I have the distinct pleasure tonight of going to see a show that my friends are in, and it’s making me very happy. There are few things I love as much as that moment of anticipation, sitting in a comfy theatre* seat, the lights dimming, the music starting, just knowing that people are going to come out and dance and sing and act for me!
I come from theatre people. My parents met in a play. A play called The Marriage. No joke. I myself am a lapsed theatre person, finding that I sadly don’t sing and dance and put on makeup and scour the city for props anymore, the way I once did. But that doesn’t mean I can’t show up and clap! So show up and clap I will, because one of the things I love about living in the city is that there is theatre EVERYWHERE.
A short story: it was last January. I was in full-gear wedding preparation mode and about to pull out every last one of my hairs. My wonderful then-fiance bought us tickets to A Christmas Carol at Ford’s Theatre. We showed up, we sat down, and we began to savor our afternoon of mature fun. Look at us, theatre-goers! The lights dimmed a bit, and then, all of a sudden, there were Dickensian-clothed actors in the audience greeting us. Surprise! I heard a whisper in my ear, “Oh, no, this is for children!” We chuckled at ourselves for thinking we were so grown up, waved at the nice lady saying hello to the eight-year-old sitting in front of us, and for the first time in weeks, didn’t feel stressed at all. The production was spot-on, and we left feeling lighter, happier and more charitable. Ah, the power of plays.
One of the sad things about being a grad student is not having the disposable income to take advantage of it. (someday, there will be paychecks again!) So while these shows may be worthwhile, it’s unlikely I’ll get to them unless I really make the effort. It’s not the worst thing in the world to have to work for something you love doing though. And it does make me savor the productions I get to all the more. But I definitely won’t forget that for many, theatre productions are just completely out of reach. So my humble suggestion is thus this: buy a theatre ticket AND make a donation to these folks (where, disclosure, a friend of mine works. this is how I know they do great things). More arts for you, more arts for all!
Live in DC? Here are just a few of the great things going on.
A Bright New Boise (it’s the Woolly Mammoth, so it’s guaranteed to be weird and great. And the description of the show starts with “prepare yourself”)
Foggerty’s Fairy (disclosure: I know some of the people involved in this one. further disclosure: they are awesome)
The Great Gatsby (technically, this is ballet)
Shear Madness (I’ve heard they’re funny, but have never seen them. Scandal!)
The Book Club Play (sounds like suburbia intrigue. Intriguing)
After the Quake (this could be sad. and could be great)
Wilder Sins (this theatre is at my church. so convienient)
Now, let’s not just talk, let’s do. Who wants to come to a show with me?
*Yes, that’s theatre with an “re.” Because that’s what mama told me when I was little and that’s what I’m sticking with.