I have always been fascinated with the correlation of mental illness and creativity. Some of the most brilliant artists have turned out some of their best work in a manic episode or a deep depression. These artists are so lost in themselves that the only way to escape is to create an alternative universe. They create a world through music, painting, words, and dance that takes them out of themselves, and in many cases results in brilliant work. I have not been as fortunate as to create a brilliant opera, or museum worthy painting when I am in the throws of depression. I however, have worn out my VHS copy of "Beaches" and can OWN a pint of "Oatmeal Cookie Chunk" Ice Cream.
Just today I was discussing with a friend how I think some of the best performers are those with a little "grit" in their story. They've been through some shit, in some cases they may even have 14 personalities, but they can usually tell a good story. I then got to thinking that maybe if they ran the auditions a little differently we'd be able to snatch up these "broken gems" and weed out the boring ones.
Actor : Good afternoon! I will be performing 16 bars from....
Random Casting Director: Hold On! Before you start, do you have any daddy issues?
Actor : Umm...No I had a great family life.
RCD: Thank you thats all I need to see today.
Actor : Hello! Would you like to hear the classical piece or the..
RCD : One minute! Have you ever resorted to prostitution in order to survive?
Actor : Actually I am a virgin and..
RCD : NEXT!
Actor :...well only because I have severe issues with opening up to people and don't really love myself and therefor do not think I will ever be capable of loving another, or ever allowing someone to love me.
RCD : Perfect. I will see you at the callback.
Of course there will be exceptions to the rules. Those people who have held on to their marbles, have a happy relationship, come from the perfect family with the perfect house and the perfect dog, and can still deliver like the craziest. However you think they do good work now? Wait until her husband leaves her for the man that was actually once married to her mother and she is now addicted to pills, malt liquor, and daytime soap operas. In between her wine coolers and her tears she'll begin to create. You thought she was delivering before, now she's giving you ART. As my grandmother always said "A sane mind can never sell The Man That Got Away". Actually my grandmother never said that, but I think it's true, and I think she should fully take credit for it and share it with the ladies at church.