Without a full tech on Sunday things are still "coming together" as we begin our oddly interrupted by a national holiday two week long hell week. Miracle Worker opens at Broadway West on the eighth, ready or not. The stakes are rising quickly as all the bits of business, pieces of the set, spike marks, entrances, cues, costumes, lines, reactions, and props all become real tangible things that we must wield with an infant's tentative grasp to tell our story while our amazed audience, hopefully, feels the emotions we command.
We are storytellers, telling our story as if it was our life to behold. We all hope that in this very brief space between when we finally learn the lines and when the audience arrives, that a miracle happens. It has happened almost every time I have participated, many times over. It is always hard, and the miracle is not through divine intervention, but through the selfless gift of our hopefully adequate talent.
In this time, people get emotional. The emotions are all over the place, generally further than usual from the usual center. That makes it an unusual time. But when the time is done, the miracle does happen, and all our emotions are put back in their place. The audience comes in, the lights go down, and the story unfolds before them. Then, as if on cue, they feel the emotions they came to feel, and we feel them too.
Their lives are in some small, maybe very small, way are touched by our work, by the story we set out many months ago to tell. Sometimes they come away touched, with tears in their eyes as they thank us with their applause, as they clasp both our hands in theirs to say thank you.
And that is why we do it.