There’s No Business Like Show Business

I’ve spent many years of my life doing plays: community theater plays, church plays, school plays, even dinner theater and a touring show. I love theater – love watching it, love performing it, and in the last few years, I have discovered that I love directing it.

(This is me, circa 1985. Where else but theater can you sing into an old phone on a stool while wearing pj’s and a huge bow??)

I am not a professional. I don’t claim to be the best – or even close. But I love theater – especially musical theater – and I want others to love it, too. I think everyone should be involved a production at least once in their lives.

Why?

I’m so glad you asked 🙂

  • It builds confidence. If you have had to sing and dance in front of hundreds of people, giving a three-minute speech about your favorite pastime suddenly doesn’t seem so scary.
  • It makes you a better audience member. Those of us who have been onstage have much more empathy as audience members. We know that the audience sets the tone – that if we clap and laugh, the performers will do even better.
  • It creates unique bonds. Surviving a show with a group of people unites you like nothing else I know. You make memories, have inside jokes; certain smells or sounds or even colors make you laugh hysterically. And your castmates are the only ones who really understand that.
  • It teaches you the importance of teamwork. While there may only be one or two “stars,” everyone involved in the production is vital. Just watch what happens when the lighting guy is gone, or the sound guy steps away.
  • It forces you to think about others. The cast is only part of the equation in a show. The audience is the other part. They need to be drawn in, to enjoy what’s happening onstage. And it’s your job as the cast and crew to make sure that happens.

I could go on, but you get the idea.

This is “spring musical season” all around the country. Schools, churches, and community theaters are offering beautiful productions filled with folks who have sacrificed hours of their time, talents, and energy. You’ve seen the signs in the libraries and the Starbucks, on the marquis and maybe even in a flyer under your windshield. Go! Enjoy one of these shows. Clap and laugh and help those performers do a great job.

And then, if you’re really brave, look in those playbills for opportunities to be involved in a production yourself, even if it is behind the scenes. Paint a set, sew a costume, shop for props. Because….

“There’s no business like show business”!

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