Sunday, November 30, 2008

Another Opening, Another Show

West Side closed last night. It flew by so fast. I really wish we had been able to perform for 2 weekends; shows always seem to reach their peak the last 2 performances, and it always sucks to have to close them right when they're just getting good. And it's not even just the performances that get better; socially, you always get closer to your castmates as the show goes into production, simply because you spend every waking minute together for that last week before opening. I'm so grateful for the amazing friends I've made just in the last few weeks-you guys rock.

The obligatory drunk-and-debauchery cast party was last night; I myself wasn't the guzzling alchoholic that I had intended to be as someone managed to snake half my bottle of wine from under my nose (a maneuver which I begrudgingly admit was very impressive). However, that was probably a good thing. No one ever makes good decisions when they've had that much to drink. I was buzzed, yet sober enough to still have a great time. Perfect place to be. I wish that party could have gone on forever, except for the part where my feet felt like they were about to fall off.

On a completely different note, I went crazy and bought a ton of Christmas decorations for my room yesterday. I don't care that my room is pretty much the size of a gym locker; it will look like it threw up Christmas. Awesome.

Oh! Life plan! So I'm thinking-move back to the US when I've finished my MA (though I REALLY love London), teach community college, and work as a choreographer in my spare time. Thoughts?

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Obligatory Thanksgiving Entry

I didn't get to celebrate Thanksgiving this year. Not only am I in Britain, where they're silly and don't have Thanksgiving, but tonight was opening night of West Side Story, so eating loads of turkey was pretty much out of the question. But I've decided, at 11:59 pm right before I run out of time, to celebrate Thanksgiving the only way I can this year-by making the stereotypically sappy list of the things I'm thankful for, and hoping that by reading this all my friends and loved ones will know how grateful I am for them. So, without further ado, here goes:

I'm thankful for:
-One of the best opening nights I've ever had-there were virtually no mishaps and the house was nearly sold out, which is awesome considering the show was in a huge theatre.
-Kendall for coming to see the show even though she only found out about it today.
-All the people in my course, who make class so much more interesting and fun. I would be lost without you guys.
-Arianne, Lucy, Manny C., Monica, Sam, Nick and Manny, who all still regularly make an effort to keep in touch with me even though I'm light-years away from Miami. (Also, side-note: Manny A.F., I miss you more than words can say. I know this hasn't been the greatest year for you, and the fact that I can't be with you to help make it better breaks my heart.)
-Caddy and Kat for both going out of their way today to wish me a happy Thanksgiving-one wouldn't expect English people to remember the date and remember how meaningful it is to us Yankee types, and they both did. Thanks, guys. It seems like a really small thing, but it meant a lot to me. :)
-Fiona and Michaela for loving me enough to throw caution to the wind and embarass me in front of someone I don't know that well by field-tackling me in the street. You girls rock.
-Rachel for bringing me tea when I'm stressed.
-Ashley, Stacey, and Judith for always making dinner an interesting event.
-Betsy for just being you. :)
-Liam for your crazy random text messages
-Jake for your random comments on my blog; good to know someone reads this thing. As long as there's at least one, I will continue to update it.
-Seb for wanting to work with me next semester; I've discovered that it's reasonably difficult for me to live without working on a show, and I'm really excited to be part of what looks to be a really awesome production team, though my capacity is yet undefined. At this point, it doesn't even matter what I do; I'm just so psyched to work with you guys.
-Mimi for always going out of her way to be kind during rehearsals.
-Jeff for always walking me home.
-Adnan for his chivalry tonight. Much appreciated. Three cheers for new friends.
-My mom for being amazing. She's the most courageous and selfless woman I know, and I love her more than words can say. Mom, I wish more than anything that I could be there for you right now when things may not be so great. I'm so sorry that I can't be.
-Leigh for being an awesome sister; Adam for being an awesome brother.
-Gracie for, well, my whole life, Brad for taking care of her, and Parker for being the best pseudo-nephew a girl could have. He'll be even better when he's actually born. :D (I'm too excited for words.)
-The whole camp crowd for helping me transition to life in London so easily; Aimee, Andy, Alistair, Rick, Gemma, and especially Rhys and Kendall-you guys have been a Godsend.
-Pete for commiserating with me while we suffer through Latin's sort of like the really nerdy three musketeers. Except there's two of us. So it's not really like that at all.
-Rosie, Rebecca, Vanessa, and Ginnie for befriending me from the very first West Side rehearsal, when I was still being the shy and intimidated version of me. (Glad that's out the window...)
-Rupert, Dom, Jane, Liz, Lizzy, Julia, and Dan for just being awesome. Elaboration unnecessary.
-Dr. Fitzgerald for fighting so hard to get me into grad school; I know for a fact I wouldn't be where I am today without him.
-Deb for hiring me to choreograph for her so many times; I think a good half of my experience came from her, and I can't express how much I appreciate that she's let me develop my skills so extensively.
-Phoebe, Vicki, Kat, and Liz S. for being so sweet to me recently; I'm sorry we've only just gotten to know each other, and I really hope that we can stay in touch when the show ends.
-Donna for making such an effort to be part of my life; if I had to go out and pick a step-mother, I would have picked you.

