Charlotte's Web has opened! We've had 10 performances in South Carolina and Florida thus far. It feels like we've been on the road for months and it's incredible to think that we have five and a half more months to go. It's a long time to spend working on one show.
It's also a long time to be away from home, which I didn't really think about until now. During rehearsals, you get so swept up in preparing for performances that you don't really think about the fact that you're leaving behind your life for several months and entering into an entirely new way of living.
And making that adjustment is difficult. You spend most of the day in a car. You live out of a heavy suitcase that you have to carry up and down stairs everyday. You get tired of the limited food options very quickly. You spend more time loading/unloading the set than you spend performing. No matter what you do, you always feel tired and a little dehydrated. You miss your friends and family back at home. You miss your apartment. You miss being able to walk everywhere. Hell, you even miss MTA, because even they aren't as bad as the exact-change only Florida toll booths that make no sense whatsoever.
It's hard way to live, especially for several months. So when you experience the moments that make it all worth it, you cherish them with all of your might.
Luckily, I've already had a few of the moments. The kids we perform for are amazing. I have never performed for audiences primarily composed of children, and it's a vastly different experience. For one thing, you know instantly if they're are engaged or not. They vocalize everything they are feeling. So while it can be discouraging when you can hear them getting bored, it's an incredible feeling when you know they are riveted and amazed by your performance. For most of them, this was their first experience seeing theatre. Hopefully thanks to me and the rest of the cast, they will want to see even more.
So whenever I become overly-cranky from getting up at 5:00am for the past several days, I can think about the little girl who hugged me after the show as if we were best friends as her mother took her picture with me. I can think about the second performance when I made my first entrance and the crowd happily gasped "Charlotte!". A life in the theatre can be really difficult, but it certainly is never boring and always full of surprises. And no matter how frustrated or tired I may be, I wouldn't have it any other way.
Until next time!
Please note that the views on this blog are my personal opinion, and not those of Theatreworks USA, any of the theaters I will be performing at, or the Internet at large.