When I act in plays I don't get sleep; when I don't get sleep I get depressed; when I get depressed I get bitchy; when I get bitchy I take it out on my wife and kids. So every time I do a play, I take my life into my own hands.
So why do I do plays? Back when I was doing it for money, the answer was obvious: money. Of course, the enjoyment factor was far less than now, because now I'm acting, and when I was getting paid it tended to be backstage work. But really, are there any tangible benefits? Why do I do community theater?
I suppose one reason is that I'm pretty good at it. It's a lot of fun to be a big fish in a small pond. I'm not nearly good enough to make it as a paid actor (and most non-Equity theaters I could work at don't do plays I'm interested in anyway). But I can shine in the community theater scene.
Two is the people. This group I'm working with now seems to be a bunch of folks who know what they're doing and take it just seriously enough. In other words, they recognize that there is a whole world out there to which theatre is utterly irrelevant, and maybe that's the way it should be.
Three is the pressure, or lack thereof. One reason I couldn't hack it as a professional actor is that I utterly hate doing the cattle-call auditions where you have to prepare a two-minute monologue, etc.; but that's a major part of getting your foot in the paid door. But most community theaters do cold readings from the script, which I've always been pretty good at.
But is it worth it, for two or three weekends of glory that few people will see anyway? I don't know. I'll tell you in three weekends.
But there is one, awful awful aspect of every show I do, which continually threatens to ruin my life, or at the very least send me into a deep pool of high-school-esque angst. What is it? Well, unfortunately I can't talk about it, because this is a family blog (that is, a blog read by my family), and too much pain would result. So you'll just have to use your imagination.