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It’s Good To Be The King

November 24th, 2004

Last weekend I tried out for the Parkland College Theatre production of The Phantom Tollbooth, based on the classic children’s book by Norton Juster. I haven’t been in a play in years, but I’d been missing it. This production seemed like a good bet because I’m very fond of the book/movie and because it seemed like the sort of thing that wouldn’t attract many of the local thespians. (Which are legion around here, I can tell you.)

I decided that it would be really cool to be the Mathemagician, the King of Digitopolis. See, The Phantom Tollbooth is an allegory about the joys of learning, and tells the story of a young boy named Milo who brings together two kingdoms which are warring over whether letters or numbers are more important. (You can guess which the Mathemagician favors.)

After an audition during which I proved that I could be a complete fool on stage, I was invited back last night for callbacks. Instead of reading dialogue, I was asked to count in a “kingly” voice. I hammed it up for all it was worth, and apparently, it paid off, for today…

…I AM the King!

Rehearsals start soon, and the first performance is on January 19 at the Parkland College Theatre in Champaign.

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