It's crazy how much I think about weight and body image these days. I think it's because of the external pressure of how an actor should look like that makes me very conscious of what I eat and how it will make me look. I can't deny the fact that diet, a conscious choice of healthy eating, has been a big part of my life for the past month or so. It's so hard to keep up with it sometimes, but I'm slowly learning self-discipline and cutting back on eating processed and junk foods--which brings me to FAT PIG by Neil Labute. I first heard of this play through a male classmate who did a monologue out of it. Within the monologue, he talked about how shameful he felt about his mother's weight issue, and I immediately got sucked into the story. I decided to buy the book, read it, and picked out this part of the play to play with. As an obese child, I knew I can find something in this play I can relate to.
It was hardest monologue for me. For various reasons, I found myself in the "actor" mode. Like ... how will this girl feel when she is confessing to the boy she likes a lot that she will do anything to herself to change for him? That was a truckload to digest. I tried too hard to think about the words, and at some point in class, I totally forgot my lines and didn't even know how to deliver it. I tried recording the monologue at home right after I left class, but I had so much trouble. What was Helen feeling at the moment? I kept thinking about how Helen might've thought. I knew I was trapping myself into creating a certain emotional character for her, so I decided to take a week's break from the material. I woke up on Wednesday morning (4/3) and decided it was time to record this video... and this is the 3rd take. I did 4 takes, but decided this one was more natural and conversational compared to the other takes. What do you think?
As much as I care about body image, I don't think I'll change myself for anyone in this world. I think Helen has a lot to work on, if she wants to be with Tom. But the story never got up to that point... oh wait, why am I spoiling the play. Go borrow or buy the play to find out what happens between Tom, the good-looking boy, and Helen, the so-called "fat pig." It's a really interesting read and what our society thinks is beautiful these days. Definitely spoke out to me, and I hope it will for you too.