Student blog: Community in the theater
November will always be an important month in my life, and a lot of that stems from my involvement in theater. This is the month I would have auditions for the spring musical in middle school and high school, and currently, in college again.
Now I can listen to the audition stories my younger sister tells me as she does the same until her senior year. Sure, auditions are scary and some might say their least favorite part of the musical season, and I agree to a certain extent, but there’s something fun about auditions too. At my school, we all sat together in our little choir room and looked at and cheered on each other as we stood in front, next to the piano, maybe trying to hide behind the music stand. Fear and excitement met at the same time on the way up. But when you start your song, the fear starts to subside as you get more into your element. Then you’re right up there having fun, giving the best possible performance.
I haven’t always been that way. Previously it was just fear, I was just trying to understand my song, hoping the piano would be louder than me. But that all changed when my manager started pushing me out of my comfort zone. She saw my potential before I could realize it and I’m forever grateful to her that she pushed me, even when I pushed back so hard. And she never gave up on me, even though I made it difficult for her.
Today I love the theater because of what she has done for me and that love will never fade. She is also the reason why I appreciate the community in the theater so much. Sadly, this will be the fourth season of auditions without her. I couldn’t spend my last two years of high school with her, auditioning for her, where she could have pushed me to go even further. It was in losing her that I found the true meaning of community in theater. She is what brought everyone together. Four years ago, everyone she touched suffered immense loss, and we all came together, no matter our age or our role on previous shows, none of it mattered to this. moment. Sharing his heritage is what mattered and the best way we thought to do it was through theater and music.
I had never felt a greater sense of community than at that time. There were a lot of tears shed, but there was also a lot of love in the small choir room that day. We sang all of the quintessential children’s songs in the theater and shared some of our favorite music season stories that made us laugh. Even in the worst of times, the theater can be that strong bond that unites us. And it continues in my life now. Theater can be a great way for you to meet people and make new friends at a new school, college, or at any stage of your life.
This community’s connection is unlike any other and best of all, anyone can be a part of it. We all witness community in theater in some way – whether it’s your own community or maybe the Broadway community that many of us have grown to love. It is a special type of community. A world where we share a common interest, we share our talents with each other and we build each other so that we can all be our best. You won’t find this in every community and that’s what makes us so unique.
Things can be tough at times, but never forget to take a step back and appreciate the people around you and the communities you have built along the way.