helen’s a very demanding role: with acting, singing and physical theatre abilities being only the bare bones of what will be required to really tell her story on stage. Each one of the women in the audition that day gave their all, for the whole time they were there; and for that I am immensely grateful. As a writer I’m quite used to rejection. It’s par for the course. But as a writer, when you’re pitching for this, that or the other, you’re unlikely to be standing next to your competitors – and less likely still to be performing complex physical sequences with them!
Yet, although the atmosphere was fiercely physical and competitive, there was also a wonderful sense of camaraderie, and of people genuinely enjoying themselves. It’s tough when at any moment you can get the tap on the shoulder that tells you you’re out; but it’s testament to Benji’s professionalism and natural character that the room remained positive throughout. In the end we did find our Helen, and I very much look forward to introducing her to you soon.
HOAX as a project can’t help but make me reflect: on life, on how fragile it can be, on what we do with ours, and how easily it can be taken away. And being in that room with the HOAX team around me, I was reminded of the simple pleasure it is to share bold endeavour with good people.