Aura of a Genius Actor Chapter 19

Chapter 19 - I've Memorized Everything

༺ I’ve Memorized Everything ༻




  “It’s okay. We’re the only ones here right now. Go ahead and step up.”


  It felt strange.


  One step, two steps.


  As though committing a permitted sin, Yoomyeong cautiously ventured out of the pocket.


   The grandeur permeating the performance hall made his legs tremble even though the seats were completely empty.


  Upon reaching the center stage, he took a deep breath and turned his body to face forward.




  The seats spreading out far below and up high were watching him.


  A stage wider than any he had ever stood on. On the stage, where only the greatest artists of this land had passed, Yoomyeong took a deep breath.


  And then.




  All the lights in the theater went out.


  Before he could even discern what was happening…




  A single spotlight fell from above his head.


  His entire body shuddered.


  Due to the gap between the brightly lit stage and the darkened seats, he could only faintly see the audience.


  And so he could imagine.


  ‘I am an actor. The 3,500 spectators are staring at me, not a single, empty seat in sight.’ 


  Thump—  Thump— 


  His heart pounded as though it might burst.


  Yoomyeong’s mouth opened. Licking his dry lips, he spoke a single line of dialogue.


  “To be or not to be, that is the question.”


  The huge vacuum tube transmitted the absorbed line without any loss to the audience.


  When his own words echoed in the air of the auditorium, becoming the ‘actor’s words’ and returned to his ears, Yoomyeong felt a sense of fulfillment that was mixed with the realization of his own inadequacy to fill this place. 


  ‘Let’s become an actor who can fill this place. I can do it in this lifetime.’


  With closed eyes, Yoomyeong heard an auditory hallucination. 


  The endless downpour of applause felt as if it could deafen him.


  From that day on, Yoomyeong’s goal became to be a lead actor who could truly stand in the Sujeondang super theater.




  Sung-jin returned to his office and poured a cup of coffee.


  “Haha, were you surprised earlier? Your expression looked so real.”


  “It was a lot. Thank you, brother.”


  “What for? I’m not the one paying the electricity bill.”


  “I’ll become an actor who uses a lot of electricity here in the future!”


  Sung-jin chuckled at Yoomyeong’s bold declaration. 


  He looked at the clock, and it was half past four. He had to go to a set-up meeting for another performance.


  “I need to leave now, but you’ll have some free time before the theater festival. Do you want to watch how a performance is prepared?”


  “Huh? Can I?”


  At that point, one of Sung-jin’s colleagues in the office interjected.


  “Theater Festival? Are you talking about perfume? We had a chaotic time setting up today.”




  “During the festival, there’s a different production every day, which means we have to set up a new stage and lighting every day. But today, there was a delay in the transportation of the stage for one of the teams, and it only arrived this morning.” 


  “Ugh… just hearing it sounds awful. Were you in charge, brother?”


  “Yeah. The stage director really struggled, and I had to adjust the lighting setup until 30 minutes before the performance… sigh.”


  “You’ve had it tough. You look like you’ve aged about three years.”


  “Yeah, I’m exhausted. I’ll leave early today. If you need to arrange a tour, just use my name.”


  Sung-jin easily obtained permission. The director, who felt sorry for the perfume theater staff due to the accident, gladly accepted Sung-jin’s minor request. 


  Sung-jin told him to take a good look around and left, and Yoomyeong sat in the back of the audience, watching the rehearsal while sharing mild critiques with Miho.


  ‘I wondered about the assembly stage, but they’ve managed to keep its characteristics well.’


  {The lead actor’s performance is subpar. He lacks the ability to play Grenouille.}


  ‘Isn’t it? It might be better once the actual performance starts, don’t you think?’


  It was then that it happened.


  One side of the stage seemed to shake.




  Just as Yoomyeong doubted his eyes, a part of the stage backdrop fell and hit the leg of the lead actor who was in the middle of his performance.




