Saturday, 7 March 2015

The After Show Rollercoaster!

I was thinking recently how to best describe my feelings and emotions when a show finishes and I head off to meet Faye at the stage door.

It might sound a little odd but the only comparison I could come up with is the adrenaline rush you experience when you ride a rollercoaster.

Prelude 1: You've been to this theme park before, had a fantastic time on lots of rides and always wanted to go on the giant rollercoaster. But you're never quite brave enough and leave the park with a tinge of regret.

I'd fallen in love Faye's amazing portrayal of Elle Woods in Legally Blonde and travelled all over the UK watching the show. However, despite really wanting to meet the lady herself, I couldn't pluck up the courage to go to the stage door.

Prelude 2: You decide today is the day. It's time to man up! You're going back to your favourite theme park and this time you're determined to face your fears and ride the rolloercoaster.

After seeing Faye in Legally Blonde about 10 times, I finally decided I have to meet this incredible actress and tell her just how much I love her performance and that she's the best Elle Woods I've ever seen.

Thankfully those preludes no longer apply because at the 11th time of asking I finally found the courage to meet Faye at the New Theatre Oxford in July 2012.

I think you can tell a lot from a girls eyes and smile so I wasn't at all surprised to discover Faye was a truly beautiful person both inside and out.

However, I guess this is where the story really begins because I still go through the following stages / emotions every time I've arranged to meet up with Faye after a show.

Stage 1: You've arrived at the theme park and you can't wait to get to the rollercoaster because you're bursting with excitement at what's to come. However there is a niggling concern that your favourite ride will be closed for repairs.

This is the part when I race to the stage door because I'm worried Faye will have somehow managed to wash off all her ogre make-up, get changed, grab her things and leave the theatre before I've had time to exit the building. Irrational but true!

Stage 2: You finally get to the rollercoaster and join the back of the queue. Your pleased to see it's open for business but you start to feel a little anxious, knowing that you'll soon be flying round the track at break neck speed.

This is the part when the nerves really start to kick in. I'm stood by the stage door, jumping every time it opens, desperately trying to remember everything I want to say to Faye.

Stage 3: You near the front of the queue and have a clear view of the giant steel structure with it's little cars full of screaming people. Butterflies have taken over your stomach as you watch them loop the loop and go down a vertical drop.

This is the part when I've been waiting for nearly 30 minutes and most cast members have already left. I'm starting to panic that I must have somehow missed Faye. Did I look away at the wrong time? Did she leave by another exit? Should I send her a message to remind her I'm here?

Stage 4: You're now on the ride and you can't remember ever being so scared as you climb and climb and climb until the people below look like tiny ants. Then you're flying round the track. You can no longer concentrate on anything as the thrill of the ride has completely taken over.

This is the part where Faye comes out the stage door and my heart rate goes through the roof. Then she gives me a hug and the ride begins. Any chance of coherent thought is gone and I just have to enjoy the moment. However long we talk for it seems to go in a flash and afterwards my head is spinning as I struggle, and often fail to remember everything we've discussed.

Stage 5: You exit the rollercoaster on shaky legs and there is a kiosk selling pictures from the ride. I can't decide whether to buy one or not. I look a little silly but it's a great momento and proof I overcame my fears and rode the rollercoaster.

This is the part where I have to decide whether to ask Faye for a picture. I always want one because pictures with my idol are priceless to me and it's impossible for my mind to recall just how beautiful Faye is without proof. However, although Faye always looks stunning the same cannot be said for me, so I'm a little unsure. Thankfully my desire for the photo usually outweighs insecurities and I go home with another treasured momento.

Stage 6: You walk away from the ride on an all time high. You wonder what you were so scared of. If you had time you'd love to queue up and do it all again!

This is the part where me and Faye have said our goodbyes and I'm heading back to the car. I begin to wonder why I always get so nervous because Faye is actually one of the nicest people you could ever wish to meet. As I drive off I'm already looking forward to the next time I'll have the opportunity to speak to this amazing lady.

So there you go. The Faye Brookes rollercoaster. If you're ever lucky enough to see Faye in a show why not take a ride. She's always happy to chat with fans at the stage door.

Can anyone else relate to my after show experience or is it just me?

Probably just me :-)

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