We had a taste of what it’s like last night with our full dress rehearsal with costumes and make up plus the orchestra in front of an “invited audience.” For years, the GFCT has invited senior citizens from area nursing homes and assisted living centers to watch our performance at no charge. It’s another one of those little-known, thoughtful and generous contributions that the Glens Falls Community Theatre offers the community.
Back to opening night; I was surprised at how nervous I was waiting to go on stage. Mostly from not knowing if my hat would fall off or if I’d freeze in the lights like a deer in the headlights or fall down the stairs or trip on stage or …
But, thankfully, all went well.
That’s what repetition in rehearsals will do for you.
I think I’m ready for an auditorium full of people.
I’ve heard that every audience is different. I’m looking forward to seeing if I can sense that during the performance.
I do find myself getting caught up in the performance that sometimes I forget that I’m supposed to sing. (Shhh, don’t tell Catherine or Wes.)
People who know that this is the first time I’ve been on stage for a GFCT show have asked me how I like it.
Well, I can’t answer that yet until I’ve experienced the entire run of the show. I want to see how it is to perform live in front of an audience first.
I’ll report back with my verdict of how I liked this whole experience of being on stage after Sunday’s performance.
Just as I was questioning why I am doing this, I, along with the entire cast and crew, received the following touching and inspirational email from our production manager, Bruce. He wrote: “You know why we do this?? (well, besides the fact that were are all self absorbed ego maniacs in need of other's approval!!!!!). It's because the folks that come to our shows leave, having been entertained for a couple of hours, and for that time possibly forgot some troubles or illness, remembered a person or fun time from the past or maybe just turned an ordinary ho-hum day into one where they went to bed singing!!!! A lovely lady last evening left the show in her wheelchair singing 76 Trombones - she admitted she didn't know all the words - but she kept on trying and humming anyway!! You think you made her day??? Her week??? And a gentleman struggled up that long aisle with his walker and said to me "Boy that was a lot of hard work to make that show, thank you!!" I said to him " Well, yes but we love it and also have a lot of fun!!!" And you know, those words came out of my mouth with out thinking!! Without thinking of being tired and sore, or being annoyed because something wasn't perfect, or because we had to move our rehearsal, or for whatever selfish reason. I have the luxury of seeing people when the leave after a performance - I wish you guys could too. I know you hear the applause but please, please know also that beyond the audience appreciating your acting, singing and dancing abilities, what they are really saying is "Thank you so much for making my day a littler brighter, more enjoyable, a little less troubled!!!!" So I'll echo the old gent's thoughts - I know how hard you ALL have worked. Thank you! Y'all done GOOD! REALLY GOOD!”
Tears were flowing down my face as I read that. The thought of brightening someone’s day does make all the long hours of rehearsing, waiting, costumes and make up worthwhile.