Fame and Fortune

I want to have a career in the performing industry. I love the process of auditioning, rehearsing, and then showing people the final product. I love to bring stories and characters to life, see people’s faces as they see their favourite characters become “real”. It’s a very rewarding experience.
Most people, however, seem to think that I’m doing it to become rich and famous. When I tell them what I’m planning on doing, eg what I’m auditioning for, who I’ve talked to about projects, etc,  the most common things they say to me is “Don’t forget me when you’re famous!”.

I didn’t mind it the first few times it happened, but now it happens nearly every time I talk to people about my career plans. And honestly, it sucks. And then people saying “Get me free tickets to see your show/movie when you’re famous”? Umm, I’m only going to do that to family. And maybe very close friends.
The other thing that annoys me is when people say “When you’re famous I can tell my friends that I knew you/performed with you/heard you sing [etc] before you reached fame”. Um, okay, cool.

If I become famous, then fine, you have every right to say that you met me. Telling me not to forget you when I’m famous? What, you think the minute I’m surrounded by my famous friends that I’m going to forget you? If I’ve forgotten you it’s because my memory sucks with anything that isn’t fandom or song related, or because we cut ties. And asking me for tickets to things… well, I’m not going to give out freebies to everyone who asks. I might do it every now and then, but seriously, just because someone is famous doesn’t mean that they have lots of money to throw around.

It really hurts my feelings when I open up to people about my passions and they start going on about what I should do for them when I become famous.

Another thing I’ve noticed that people don’t really want to know you when you’re famous. Have you ever noticed that? Fans always want to have a photo with their favourite celebrity and say “I met so-and-so!!!!1!!!!111!!!!!!” They all want to say that they saw you or had a selfie or a hug or something. None of them want to just say hello and have an actual conversation with you. Once someone becomes famous  it’s like they become an object rather than a person.

And why the change? People become uncomfortable when the moment they meet someone that other person starts freaking out that “they’re famous and I’m standing next to them!” They would definitely rather it if you just treated them like a normal person – ignoring them and going about your business or engaging them in an actual conversation*.

*Actual conversation doesn’t mean anything along the lines of “OMG I saw that you and so-and-so broke up! That’s so sad, I cried so badly, you two are my OTP”. It means something along the lines of “it’s a nice day, isn’t it? Did you watch last nights soccer game of England vs France? It was a great match, wasn’t it?”. Just a conversation that you’d have with normal people.

So the next time you’re talking to someone who wants to have a career doing performing of some sort, don’t throw in any “when you’re famous” comments. And if you ever meet a famous person, have an actual conversation. They will feel like a person rather than an object.

Eärlindë Melwasúl



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