Shortly after gaining entry to performing arts high school, (Yes, it was just like Fame. We sang in all our classes, eating disorders were rife, some of the boys were gay and my friend had an abortion. I may have forgotten the plot to fame.) I fell madly in love with my Drama teacher.
For the sake of anonymity let’s call him H.
H was possibly the hairiest man I’ve ever encountered, rivalled only by Robin Williams, although technically I’ve yet to encounter Robin Williams. H even had hair on the bridge of his nose.
I decided this hirsuteness was the summit of virility.
H was passionate about theatre and politics and how the first could alter the second and he had been trying to get a production of Stephen Sewell’s The Blind Giant is Dancing off the ground at our school for some time. I immediately claimed it as my FAVOURITE EVER PLAY and was determined to get the lead role.
I did not.
I didn’t even get a minor role.
I did however get the opportunity to rehearse for the audition, with H reading the role of my lover during which he grabbed my backside several times to my sheer delight.
As is often an issue for teenage actresses I wasn’t really thin enough or sexy enough to play a role that made Cate Blanchette’s name in Australian theatre. I couldn’t even land the goth role on Neighbours despite actually being a goth.
I continued to moon over H for the remainder of high school. When I was raped (it’s a much longer, sadder story, best left) shortly before graduation he was one of the only adults I told. He took me for a coffee one Saturday afternoon and I hoped against hope that he would ask me to elope with him.
He did not.
Sometime later in one of his more honest moments he told me that he thought it was unlikely I would get work as a professional actress until I reached my 40’s.
I hope in time to prove him wrong by never becoming a professional actress.