I might have called all of you this afternoon if I did!
A local theatre company is starting a ClassicsLive touring program. Today, they did a performance of their three touring shows (Midsummer Night's Dream, Antigone, and Beowulf) for local teachers. We're already scheduled to take all our Sophomores to their non-touring production of Julius Caesar next month, so I wanted to see what the new program was about.
For starters, the shows are good. Their Beowulf used shadow puppets and choral speaking--so moving! I can really see it playing beautifully in a small space! They are willing to negotiate their already reasonable performance prices, so on some level, we're in for the tour. I'll find a grant. It will happen.
In the post performance chat, they start talking about the workshops they do as part of the package. For Beowulf, they let the kids play with shadow puppets, for Antigone, it's mask work. As the touring director talked about the Midsummer workshops, things begin to sound familiar. "We let the kids interact physically to the text. We might do some reading of the text around a circle and talk about what emotions come up for the words. We talk about the sonic meaning of these words..."
My head is spinning! Are you my cousin, lady?
During the obligatory post show snack time, this woman introduces herself. She remembers my name from email correspondence, is excited that we're bringing so many kids to JC, blah blah...
"Listen," I say, "I like the approach you're taking with your workshops. I spent a month this summer with Shakespeare and Company and..."
"Oh. My. Gosh!!" She exclaims, "Tina Packer came to the University of Oklahoma and did a workshop when I got my MFA!"
"No way!" I pipe in, "get some wine in me, wrap my head up in a bedsheet, and you can hardly tell us apart!"
No, I didn't say that. I thought about it. Maybe I wish I did. I probably said something about how lifechanging the whole study was for me and that I really was excited to see them working here in my hometown. I gave her my card and told her we would be in touch to use her but that if I could play any part in what they are doing in the schools, I would be thrilled to.
Two lesson here, friends:
- Potential friends and great experiences are everywhere in this small world.
- If Tina can make it out here, what makes you think you can't?
I am off to put more of you in my speed dial. If something like this happens again, I have to catch one of you somehow!!