Author's note: This isn't really a book.... I just figured it was too long for the regular memoir section!
TheaterFor as long as I can remember, I’ve loved to perform. In preschool, I was always the one you could hear at the Thanksgiving Luncheon. In first grade, I wasn’t afraid to do a solo at the holiday concert, and the year I turned eight, I became a part of “show business.” I joined the Off Broad Street Players Theater Company in 2004, with their theater camp. This past summer, I participated in my sixth annual summer camp, and I plan on going until my parents unfairly force me to get a summer job.
The happiest times I’ve had in my entire life have been when I was onstage or backstage. My best friends are from theater. In what I call the “regular world,” people are separated, as if some are royal and some are mere peasants. In the “theater world,” it’s as if all of the great civil rights activists have come together. In OBSP, all men and women and children are created equal. Not one person in theater is better than another. One person may have a better singing voice, or be better than acting, but every person can be themselves. You don’t have to wear the mask that you do in every day life. You can do or say whatever comes to your mind, and not be afraid that people are going to judge you. AH-HA!!!! Look what word comes into play once again. JUDGE. You know you’re being judged when there’s a pit in your stomach the size of the town of Shiloh. Granted, my home town may be only one square mile, but everything seems bigger in your stomach. Here’s where I pause and wait for you to laugh. Go ahead, let it out. I’m no comedian, but even serious I can crack a joke now and then. Okay, now that you’ve possibly fallen off of your chair, or, if you have a sense of humor the size of Shiloh (ba-dum-bum tshhhh), not, then let me continue. Judges are to be left in the courtroom.
I’ve never done a single thing in theater that I regretted. I hate having to hold back every impulse to start singing as I’m walking down the hall, or to start dancing while I’m in the middle of a crowd of people. I can be myself around the people I love the best. Also, with the Off Broad Street Players, every one is big on feeling good. I could’ve had the worst day ever, in the history of school. My friends take one look, and for the rest of the night, people are giving me hugs and telling me jokes that keep me laughing until the terrible day is just a distant memory.
Just last month, I was in A Christmas Carol. Now tell me, where else can you eat your dinner outside, after dark, at a high school, in a tree, with your best friend, and feel completely content? If you come up with an answer, I owe you a vigorous round of applause.
I have done twelve productions with the Off Broad Street Players. When I go through the playbills, I remember the face of every person that I have ever worked with. I may not know their last names by heart, but I have a shared memory with every one of them. Theater friends are friends for a lifetime.