We're putting the final touches on a show that opens next week. We're putting in long hours to make sure it's the best we can make it. Leaving the theater sometimes after 11pm knowing I've got to clock in seven and a half hours later is daunting. And I'm one of the lucky ones--we live the next town over from the theater and we get home quickly.
This is the fifth Christmas show I've done in the past six years. So, basically, since 2012 (except for one year...), I've spent almost every night during October and November rehearsing and performing every other night during December.
That's a lot of hours, a lot of time away from family, away from writing, away from other things--like sleep. This show's been easier for me in some ways--it's the third time I've done this particular version of Dickens's classic tale. But it's been harder because, well...I'm getting older. I don't move as easily as I have in the past. I'm called upon to dance in several numbers. It's fun, but it's taken me longer to learn and commit to memory the choreography.
And then there's the director, the choreographer, and others involved in getting the show on its legs. They push us, push me, at least. In the past five shows, I've worked with four directors. Each has their own vision of what they want to see and we try our best to bring those visions to life. This last show, I feel "encouraged" to not only do my best as a Christmas gift for the audience, but to also have the experience mean more for me personally. They want us to fall in love with the story and have it change our lives, too.
Next week, we perform in front of loved ones, then on Friday we open the show for the public. And when we hit the stage for this show, you'll see a cast that's been given notes, critiques, suggestions, and only a few threats. I know I've worked hard on this one, and because of that, I think I'll enjoy it so much more because of it.
"What a good time!"
"What a fine show!"
In that order. One creating the other.