Friday, October 24, 2008

Did I figure this out?

Alright, so I never let everyone know how my summer went.  And I think I might have figured out how to add photos to my blog so hopefully it works?  
So, everyone wanted to know how Sacramento, CA was.  It was really wonderful.  I had a blast all summer.  The only thing missing was my family.  But they did come visit during my 2nd to last week there.  They got see me in Hairspray!  So, the entire summer consisted of rehearsals, lack of sleep and pretty good food (sometimes...), and new lifelong friends.  I know it sounds like band camp but that's really what it feels like.  A group of strangers are thrown together for 3-10 wks. and if it works, it's magical.  If not, it can make for some uncomfortable days.  I began my summer (as my first blog stated) as the only black nun, Sis. Sophia in the Sound of Music.  It really was a lot of fun (surprisingly).  I was on stage maybe for a total of 35 minutes in a 2 and a 1/2 hour show.  So there was a lot of down time.  Unfortunately, the second week of the run, I was cramming the insane lyrics and music of my next show, "Sweeney Todd, the Demon Barber of Fleet".  I played a street urchin who's color of choice was drab and dirty gray.  Ugh!  Anyway, it was truly the best theatrical experience of my life.  I worked with the amazing Broadway star Mark Jacoby and Mary Gordon Murray as well as the director (who is also a professor here at UNLV) Glenn Casale.  The music that was performed was just glorious.  Which is funny when you think about the fact that it's a show about revenge and blood and murder.  But all in all it was good old fashioned fun.  My next project was "My Fair Lady" starring the fiery red head Kate Baldwin.  I threw away all my preconceived notions of what Eliza Doolittle is supposed to sound like or be like.  Kate played her in such a strong and stormy way that every night, I really didn't know how the show would end.  I had been looking forward to "My Fair..." all summer because I couldn't wait to get into the costumes.  And oh, what a delight it was.  My hat for Ascot was beautiful.  I even got a photo of myself in Eliza's hat (yes, it looked just like the one in the movie)!  I love costumes.  There was a ball, I got to waltz while the stage revolved and rose, and I was featured as one of the two maids that sings the show favorite, "I Could Have Danced All Night".   After "My Fair", I finally got to leave the stages of London, for Baltimore in "Hairspray".  I played one of the Dynamites who basically is one of the Supremes.  It was a fun show, I danced again, even a dance called, The Dirty Boogie!  My partner and I did the "G" version when my kids were there.  And yes, there was a lot of hair.  During all these main shows, I was one of two performers who was asked to do the Cabaret for the theatre patrons.  What was so fun about that was that I got to sing old standards that aren't heard anymore.  I got to sing Come Rain or Come Shine, Ain't Misbehavin', The Nearness of You, and even When You Wish Upon A Star.  It was the most fun 30 minutes of my life.  In the end, it was a wonderful summer and I learned a lot about my craft, and my strengths and also my weaknesses.  But I truly did make some wonderful friends.  And I did a lot of talking about the Church.  And I mean a lot.  And in some of the oddest places.  The laundrymat, backstage, and my favorite was in a bar.  Yep, a smoke filled alcohol infested bar.  But what do you do when someone asks you about your religion?  Opportunity is not a lengthy visitor (thank you Sondheim) so we as "misionaries" have to take what we can get.  So, there I was, sitting in a bar talking to Sweeney Todd and Mrs. Lovett about our prophet, what we believe and why we believe it.  Hmm...  I also met the amazing Faith Prince (who I worked with back in '05 in Seattle) again and she remembered me.  But alas, anyway, it was a great summer and I hope that I am blessed again to perform and make lifelong friends.  It really is amazing how powerful theatre is and how it really does change lives, even if just for for 2 and 1/2 hours.  Enjoy the photos, if they load.