  There was an accident.


  “Turn on the lights!”


  “What? What’s happening!”


  “Ugh… Ah…”


  In an instant, the inside of the theater was filled with chaos and screams.


  The lead actor was rolling on the floor, clutching his ankle. Yoomyeong also jumped up in surprise. He thought he saw something red.


  “Are you okay?! Someone call an ambulance!”


  “Oh… no… the evening performance… Ah.”


  “Are you crazy?! You’re bleeding heavily right now. Isn’t that an arterial bleed? Can someone get a bandage?”


  “Here’s a piece of clothing! Tie it with this!”


  Ten minutes later.


  The actor was carried out to the ambulance that had arrived.




  30 minutes later, the director received a message stating that the actor had ‘serious injuries and needed absolute rest for several days.’ 


  The cause of the accident was that a part of the hastily assembled stage in the morning wasn’t secured properly and fell.


  “Does anyone know Grenouille’s lines?”


  “Who would memorize all that? The main character’s lines consist of more than half of the script.”


  “Then does anyone know it roughly?! We need to proceed with the performance!”


  “Let’s give up and contact the association and the office. How can anyone memorize the blocking (the movements of the actor on stage) and lighting cues along with all the lines? It’s going to be a mess.”


  “…Are we going to give up just like that? Give up on the Hyejeondang theater performance? I can’t do that.”


  The sharp, Busan dialect flew around.


  The director and actors, who couldn’t even follow their colleague to the hospital despite the injury, were torn between their dream performance and the realistic barriers, their eyes red.


  {Hmm… This is interesting.}


  Yoomyeong, who had been watching the scene of the accident in frustration, expressed his puzzlement at Miho’s inappropriate comment.


  ‘Interesting? What do you mean…?’


  {I’ll use ‘that’ thing I’ve been keeping.} 




  Before Yoomyeong could understand what was being said, an alert rang.

The spirit fox wants to use the contracted reward, ‘Possession (0/1)’.

Your ego is causing a rejective reaction.


You cannot refuse. It will be enforced.


  And then, Yoomyeong felt the strength draining from his body.


  He had lost control over his body.


  {Wh… What is this…? Miho! Miho!}


  Yoomyeong yelled with all his might, but his voice didn’t come out. His body, irrelevant to his own intentions, suddenly rose and slowly walked forward.


  “What if I play that role?”




  An excessively refreshing tone cut through the members who were in a state of shock. They were surprised and turned their attention to the unfamiliar man.


  ‘Ah, this person is an actor.’


  The way he walked, the resonance in his voice, and the strong presence he exuded made everyone certain that this man was an actor. 


  However, no matter how exceptional the actor, the notion of taking on the lead role when there were less than two hours before the performance was another matter.


  “Director, who is this person?”


  “He’s the guy that the Hyejeondang theater staff was talking about when he told us that there would be someone watching the rehearsal. Uh… are you, by any chance, an actor?”




  {Hey, what are you doing?! Have you gone crazy?!}


  Yoomyeong was frantic, but Miho didn’t respond. Instead, it threw an even more provocative comment.


  “There’s an hour and thirty minutes left. It’s more than enough. I can deliver a much more satisfying performance than the original lead. Oh, and of course, I won’t take any performance fee.”


  Holding back the members who felt uncomfortable with this impudent and suspicious man, the director spoke.


  “Your timing with your lines is laughable, but given the dire situation, I’ll ask with a desperate mindset. What about memorizing the script?”


  “Ah. The script. I’m a genius, so I’ll memorize it quickly.”


  “Excuse me?”


  “Can I have a look at the script?”


  The director handed the script over with a shaky hand.


  The man flipped through the script. He skimmed through the pages at a speed that made one doubt if he was actually reading properly. In the span of about ten minutes that it took to flip through the entire script, the tension in the theater reached a suffocating level. 




  The man, who closed the script with a ‘thump’ sound, spoke in a refreshingly cheerful tone.


