Megan's Head

A place where Megan gets off her head.

Month: December 2014

My best theatre of 2014

One of my most favourite pieces of theatre this year was Drive With Me, written and performed by me and directed by Liz Mills. I not only loved doing it, I loved doing it at The Alexander Bar, loved the extraordinary responses I had to it, critically, but especially personally, and I totally loved being on stage in front of tiny full houses, receiving the love and warmth of shared work. I particularly loved being able to share my writing of this piece.

One of the most dangerous and exciting theatrical things I did this year was I Could Go On, three nights of me performing solo improv. Did everything work? No. Did some things exceed expectations? Totally. But I loved it. (I was held by director and gorgeous friend Candice D’Arcy).

One of my proudest moments of the year was the reading of my play Clouds Like Waves by friends and brilliant talents Jaci de Villiers, Tandi Buchan, Nicole Franco, Heather Mac and Charlie Keegan. They made me see how much I love this play. They were awesome and awe inspiring.

One of my absolute delights this year was directing Lynita Crofford in Violet Online. What a sexy little experiment that totally paid off in deliciousness. (opening at the Kalk Bay Theatre on 26 Jan for a 2 week run).

My big and enduring theatrical love affair was my industrial theatre road show for Engen. Honestly, after 10 years they just get better and better, and I love my cast, client and audiences deeply.

One of the last favourites of the year was the total joy of directing Nicholas Spagnoletti’s Drowned Bride. I was as off the wall as I could be, and I was allowed to be. What a gift, I tell ya.

My most outrageous theatrical project was coaching and directing a group of bankers to re-interpret four fairy tales and then perform them competitively. They were inspiring, hilarious and the best teams ever. They taught me so much.

There was more. All of it, in fact. But these were my favourite favourites. Thanks to all who help me do exactly what I love.



Saying Yes doesn’t mean never saying no

I have been a staunch advocate of living by the improv philosophy of saying YES. It has changed my way in the world, defined my workplace, strengthened my relationships and created a space for the enormous and powerful energy of creative exchange to take place. It has helped me listen, encourage, build bridges, go with the flow, see others, be in the present and, most importantly, counter the instant negativity of a default no. It has also been hard work for someone as totally opinionated and judgmental as I am. Saying yes against every fibre of instinct to say no when people seem stupid, lazy, defensive and opportunistic and arrogant (civil servants and bank people are a good example) is a challenge; I cannot lie. Saying yes is an attitude of ‘can do’. It is solution driven. It makes whoever you are saying yes to part of the team. And it is full of positive power.

Now here is an interesting notion. I have been reflecting on 2014 and why it has been such a wonderful, successful (in my own terms), and satisfying year for me, and the answer is that I learned to say NO. Isn’t that ironic? Here are some of the things I said no to. I said no to work with a boss that I had been saying yes to for too long, which made me frustrated, angry and miserable. I said no to taking on stuff because there was nobody else to do it, and this meant letting go of a particular kind of resentment that resulted in feelings of liberation. I have said no to people who tried to get me to change my vision about a certain thing when I felt like I would be compromised. I said no when every last desire-to-please feeling, and desire-not-to-hurt impulse made me want to say yes in a particular situation, and even though there was drama, it was worked through and we arrived at some wonderful clarity. And I also learned to say no to myself, learning the willpower of healthy eating, amongst other bad habits.

Don’t get me wrong, I am still your default-to-YES girl. I have just discovered the personal boundary of NO. And I am loving the balance.

This weird and in between time

It’s always like this, that Boxing day to New Year’s Eve weird holiday, year almost over, funny lose-the-days-of-the-week time. There is no traffic on the highway up the road. That sound usually accompanies my morning coffee. People in our street sleep later. The Boxing day test starts today. I start allowing unfocused thoughts about the new year to creep into my brain, but I don’t look at them, or encourage them. Not yet. I am still busy thinking about the year that was. I am thinking about what I did and didn’t do, but also noticing how more solid in my ways I have become. Only natural – I’ll be turning 50 in March. I still don’t feel entirely grown up, but I am definitely old when I notice how badly people drive, or how hideous most pop music is, or what the kids are wearing. Like my mother and father were.

I am one of the lucky ones. I love what I do for the duration of the year so there isn’t that special end of year relief and sadness when it is over. I only hope that next year is filled with the same business, energy, creativity, theatre, fun, writing, co-creating, improv, and connecting. And less bullshit, Cape Town, please.

Peanut butter and why the internet is amazing

In a case of Christmas morning bounty from nature I found a pine cone on our morning dog walk and it was full of pine nuts. I am talking the most full pine cone ever.

20141225_115050 I set about taking the nuts out and within seconds my hands were coated with very impossibly gooey pine sap. Sticky, brown, sticks to everything sap. So I asked Big Friendly to google for the best way to remove pine sap from skin and within nano seconds he had found a few options on the magical internet. I decided to try the first one, because it was one ingredient, I had some in the cupboard, and it promised to take 30 seconds.

Peanut butter.

20141225_115037Big friendly gave me a tablespoon of peanut butter (Black Cat crunchy if you must know) and I rubbed it into my hands for about 30 seconds. It felt fantastic, and smelled amazing. And then I washed it off. That is it. Peanut butter took off every last sticky blob of pine sap.


20141225_115229Which is why I love the internet, and nature, and peanut butter. Best internet solution ever.

The Anthologists

red-sea-fishA gift was passed my way. Nicholas Spagnoletti gave me his brand new short play to direct as part of The Anthologists, a tiny run of three plays taking place at The Alexander Bar from Monday the 8th of December. The other two are plays written and directed by Candice D’Arcy and Louis Viljoen, so expect different, unusual, crazy. Amy Wilson and Adrian Collins are in all three (how is that for a challenge?) and Brendon Daniels appears in Fundamental, Candice’s play.

I have had such fun with this. Drowned Bride is about 15 minutes long, and it is pretty funny. No, it is very funny. Nicholas really knows how to write gorgeous dialogue that actors can just play with. And, from the title you can pretty much tell that it’s not your common or garden wedding setting.

What has also been delicious for me is working with two actors who I haven’t worked with before. Amy Wilson and Adrian Collins are really fabulous, and so, so funny. Also, Nicola Hetz Date has offered me her design services, which is an added bonus. This talented theatre person is making us bits of set and sourcing bits of costume in that special, it won’t cost much, theatre way. I meet with her today to get an idea of what she has been doing and I can’t wait.

So, come and see the plays. Next week. Book here.


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