Monday, October 15, 2007

E. Lockhart's "Dramarama"

E. Lockhart is the author of The Boyfriend List, The Boy Book, Fly on the Wall, and Dramarama.

She applied the "Page 99 Test" to Dramarama and reported the following:
Dramarama is the most glittery, most ridiculous, most theatrical of my books, and as such it's dear to my heart. It's about two theater-mad, self-invented fabulositon Ohio teenagers.

One boy, one girl.

One gay, one straight.

One black, one white.


It's a season of hormones, gold lamé, hissy fits, jazz hands, song and dance, true love, and unitards -- that will determine their future, and test their friendship.

Page 99 is an audition scene. Sadye, our narrator, is describing the "meat market" -- an initial dance audition at drama school that will determine placement -- and romantic possibilities.

Farrell, Demi's hall counselor and a voice major at Carnegie Mellon, stood by the door with a clipboard and made sure that our names and numbers matched up properly. "Keep your number through tomorrow!" he barked loudly. "You're going to need it! Don't throw it away or you'll have to have a makeshift one and everyone will know you lost it!"

When everyone had filed in, Tamar taught the whole school an easy jazz combo, and then had us come up in groups of twenty to perform it four times, each time sending the front line to the back so new people could step up. Nanette was number 14, Demi was 15, and I was 16 – so we were in the first group.

Nanette was good. I couldn't see her much out of the corner of my eye, but I could tell she had years of lessons behind her.

Demi was his usual ridiculous self, sticking his butt out and wiggling it like a lunatic when he messed up the steps.

I nailed it – if I do say so myself. We took our seats again, flush with the thrill of dancing to Kander and Ebb (the song was "All that Jazz") in front of more than a hundred people – and glad to have gone early because now we could watch the meat.

Blake from Boston was in the next group, and he looked ridiculous.

"Oh, I have to shut my eyes!" whispered Demi. "I'm losing all desire for that poor man."
Read an excerpt from Dramarama and learn more about E. Lockhart and her books at her website.

--Marshal Zeringue