I was being interviewed last week about my theatrical career on PEI, and one of the questions was about my goals for the future. I think I kind of stumbled through some sort of “I’m lazy” answer about how I don’t really set goals for myself, because then you actually have to strive to achieve them. I couldn’t really think of anything interesting to say except for that and some vague notion that maybe someday I’d perform a one-man show featuring some of the characters and songs I’ve created over the years. Even as I was saying that, though, and again as I type this, I found/find that notion to be awfully yawn-inducing.
What I should have said though, was that I had always joked that someday when I’m an older gentleman, I’d “retire” into the role of Matthew in Anne Of Green Gables and live out my golden years in Avonlea. Of course, I don’t really plan to do that (I’d be more Cecil the Farmer material perhaps), but today I was thinking about the concept when it struck me:
For many actors on PEI, getting a role in the Confederation Centre’s Anne of Green Gables would be the “real world” equivalent of “gettin’ a government job”. Pay is pretty good (I imagine), it’s seasonal (don’t think you can qualify for EI after, though??), and (again, I imagine) once you get into the routine of the job, there wouldn’t really be a lot of reward to performing it.
Plus, once you land the gig and perform it at least at a satisfactory level, it’s potentially yours for as long as the government in power (the artistic director) stays in power. After they get ousted, you hope you make it past the inevitable new-government cuts and subsequent patronage appointments.