PHOTO: An audience member captures my very first curtain call as Guy, exactly one year a go today.

*****


A year a go today and after just two weeks of rehearsals, a very clammy David Hunter stepped nervously onstage to play Guy for the very first time. This meant the realisation of a long standing dream of mine and the beginning of a journey which would see me fulfil an even bigger one; playing this magnificent role Full Time.

I’d spent the previous few days trying to come to terms with the realities of being a Standby. This was a whole new experience for me and a decision I was still trying to rationalise. Rather than performing every night, I’d be sat backstage waiting for opportunities. I knew these opportunities would come but when and how often, I had no idea. August the 12th 2013 was supposed to be about adjusting to this new routine, about finding my feet backstage. What actually happened was totally unexpected, completely wonderful and very, very sweaty.

The call came through around lunchtime. I thought it was a joke. There can’t be many occasions where a Standby has been thrust into action on his very first day. The fact of the matter was, I hadn’t even met some of the cast by this point and a few hours later I would be expected to lead them out in front of a thousand people.

I spent the day calmly [frantically] looking over my lines, whilst focussing [crying] and preparing for the task ahead [wondering if I could run away]

And then, before I knew it, we’d begun.

I remember the sweat.

Not a lot else, just the sweat.

I didn’t realise you could sweat from your fingertips.

Or the back of your knees.

But there I was.

Sweating.

And generally doing everything I was meant to be doing.

(I think)

My girlfriend assures me it was wonderful, but I have very little recollection of what actually happened that night. Nothing went wrong, I know that much. I said all my words, mostly in the right order, and no one died. Which makes for an extremely successful debut if you ask me.

And a year later, after numerous performances as a Standby and many, many more since I took on my dream role Full Time, I still look back on that night, and the week of performances that followed, with real pride.

At the time it was petrifying, but in hindsight, I wouldn’t change a thing. Yes it was a shock, horrifying in fact, but more than anything it was thrilling and exciting and without a doubt very, VERY sweaty.