It started out so uncertain. I was thrown into the middle of it all…
One day, my friend and colleague Tobie Pillstrom sent out a request on Facebook for ensemble castmembers for To Kill a Mockingbird. I hadn’t done any theatre in a while, but I thought, Sure I can play a racist farmer, or whatever else they need for that play. So I showed up, and I volunteered to be part of it. Somehow, they needed to recast Boo Radley and his brother Nathan. They’d had actors drop out. So they asked me if I would do it. I said yes.
I didn’t know anybody else in the show, except for Tobie’s son and a student of mine. It felt like a fairly “gelled” group I was being thrown into- several of them knew each other from previous productions. And then I found out there would be two “matinee” days of morning shows during the week. I was supposed to take off work two days for my “racist farmer” gig? To be some sort of alien castmember in somebody else’s show? I wasn’t really sure about sticking around. But I resisted the urge to run. I said yes.
In hindsight, what a great decision it has been to go ahead and hang out with these folks all those nights. It stopped being somebody else’s show. It’s now mine, too. I’ve been shown so much kindness and so much friendship that it makes it seem kind of strange to think I ever had doubts. The people I’ve had the fortune to meet have enriched my life, and I can’t wait for Robbie to have time in her schedule to get involved in theatre again sometime too.
Now we’ve arrived at the final weekend. Two more shows, and then Mockingbird will be struck.
I don’t know what I’ll miss the most. There are so many good folks I’ve been able to enjoy seeing almost every day for the last three weeks. All I can say is, I will look forward to the next time.
If you’re ever thrown into an unexpected situation like I was, where you don’t know how exactly to act or who is who, just remember: life is like that. You just have to take it as it comes, and remember: always say yes.
You’ll be glad you did.