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