At the dress rehearsal Kelly told us he was getting over a cold, but not to worry because he was getting better. He did, however, ask for blessings to come his way. He then told us why he does what he does and why doing a great show was so important to him. He relayed a story of when he sat in an audience and experienced a life-changing event. I don’t know about the other performers, but I definitely understood what he felt. I’ve felt it too.
Last night at the concert Kelly stood before an auditorium full of friends and family and apologized (something he did to the performers an hour before…) but in the end he entertained like a pro. He did a fabulous job. I’ve known Kelly for only a few months. I knew I liked him when he mentioned that he mentored under a man who I greatly admire, Dr. Ed Thompson, the man for whom the venue in which we sang last night is named.
Those of us who enjoy not only watching musical theater but participating in it, the combination of music and dialogue and dancing creates an experience like none other and Kelly brought that feeling to me as a member of a choir, something I don’t know if I’ve ever felt before while singing in a choir.
I watched Kelly last night bring out the best in us and make us better than we thought we could be. A good leader (which is what a conductor is…) must first love and believe in what he or she is doing. Only then can they transfer that passion to those who follow. And if those who follow are willing, the results can be unbelievable. Kelly, you made us believe in you. We prayed for you, we excelled with you, and we would follow you to the ends of the earth. Thank you Music Man!