Well, if you've read this far, then a major kudos to you-you officially have no life. :) (Though the fact that I spent a good half hour writing this doesn't say too much about my social life either...). If there's anyone I've missed, I do very much apologize-I promise I'm thankful for you, too! It's just, you know, late. So good night world; tomorrow morning ushers in the official start of the Christmas season! Woot!

Monday, November 24, 2008

As If We Couldn't See This Coming...

So remember how in my last entry I mentioned how I was once again having an identity crisis? Yup. Yesterday I did what I swore I wouldn't do this year-I applied to choreograph the musical for next term. Whether I'll get the position or not is another issue entirely, but that's not the point. The one simplistic truth about my life that I've been trying to wrap my head around for the last 2 1/2 years finally clicked on like a lightbulb-whichever career I end up choosing, dance or academics, I will regret not having made the other one. And I'm not willing to settle for either one as just a hobby. So how does one manage that? If I don't pursue professional choreography, I'll be miserable. If I don't get my PhD and get the opportunity to teach college and write academic treatises, I'll be miserable. So what do you all think? Is life long enough for 2 simultaneous careers? It doesn't really appear to be, but maybe it is. I don't know whether I'm asking for advice or comfort or just for someone to tell me I'm not crazy. I guess the only thing to do for now is to raise our metaphoric glasses to the quarter-life crisis...

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Odds and Ends

Hello my faithful readers! Sorry it's been so long since I've posted...I wish I could say I've been so busy doing homework that I've haven't had a spare second to post, but that's blatantly not true. It is starting to back up on me, though...I should get on that whole falling-behind-in-my-classes thing. Meh.

On the subject of class, though, for those who have any fleeting interest, I got assigned a really cool paper topic for one of my course term papers (well, ok, I picked the topic myself, but still). I'm writing a paper on the use of allegory in the early Middle Ages as it applies to Biblical interpretation, specifically the medieval readings of the Song of Solomon (clearly not an allegorical text, though universally read as one) and Revelations (clearly an allegorical example of Jewish Apocolyptic literature, but read as a literal prophecy that would come true eventually). Should be awesome. I realize that most normal people would find that topic deathly boring and dull, but what can I say...I never claimed to be normal.

On another note, I am having a little bit of a personal crisis (again). All of you know that it took me forever to decide between going into choreography and being an academic, and it was a very difficult choice to make. I never regretted it for a second, until a couple of weeks ago. I was asked to help choreograph the partner work for the production of West Side Story that I'm doing right now, which is all good fun. The thing that sets my life into a turmoil of confusion once again is that the first tought I had when I started doing them was, "Thank God, I feel like me again!"


Saturday, November 1, 2008

Entering the World of Grown-Up Land...

You ever get hit by a sudden realization that, when you weren't looking, you became a grown-up? I had one of those today. I had just returned from a shopping trip down Tottenham Court Road, where I had ventured out and braved the stinging cold to buy a much-needed new winter coat (my old one is 10 years old and is of prime retirement age), some books, an Oyster card for the Tube (finally), some trousers, some sweaters, new gloves, etc. After I came home I went online and bought a new laptop, and then it hit me. I'm a grown-up.

It's not that anything I did today cannot be done by an adolescent. It was just a random thought that struck hear people say that these are the days of our lives, and it's true. In Western/American society, being young in the city is idealized to the extreme. According to prime-time TV, going out for drinks with your girlfriends, dating cute guys in their twenties, and gallavanting around London doing your shopping is the kind of life that everyone wants. It's not that I don't love my life; I very much do. But it's interesting when you get a sudden flash of what your life looks like to the disengaged observer. It's a weird mix of "Wow! I actually have that awesome life that people pine for!" and "This is it? THIS is what people lay awake at night wishing they had?" Again, I have no complaints. It's just striking to realize that what looks so good on TV is just pretty much normal. If the characters on Friends or Sex in the City or some other show about being urban and single were real people, I'm sure their lives wouldn't look nearly as cool to them as they do to everyone else. There are still bills to be paid, a crashing economy to worry about, homework to do, guys to fret over, tiffs with friends to regret, cold weather to curse, and so on.

I guess what I'm getting at is, it was surprising to suddenly realize that I've become all growed up to be a single girl in an awesome city who dates successful men who wear suits, gets to shop on Tottenham Court Road, goes out for drinks with her girlfriends once a week (or twice a week depending on how much our classes instigate a need for alchohol), and rides a subway every day. To me, it still feels like normal life. But to be honest?

It's pretty freakin' awesome.