Lessons from the Stage

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Thanks to Lance Wadlow for taking this photo of me as Madame Toodaloo.

Last night I was in a fashion show with the teens at my library (The Hays Public Library), and it was fantastically fun. We wore handmade outfits constructed out of repurposed items like packaging peanuts. It reminded me of other times I have found myself on the stage. Often, I say I am a retired actress because I grew up in and around theatre productions. My mom runs Taos Children’s Theatre, so I was cast in many of her productions. Even if I was not in the production, there was a strong possibility that I would be helping with props or scenery.

Theatre is a very special type of art because, like music, it happens in the moment. We can record the production, but there is nothing that really replicates being in the audience, or being part of a production. It is inspiring to see a production evolve and come to fruition. There are many times when you might think “This is really iffy, I’m not sure it will all come together,” but it does work out eventually. Not matter what, the show must go on!

The best part about being in an event or production, is getting to work with a group toward a common goal. Theatre helps you realize that you are part of something larger. The show has a life of its own, and sometimes it seems as though it has a mind of its own. Like most art forms, the result of your efforts is a collaboration between your vision and your materials. When creating a fashion show, you are dealing with more than just fabric, paper, and cloth, you are collaborating with people and they have great ideas. It is amazing what can be accomplished by working together. We all had a bit of stage fright, but we faced our fears and made the best of our time in the limelight.

There were many different people who helped the fashion show be a success. I am very grateful to our volunteers, the teens, the library staff, The Hays Academy of Hair Design, Andree Brisson, and Scott Rader (the MC and DJ). Also, thanks to my mom for making the most awesome curtains!

In what ways has theatre touched your life?

What are your favorite memories of working with a group toward a common goal?

What is the most amazing production you have seen?

How would you describe your personal style?

Warning Grammar Question: Do you prefer to use “theatre” or “theater,””actor” or “actress”? Why?

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