The Time Has Come This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine.


   Musicals were my life. Iknew from the moment I saw "The King and I" that I would be on-stage,singing and acting, forever. The thought felt so magical, so absolute, I knew ithad to be right.

Shortly after I made this decision, "Bye ByeBirdie" auditions were announced at school. I practiced my song for weeksand rehearsed my monologue over and over. I was completely prepared.

Theday came, and I threw my heart into my performance. After all, this was what Iwas meant for. I went home knowing I would play the lead. I had tried my hardestand was sure I outshone even the brightest stars.

The next day, Ipractically ran to the cast list, fingers crossed. I scanned the page for my name... and landed at the bottom. I was in the chorus. Not even a single line wasallotted to my character. I fought back tears as I walked away.

For days,all I could think about was the terrible injustice I had suffered. Why should I,an experienced musician and actress, be bested by a mere freshman with no theaterexperience? If I had tried my best and was condemned to a minuscule role, whatkind of actress was I?

My friends said I deserved better; my parents saidnot to give up. None of that mattered. I had hit rock bottom. Everything I hadever hoped or wished for had been snatched away by cruel reality. My dreams layshattered on the stage floor.

Three days later I had a realization: myinability to succeed in this area did not mean crushing devastation, but that Imust consider other options to find my true place in life. We are all givengifts, and my mission was no longer to sing on-stage, but to find my genuinetalent.

Until I found my niche, I would not allow small failures to causeme distress. I was not a talentless burden to society, but a wonderfullypromising person who had not yet discovered her gift.

I now aminvolved in flag corps and percussion class and plan to take up swing dancing andtae kwon do. I have not completely given up on singing and acting; I am still intwo choir classes, take voice lessons and am involved in the theater program. Myvoice teacher and I are now pursuing a completely different, perhaps operatic,voice.

As for "Bye Bye Birdie," I am diligently attendingrehearsals and playing my part to its fullest. I have discovered that life ismuch more fun when you make the best of even the worst situations. When all wassaid and done, the script was reworked so I have one line: "Motorboatraces!" I plan to blow the audience away with that line.

I havelearned there comes a time in all our lives when we must shed our childishselfishness, give up our juvenile fantasies and come to terms with who we reallyare, regardless of who we would like to be. For me, that time has come.




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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