“Deadwood Dick, or The Game of Gold”

Well, the party’s over.

The play that we worked on for months–entitled “Deadwood Dick, or The Game of Gold”–played out a couple of weeks ago, and here we sit studying the pictures and reliving the memories of that production.  We have a dedicated and fabulous group of home school students and families and friends who pitch in and make it all possible. We certainly couldn’t do it all on our own. It is an enormous undertaking, but it’s also hugely rewarding.

This is the eleventh musical melodrama that we’ve produced and directed.  Every year we experience a post-melodrama let-down that I never plan for, but I should. For about a week after the play is over, we all trudge about in a fog of exhaustion and sadness that it is all over.  We still have much to do:  it takes a few days to put away all the costumes, props, make-up, set pieces, and so on, and to write thank-you notes and return things that we have borrowed–but we are almost too tired to do it all.  After this week of exhaustion, we get a little energy back, and by then we’ve (read: I’ve) realized how many tasks and responsibilities we’ve neglected during the final weeks of busyness before the show.

Here is my adorable cast from Deadwood Dick, tired from dress rehearsal but still grinning.

Here is my adorable cast from Deadwood Dick, tired from dress rehearsal but still grinning.

At this point, we put our collective shoulders to the proverbial plough (if you’ll pardon the clichés) and try to begin the process of catching up on chores around the house: paying bills, baking bread, planting seeds, writing blog posts, making up school work (anybody remember Latin?) and so forth.  It’s a difficult week or two, with so much to do and so little energy with which to do it! It’s the same sad state of affairs every year, and yet it slaps me silly with surprise every year.

The villainess, played by Olivia Nabb, tries to ignore the yokels at a nearby table.

The villainess, played by Olivia Nabb, tries to ignore the yokels at a nearby table.

One might ask if all the hassle is worth it–and the answer is . . . is . . . (I’m thinking, I’m thinking) . . . yes!!  Yes, yes, yes! It’s worth it to do hard things, Gentle Reader!  Things that you may believe that you can’t possibly do . . . you go ahead and give it a try and you pray about it and you realize that you are stronger and more creative and have more stamina and more imagination and more everything than you really believed that you had!  It is a thrilling realization!

The Chinese cook urges the young ladies to defend themselves:  "Bite fingles! Bite fingles!"

The Chinese cook urges the young ladies to defend themselves: “Bite fingles! Bite fingles!”

Why is it worth all the time and the sweat and the tears and the headaches and the trouble, one may ask?  Well, I’ll tell you, Gentle Reader, in a nutshell, the answer is this: there’s nothing like the thrill of taking the raw materials of a theatre production–the pile of new scripts, a couple dozen excited teenagers, a piano and a pile of music, some costumes and props and some pink Styrofoam flats and some used lumber and a few cans of second-hand paint–and to combine them all in such a way that gives such pleasure and entertainment to so many.  I’m a nerd where theatre is concerned, and to me there’s just nothing like the experience of live theatre. I love it.

Wild Bill assures Rose that Pong will not die, though he will hang disguised as Ned . .

Wild Bill assures Rose that Pong will not die, though he will hang disguised as Ned . .

I could go on and on, but I’ll save that for the book.  If you’d like to know more about running your own theatre group (home school, or otherwise) you can read my article here.  Hubby Bryan and I are right now–as we speak, Gentle Readers–working on a book that will go into much more detail on how we started our group (and how you can start your own, if you’re so inclined!) and everything we’ve learned along the way. And believe you me, we’ve learned a whole stinkin’ lot. There’ll be lots of pictures and lots of stories. Hopefully we’ll finish it before next year’s play and it will be available right here at vomitingchicken.com!

The lovely blind heroine Lily contemplates how wonderful it were be if she were to regain her sight . . .

The lovely blind heroine Lily contemplates how wonderful it were be if she were to regain her sight . . .

Until then, I hope you enjoyed these photos of our play!

 

 

23 thoughts on ““Deadwood Dick, or The Game of Gold”

  1. Regina Walker

    Wow! This is so amazing and I love all of the things that are being taught and learned in putting on this play. I love that as homeschoolers we get to engage kids in such a way that helps them grow while having so much fun. I hope the “post-play” haze wears off quickly and I pray that your inspiration and energy will be renewed!

    1. dramamamafive Post author

      Thank you, Regina. Every day it gets a little better . . . and this springtime weather coming in will do much to heal the post-play blues!

  2. Francene Stanley

    You look as if you all had a lot of fun in the play. Of course it was worth it. However, I don’t know where you get your energy with everything you do as well as writing a blog. Thanks for sharing the photos.

  3. Suerae Stein

    It looks like an amazing production! The set and costumes and people look incredible! I have little experience with theater, but I do know that everyone gets very close because of all the time spent together, and that alone would be a tough adjustment once it’s over. Not to see those same people as often would be difficult. I love all your photos! Soon it will be spring and your gardening will get you out of the blues.

    1. dramamamafive Post author

      Thanks, Suerae, today the weather is supposed to perk up a great deal and it looks like we could have spring weather by the end of the week! I’m ready for it!

  4. Alana (@RamblinGarden)

    I did enjoy your pictures! My adult son’s interest was not in the theatre (he was a “science kid” through and through) so I never got exposed to this. It’s a lot of work but I can see how it can teach so, so much.

  5. Amalia

    Great post and pictures as always, Mummy! Everyone is right, the cast and set, and costumes, and over-all production looks fabulous! 😉

  6. Toni Nelson

    Love all the photos! Did you take video of play? I hope so. You can use that to help promote your book! If you need any help or suggestions let me know:) As award winning videographers I created videos two for the launch of my upcoming book.

    1. dramamamafive Post author

      Toni,
      One of the members of our cast this year is a professional film=maker, so he filmed our show and will make a DVD of it for us. Using it with the book is an amazing idea. Thank you for that! Good luck with the launching of your new book!

  7. Nanette Levin

    I could certainly see how finishing a production could be a let down. In fact, it always puzzled me as a youth to see rehearsals go on for months on a play that only had three or so showings. Seems someday someone ought to figure out a way to capture an audience for more than a weekend or two. Still, the thrill of seeing all that work being well received is probably beyond words. What fun for you!

    1. dramamamafive Post author

      Nanette,
      Every year my cast and crew beg me to do more than one weekend of shows, but we live in a small town and I’m happy with our two BIG audiences and feel that’s preferable to four small audiences. Thanks for your kind words!

  8. The Great Gordino

    yes, I did enjoy the picturres – very much.
    I know what you mean about the post show let down, but that’s the price you pay for the surge of feelgood you get, and it’s a price worth paying.

    11 years is impressive, what would you ever do if you missed a year!!
    I do enjoy reading your posts, although I swear they are getting even longer, how do you find the time to write that much!!
    Cheers,
    Gordon

    1. dramamamafive Post author

      It’s nice to have you back, GreatG, I’d been wondering about you! I promise you that all my posts aren’t that long! I just get on a roll and I don’t know when to quit! It’ll be good to read your posts again!

  9. Pingback: I Didn’t Get to be in Drama! | Perceptions by One

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