  “I’ve memorized it all.”


  “What? This crazy bi


  “Yeonho, hold on a minute! The third act of the second part, how does Grenouille’s line start?”


  The man’s mouth opened without a moment of hesitation.


  “There are two paths to Grasse. A shortcut through the city and a detour through the mountains and fields. Naturally, I chose the second. A place without the stench of humans. The fewer people there were, the fainter the stench became. Apart from the faint smell of earth and wind, it was a perfect odorlessness. AhI felt ecstasy.”


  “…Then…what about the last line in Act 3, Scene 6?”


  “With this, 24 perfumes have been completed. All that’s left is Laure Richis, the owner of the most captivating perfume. For the completion of the world’s most perfect perfume, you, too, must die.”


  “No way, how could you…?”


  “Is this even possible…?”


  The members couldn’t hide their astonishment and let out a groan.


  “Wow. You’re incredible. Who are you? No, let’s discuss that later, so please do well!”


  “Do you have the cue sheet and blocking diagram?”


  One member hastily brought over the script and materials left by the lead actor who had been rushed away.


  Yoomyeong, no, the spirit fox quickly scanned those materials with its eyes and nodded its head.


  “Since we are short on time, let’s proceed with a technical rehearsal. Just check the parts that don’t match and let me know.”


  The rehearsal started immediately.


  The spirit fox followed the actors backstage.


  The actors, filled with awe and curiosity, stole glances at it but couldn’t bring themselves to strike up a conversation.


  Soon, the lights in the theater went off and the BGM ominously played.


  Thump— Thump— 


  As the sound of something being pounded was heard, the music abruptly cut off and the lights came on.


  A butcher was pounding leather in the center of the stage. A wet nurse appeared from the left pocket.


  “Okay, next


  The wet nurse takes the money from the butcher and tucks it into her apron. The lights go out.


  “Okay, next scene


  In a play, there’s something called a ‘cue’.


  It’s a signal set to turn the lights on and off, and to turn the sound on and off. 


  In this scene, the sound of the actor playing the butcher pounding on the leather was the cue to turn the sound off and the lights on, and the cue for ending this scene and turning off the lights was when the wet nurse put her hand in her apron pocket. 


  During a technical rehearsal, the changes in sound, lighting, and set design are rapidly run through without the acting, matching each cue. Of course, a skilled understanding of the flow of the show was required, and even actors who have been rehearsing for a long time often falter if they forget their cues.


  Therefore, it was absurd to think that an actor who suddenly appeared just before the performance could follow the cues based solely on the cue sheet. 




  {Trace cues, blocking.}


  When the spirit fox, who was in the pocket and due to make its entrance muttered a spell to itself, blue, glowing lines appeared on the stage.


  Some lines shone brighter, while some were dimmer.


  These were the lingering traces from today’s daytime performance.


  Without any hesitation, Miho stepped forward onto one of those lines.




  “Director, am I seeing things?”


  “I thought my eyes were playing tricks on me, too.”


  “There are actually people like this in the world? Seoul is really different.”


  Without deviating from the planned route or making any mistakes in cues, the technical rehearsal was finished in just 30 minutes. But what was truly surprising was not the near-miraculous talent to memorize the script in one go nor the ability to match the cues of a show he was seeing for the first time.


  ‘I… I can’t take my eyes off him.’


  He wasn’t even fully acting yet and was just quickly matching the established cues, but he had an irresistible presence on the stage.


  Everyone watching wanted to ask who this actor was and how such a thing was possible, but there was no time.


  “Rehearsal OK! Everyone, move quickly!”


  The countdown to the show began.






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Aura of a Genius Actor

Aura of a Genius Actor

Score 9.99
Status: Completed Native Language: Korean
[Winner of the 5th Korea Web Novel Contest] He cast his very being into a life of acting, only to go unrecognized.   But now, his life begins anew


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