Tonight I am grateful for the first day bliss that accompanies the casting of our annual Shakespearean play. This year my students will be performing Twelfth Night, and as an added bonus, the rehearsal schedule leading up to the play will be interrupted by the arrival of my second child.
It should make for an interesting May and June.
Prior to our first rehearsal, which takes place tomorrow, this first day of casting and script review radiates with the hope and promise of another outstanding production.
Still absent from my life are the dropped lines, the forgotten blocking, the lost props, the constant chatter backstage and the endless need for more volume from my ten-year old actors.
We perform Shakespeare using the original verse, shortened but otherwise unchanged from the lines used by actors five hundred years ago. It is a challenging, demanding and difficult process to undertake, and until my students actually perform the play onstage, I often find myself wondering why the hell I ever thought this was a good idea.
Then the kids take the stage, act their hearts out, and occasionally bring grown adults to fits of laughter and even tears. Former students, now in high school and college, return to support the young cast, and as I watch my students come together as one, I am reminded of why we do this year after year.
It will hurt, but it will also be worth it.