Week 1

I have a lot of exposure to theater which is something I’m really thankful for. I got interested in theater when Hamilton came out and it got me curious about other musicals. A few years after that I joined my high school’s theater program and I fell in love. There was such a supportive community and something about the environment just felt safe. I was able to be part of this group while also getting to be as outspoken as I was comfortable. I think having a space I felt good in and where I was good at something was beneficial for my social life and my self-confidence and overall helped me grow.

I’ve met such a range of people through theater because it has something for everyone. There are kids I met and stories I have been exposed to that I never would have though of without theater. In February, I went to see Spring Awakening at the Roundhouse theater with a couple of friends and it was an amazing experience that 14-year-old me would never have imagined. It was just two of my friends and me. We wanted to go see this show, so we all got tickets and carpooled up to Bethesda. It was actually one of the last things I did before lock down actually and I’m happy I got to go.

The theater teacher would pick the two shows we did every year and it was a decently wide range. My senior year we did A Midsummer Night’s Dream and were going to do How to Succeed in Business without Really Trying (this got cancelled due to covid). We did Fiddler on the Roof, and Macbeth, and Noises Off. I might not have personally enjoyed some of the shows, but they challenged me in different ways. I know the actors found Shakespeare plays very different than modern musicals for obvious reason. As a tech, I got to play around with the show and what the script gives me and what the other tech departments need. It was always interesting to me how much goes in behind the scenes. There is so much planning and design and we were just high school students.

I’ve learned theater skills, like reading through scripts and light and sound design, of course but those were never the focus to me and honestly, they’re not what I’m taking with me from the experience. I learned what a good community is like, how to push my limits, and how to manage my time better. The friends I made through theater were so much more constant than other because we all had a common goal and would be working together during rehearsals. There were those moments of panic when everything is going wrong and the feeling of success after opening night. I’m not saying it was perfect because theater kids are dramatic and there was always something going on, but it was fun and that was enough.

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