And this is why we tell the story...
by Leanna Hicks '16
Wow, it seems like forever since I've written a blog post. I sincerely apologize; I know how much y'all have missed reading my weekly posts, but do not fret I am back! (cue thunderous applause, whistles, etc.) "Oh my gosh, you guys stop it, you're too kind!"
Last time, I was discussing my "new mission" of being an assistant stage manager, remember? You're not being graded on this, I'm just catching others up. Well what a mission it has turned out to be. Blocking, memorizing lines, dancing and singing what a handful, so, "why do it if it brings so much work?" Because of the love and passion we have for our craft and because of the family we build in the process.
As a person who has now been able to watch from the "audience" perspective, you can tell when a cast is a true ensemble and a family instead of people who don't truly connect with the other members of their cast. This cast, more than probably any other cast I've ever worked with, are some of the most supportive people I know. Now, I'm sure some of you are thinking "well they're probably just being nice in front of the director", but you would be wrong. A non-theatre major is playing one of the characters in the show. If I were them I would probably be scared walking into a room with all of these theatre and musical theatre majors. Instead of the room being filled with a sense of awkwardness or intimidation, everyone was supportive of him. They helped him along instead of having the attitude of "that's not my job to help him out, you're on your own" which some actors in the real world think that. In the theatre, we are all a family.
I know, 'cheesy' but it's true. In the theatre world, we know that people already think we're crazy for choosing a job that will reject us more times than accept us, that will break our hearts more than any relationship we're ever in, so at the end of the day all we have is each other. We're competing against each other for that certain role half the time, but at the end of the day we're a very weird, crazy, loving family. In the show there is a song called "We Tell the Story" and, while not giving away what happens, the song basically is about how the lives of the people in the show are formed from the stories that are passed down through the generations.
Being an actor in the theatre, you have many "stories" you tell with many different people each time, but in the end we all "tell the story" together. When you have the support and love of your family back home, that's all well and good but the never ending love and continuously growing family one develops in every show you do, will stay with you forever. You've missed the grab a tissue moments haven't you? I have many reasons for why I love the theatre and I could go on and on about it for hours, but we don't have time for that. The passion that I have for this art keeps bringing me back. The effect that my performance can have on someone to the point of tears or laughter, and the family I have at the end of my amazing experience always brings me back.
This experience, while being a completely different adventure, has still brought me joy and an even more overwhelming love for the theatre "and this is why we tell the story." I wait in anticipation for the next amazing journey I take with a brand new family and story to tell and don't worry, I'll keep you posted!