It is what it is--the long day. There are many, many tasks to accomplish: dismantling the set in the Dungeon, packing it and EVERYTHING else we might possibly need (costumes, props, make-up, shoes, hats, concessions, headsets, backstage box, extension cords, power tools, paint, etc,) into the KidsPlay trailer (thank goodness we have it), moving it the theatre, unpacking, sorting, reassembling the set, dressing up the lobby, costumes in the dressing room, concessions under the table, make-up station, sound checks, under the lights for the first time. It's a day I anticipate--a huge milestone in the life of the production--and a day that I dread, dread the pressure of it--dread being confronted, however innocently--with things I hadn't thought of, or worse--haven't yet had time to accomplish. I dread technical difficulties which set us back an hour or two, and dread the reproachful look of parents who have long since gotten over the novelty of the demands of theatre. Their mouths smile but their eyes say, "And HOW long did you say this would take?" "WHEN can I take my child home?" And, "Seriously, you want to run it AGAIN?" It's a stressful day, a day when the worst has happened and the best has happened. Ask me. I'll tell you.
It's always a blessing when it goes smoothly. Set fits in nicely. A limited number of times back to the Dungeon for what we forgot. Parents smiling and laughing. No ghosts in the machines. People show up when they're expected and everything stays on schedule.
So, you're asking. What's the point of this entry? What went wrong? Right? What anecdote do you have for us? Here it is.
Water. There was no water at the theatre on that Sunday afternoon, on that Long Day. They were working on the water lines in the street, confident that on a Sunday, businesses would be closed and not be too inconvenienced by no water. The streets were empty, the shops wre closed, except for the hustle and bustle of the Little Theatre That Could and the 42 children in the cast.... 42 children who needed to use the restroom....repeatedly, constantly.
And I thank god for my stage parents: the one whose child is long gone from KidsPlay, but pulls our trailer and helps with our set; the one who engineered the decoration and design of our fabulous award-winning (well...it SHOULD be award-winning) lobby; the ones who manage the costumes and 'wrangle' the children; the ones who are involved for the first time and get totally caught up in the KidsPlay magic; and the one who walked those children over to Little Italy's Pizza and back EVERY time someone needed to go to the restroom. How many times do you think 42 children NEED to go to the restroom between the hours of 9 a.m. and 6 p.m.? Hmmm? Have you done the math on that? I hate to think.
Was I made aware of this? Really, not until late in the day. Because the Little Theatre That Could is made up of Parents Who Can...and Do. Why bother Chris with it? She's worrying about other things--we'll handle restroom duty. In fact, we'll handle everything. Don't you worry. Sit back and enjoy the fruits of your labor. We've got this one.
An amazing group I'm blessed with. Truly.