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  • Mark Parker

My Fair Lady 2006 - Violated, Used, Broken & Abandoned.

Despite having competed in a couple of amateur Latin dance competitions. My Fair Lady was the first large scale production I was involved in after around 10 months of full time training at Dansar Productions. Although in many ways this would prove a triumphant feat it would also include some of my first major violations relating to the toxic nature of the dance industry & corporate enterprise.

I actually nearly pulled out last minute when I discovered that my bio had been adulterated in ways that left me feeling completely violated. I'm unsure how close the following is to the bio I provided. However, I recently found this rough draft in a pad just after a letter I never ended up sending to Katherine who'd left me whilst training for this performance & in-between which I had left no stone unturned in painstakingly undertaking my first fully "sober" & most significant 4 step...

Although the above version certainly required some tidying up words cannot describe how violated I felt reading the bio below on Pg 20 of the production program...

To have something so intimately precious to me I'd done my best to express to go beside my cast photo - scrapped & replaced without outright lies as a means of promoting "Dancar Productions" was for me a far greater violation than being physically raped.

However, between having invested countless hours of hard work into training & rehearsals in preparation for a production that I was otherwise excited & proud to be a part of, & not wanting to let down some of my peers who I'd become quite fond of - I had little choice but to compromised various values in order to live out the rest of that particular "dream".

One of those I didn't want to let down was Carissa A. Neate-Lammers who had been one of my Ballet teachers at Dancar Productions & was to the day possibly the all time best teacher I've ever had. She was able to give you like 100 corrections in a space of five minutes yet do so in a constructive manner that still left you feeling encouraged & positive.

To get an idea of the scale of the production I have provided a full copy of the 28 page program below which included a 28 member cast with 9-10 3 hour performances at the Norwood Concert Hall over a week period.

We were only in 3 dance sets. However, despite being a three hour production it was a crazy fulltime job backstage in between costume changes. I only really remember two of the three sets being the cockney one & the races. After all how could anyone forget the never ending experience of trying to hold like a 7-8minute pause completely dead frozen in a full tails tuxedo whilst they actors did their set. Nothing like not being able to move to give you an itchy nose & fuck me was it hot & claustrophobic in a tuxedo. Hopefully the only time I'll ever have to experience that again.

Aside from the gripes I had an absolute ball performing throughout the week. I knew Mum & Wal would come & see me but couldn't believe it when I came out to find the entire family including Nanna & I presume grandpa were there. They were so proud of me & all the work I'd put into both my recovery & the performance.

I bought Dad a ticket but was probably silly getting it for a Sunday session as it meant that he had run out of Methadone & was in withdrawal. Nevertheless, he wouldn't have missed an opportunity to see his son dance for the world & was able to make it through a couple of hours to see two out of our three dance sets. Although, I didn't get the chance to see him I know he was there as he was embarrassingly proud of me & would bring it up in front of others for years. As someone who'd otherwise experienced such tremendous pain, Dad seemingly lived off moments like that through my success & of course the time he saw my brother Durc play roller-hockey. I wish my Durc only knew how proud Dad was of his achievements too. You just can't fake that shit!

Unfortunately, after having an absolute ball things took a turn for the worst during the final performance & I ended up blowing two discs in my lumber spine whilst executing a lift with Carissa for one of the final poses. What basically happened was that whilst Carissa was up in the air the couple getting into their floor pose in front of us nocked me off my centre - I could have bailed but my instinct was not to drop Carissa & probably not wanting to fuck up the performance which was a costly mistake as I could have bailed in a manner that was safe for everyone in the vicinity. I knew I'd done serious damage as in addition to the pain I recall the sound of the discs blowing echoing up my spine as I took the full impact. I remember staying composed until I got down the stairs backstage & fell in a heap.

Over the following months I'd believe my life was over as the MS Society just refused to respond to any of my attempts to file an incident report so I could at least get the cost of treatment covered. FUCKEN pack of CUNTS!!!!

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