Robin Laurén

Learning in Public

Efraim Longstocking

I can’t believe i haven’t written about my largest project in ages! Yes, i’ve taken the stage in an amateur children’s theatre production, Pippi Långstrump, which is Swedish for Pippi Longstocking. I’m playing Pippi’s dad Efraim and a small role as Starke Adolf who i don’t know the English name for. But it’s this strongman who performs at the market (originally, at the circus) and gets wrestled down by the strongest girl in the world.

It’s been insanely fun and very, very intensive, both emotionally and physically. I’m not much of a by-heart-learner, so learning my lines was a bit of a challenge, but way more so was learning coreography. I am not a dancer. I dance like a panda. And after half a year of theatre, i still don’t dance any better than a panda. Also, dancing, lifting and spinning Pippi around and singing at the same time really takes my breath, which is why i’ve started to take the bicycle half the way to work instead of going only by train or by car.

I didn’t originally intend to apply for a role. The whole thing started with my son not really caring to go to a music camp this year and i suggested the alternative to apply to the local summer theatre Finns. And as they wanted a parent’s signature and comments on the application form, i said i could help with something simple like carrying the crates or something. To this, the producer Jonna asked whether i might be intrested in a role instead, and, well, here we are. But i’m happy she did and i’m happy we got the roles. My son plays Tommy, the neighbour kid, and he’s doing an awesome job.

Half of the cast is children, half are adults and whatever you should call 17 year olds. One fun thing is that on production, we are all colleagues and age doesn’t matter. What matters is your attitude and how you do your thing. Just the fact that i can sit and talk with a twelve year old, in total seriousness (or total madness, which also often is the case), is something i value immensely.

We’ve played through June, and unfortunately, there’s only this week left. After that, i’m left with a gaping social void and a well needed vacation. I kinda miss my crew already. They are just the bestest.

If you’re fluent in Swedish, you can read all about it on Efraim’s Logg.