It’s the day of the show y’all!

Opening Night.

The morning of “THE” show, you wake up in rabid anticipation (OK I actually woke up because someone was texting me mere minutes before my alarm was supposed to go off), and the first thought that pops into your head is “Oh…my God.  Tonight is the night of nights. I have been rehearsing this show for weeks and now all the work will be presented in flawless theatrical form.” (All right, what I really thought was, “UGH. What day is it?  Do I really need to wake up? I feel like I JUST got back from New York a few hours ago. Oh wait. I did.”)

In truth, as I woke up, showered, and consumed a Venti Pike Place, my brain slowly registered that tonight is opening night for “Blessed Event.”  But for me, this is a very different opening night.

I have never had an opening night as a director.  What a strange feeling!  It’s not like an opening night when I’m an ACTOR.  Normally, as an actor, I wake up with a sense of, “Tonight, I will be amazing. I can control my staged fate this evening.”

As a director, thoughts run more to the tune of “Holy crap.  I gave all the notes I could up through dress rehearsal and now…I must let the show RUN ITS OWN COURSE.” As a human, as a theatre connoisser, and as a director…I must RELINQUISH CONTROL.

Trust is not an issue here, so don’t go accusing me of being a terrible person JUST yet.  As an actor onstage opening night, I have to go in with unfettering trust for my fellow actors.  We are all in this TOGETHER.  

I mean, Jim and I, we cast this show together. I have faith in these artists…these…FRIENDS.  But I can already see myself squirming in my seat with anticipation…but why!? WHY?!

Here are some of my thoughts:

-as an actor, you are stuck onstage

BUT as a director, you are stuck IN THE AUDIENCE amongst the reactions and non-reactions and grunts and laughing and tears and people asking for cough drops and passing each other tissues and yelling too loudly when their hearing aids aren’t on.  On stage, I feel as though I have some control over getting people’s attention.  In the audience, I have to be…part of the audience. Wait. Maybe that’s the problem.

Thank you, blog. I just realized something.  I’m NOT going to be onstage.  I’m part of the audience.  Jim and I helped to create this artwork.  We shaped it, the actors made it grow into something beautiful, and now, we needs must separate from the work and let it be.  It belongs to the ACTORS and the AUDIENCE now.

My God.

Now I know what my parents felt like when I got my license.  Or went to prom.  Or flew across the country by myself. 

I suppose it’s the same thing we learned when we were getting our Acting B.F.A’s…you spend hours, weeks, MONTHS training and rehearsing, and then you have to let it all go and just trust in yourself and everyone else involved that it will be a beautiful and wonderful experience all on its own.

My GOD. Maybe I AM a terrible person!  I take it back.  This IS about trust.  Okay, well.  I know I can trust myself as an actor.  But perhaps tonight, for the first time, I need to trust myself…as a director.

I don’t know about you, but I feel better now.

PS COME SEE THE SHOW. Obvs. Our box office person said that she’s never seen ticket sales this brisk in her 6 years at the Windham Theatre Guild! Holla at yo girl.


5 thoughts on “It’s the day of the show y’all!

  1. Like marionettes dancing on strings, we respond to the path we’ve been ordered to follow. The directions and instructions shouted lovingly at us bounce through our heads…

    Turn out, look up, volume high… Drop the hands, sit down, more energy, and for the love of God we have to see your face.

    I thought “The Matrix” would have been a great movie, if they had only replaced Keanu Reeves with someone or something better. Like maybe, a block of wood with a mean face drawn on it.

    I thought that “There’s Something About Mary” could have been fabulous, if only Cameron Diaz has been shot or something in the first scene. Maybe hit by a cement truck. Yeah, that would have been great.

    One bad actor can ruin a show. At least for me. But even more noticeable would be a production with great actors and a bad director. We didn’t have a great director for this show, we had two of them. And they complimented each other in just the right way.

    It took me a while, I’m not really an actor. I had to learn how to respond to what these two people were telling me. Because of them I realize I have no idea what it means when a director tells me to ‘punch the word,’ but I rock out hard when they tell me to ‘be more sarcastic.’

    I’ve had a wonderful time getting ready for this show, and we haven’t had a single performance yet. It would have been a lot less enjoyable had I been directed by someone who thought that ‘being more dramatic’ actually means to just talk slower.

    Thanks, Casey. You really made this an experience for me, and I won’t soon forget it.

  2. Dear, dear Casey…

    You had nothing to worry about, my dear…the play was amazing! We laughed, we teared up, we sighed, and we were touched to the core! You, and your family, should be very proud of what you’ve accomplished…we sure are!!

    Dot and Mark 😉

    1. Thank you, Dot!!!

      I am SO HAPPY you both were able to make it. I put a lot of myself into the show and I am beyond ecstatic that people were able to connect with it on so many levels. What a wonderful pay-off!!

      Much love to you guys! 🙂

  3. Chris,

    I think the biggest challenge we had with this show was “Who are we going to cast?” But then all of you showed up and made it an easy decision to cast you and the people you now work with onstage.

    This has been an amazing experience. I have learned a lot about directing, but even more about acting. It was such a growing experience for me to be able to sit back, watch what you guys had to offer, and really collaborate on the best way for the show to go.

    Thank you for your kind words. They mean a lot to me and I will NEVER forget my very first experience directing a theatre production! Thanks for being such a wonderful, charming, and emotionally deep actor. You helped make directing this show a blessing!! Now make sure to kick some more ass tonight!!! 🙂

  4. Boy, you really nailed it here, Case! The hardest part of directing for me is letting go! But it was easier this time for me than with other show that I wrote and co-directed. I think it was easier because I had absolute faith in the wonderful actors that we cast, and I knew that, between you and I, we gave them every possible note and viewpoint possible.
    Working with you and with these other incredible artists is an experience that will live on in this old heart forever.
    Look at what a wonderful thing it is that we have accomplished together!
    You deserve to be SO PROUD OF YOURSELF!!!!!!!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s