Sunday, May 30, 2010

A "Plaid-tastic" Day!

I closed my current show today. This is always a bittersweet thing. The sweet - I LOVE what I do and LOVE my time when I'm there. The bitter - the drive, the time away from family and sacrifices that are made to be there. I went into this job a little blind. Well, everyone involved did. I mean, I knew my job title. Music Director. I would teach the songs that were in show and then put together a group of musicians to play for the productions. Easy enough. I've done it many times before. I knew "of " the music. They were from an era gone by and in a similar show. Right? WRONG! The show was a new production. And when I say new - I mean NEW! Greasepaint Theatre was the FIRST theatre to put this show on. It was still being written just 4 months ago. Forever Plaid (original show) is a show consisting of 4 men. The Sound of Plaid (show I was working) is a show consisting of 16 kids, boys and girls and a few extra characters. We added 3 extra little ones to make an additional trio, making our cast 21 kids ranging in age from 7-17 yrs. They could all sing, we heard them audition, but some had never sung in a group or sung harmonies. And these songs weren't easy. And did I mention that they had anywhere from 4-8 parts in harmony? Oh! And did I mention there were 22 songs in the show?! AND did I mention I was IN the show too? The band (piano, bass and drums) are ON stage and I was front and center at the baby grand, in a tux. I conducted with my head and played the whole show. I even had a bit part where I was featured a couple of times. I had my work cut out for me and I have to admit, I came home from the first rehearsal and cried. I felt way like I was in WAY OVER MY HEAD and I feared I wasn't going to be able to pull it off. I almost felt out of my league, but yet still knew somewhere inside that I was capable. I just had to plow through and that we did. Some nights I felt like I was making enemies with kids I didn't even know yet. Yes, there were nights of frustration but then there were what I like to call "a-ha!" moments. We'd plunk out parts until they were blue in the face and I was tired of hearing them and then we'd put them together with accompaniment and I was almost in tears. Not from the frustration but from the pure joy of hearing them! They'd sing and it was GORGEOUS! They made me smile!! Fortunately those moments outshine the bad every time! :)
To top it off - this show was set in 1964 and these kids were not even a twinkle in most of their parents eyes yet. Heck - some of their parents weren't even born yet! So needless to say, we had quite the time teaching them about the era. They didn't know who Marilyn Monroe was or what the Ed Sullivan Show was. We even had to describe was a record and record player was to some. "Oh, you mean those black circle things?" It was educational for everyone involved. So let me share with you what I learned. I learned if I keep my "momma patience" and work hard, it pays off. These kids simply amazed me. If you had asked me about the show just 2 days before we opened, I would've told you not to buy a ticket. (Not really but you get the idea.) It was rough, I'm not gonna lie. But today for the closing show, they showed everyone in attendance what hard work can do. They had an amazing show and they "showed up" for every single one of them! What a great run! GO PLAIDS!

And I would be an awful mother if I didn't add that today my Jonathan was ordained a Deacon. I can't believe he is 12 yrs old. He leaves for scout camp at 6am (thank goodness McD's is open at 5am!) and will be gone all week. I asked him tonight if he was gonna miss us. He replied, "Yeah, but I think I'll survive." Then I asked him if he was gonna miss his Mom and if he wanted a picture of me to remember me. He again replied, "I'll miss ya but I think I'll live without one. I've got you here." (He proceeded to point to his head) Lil' Stinker! Love my Jon-boy!! He's my shy and quiet kid but he's got a sense of humor that will catch you off guard and he knows how to have fun with his friends. I'm not worried and I'm sure he'll have a blast this week!!

And now, I'm off to bed - big day tomorrow.
Stay TOONed!

1 comment:

Laurie M. said...

I'm so glad you are blogging again! Congrats on your show, someday I'm going down there to see you perform! Congrats to Jonathan- I can't believe he's 12!!