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For Theater This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine.

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     “I’m back!” Josh cried gleefully as the mirror revealed his made-up face. The person sitting next to me was no longer my friend but Manolo Costazuela of Neil Simon’s “The Odd Couple: Female Version.” Theater is the only place where guys love to wear makeup, I thought, stepping back to evaluate the eyeshadow I had applied to his eyes.

It is now two weeks since our play closed. Looking back at the pre-show excitement, I understand why Josh defined himself with stage makeup. For me, on stage is where I feel my world is perfectly balanced and as it should be. My first performance for an audience was in ninth grade when my friend and I played Things 1 and 2 in a Dr. Seuss play. Seconds before I bolted on stage, I was so nervous I thought I was going to have an accident but afterward, I couldn’t wait to be in the spotlight again.

I have done three shows since then and realize that theater is much more than a group of people memorizing lines and putting on a show. It is a journey of working hard as a team to achieve a common goal: to entertain the audience with a stellar performance. The best reward is a positive reaction from the audience. Their laughter energizes me more than caffeine ever could.

Although taking the leap of faith in myself and co-actors can be terrifying, it is gratifying to face my fear. Another invaluable aspect is the relationships that are formed. While we are hammering together the walls of a set, we are building the bonds of friendships that are as unique as the characters we portray.

Theater has been my most valuable experience. This is where I learn to trust myself and others which leads to exhilaration. In the end, when the spotlights have cooled and the makeup has been washed off, I am thankful I will have the experiences engraved in my memory.

This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. This piece has been published in Teen Ink’s monthly print magazine.






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