There’s this great phrase that our Artistic Director, Kelie Miley, uses in rehearsals. And in greenroom circles. And sometimes in staff meetings. For decades I have listened to this phrase, and for decades it has bolstered my courage. Now, as a teacher, I repeat it to my students on the regular. The phrase is simply:
DARE TO BE BAD
That’s it. In all that we do, in all that we say, I think that’s just about the most important bit of wisdom we have to offer. Dare to be bad. So much of theatre is stepping outside of your comfort zone, but if we’re going to reach those heartstrings or hear those belly laughs or hit those high C’s, we all have to do something a little bit daring.
Every moment of live theatre has a 50% chance of being successful. The joke will land, or it won’t. The magic trick will fire, or it won’t. Toto will climb into Dorothy’s basket, or he’ll pee on the side of it. You never know. Every moment is happening live, and there are no second takes.
So why am I telling you this? Because this is the time of year that we need the most daring support from adults. When autumn rears it’s ugly back-to-school head, we charge in with our Masquerade Gala & Auction, and auditions for our Main Stage Musical. Both events require adults to make the magic happen, and both events make grown ups shrug and say “gee, I just don’t know if I can.”
To that shrug, I say DARE TO BE BAD. You might sing off-key at your audition, but you also might be really great and have the opportunity to perform alongside your kids. You might share in a fun, intimate experience like nothing else imaginable. You might get out-bid on this year’s Low Country Boil, but you also might get invited to attend the next one, where theatre moms and dads all shell shrimp while lip-syncing to Hamilton, and the kids cover their faces in embarrassment. (Is it just me, or does that sound like the best party EVER?)
Yes, our name is Savannah Children’s Theatre, and the children are our everything. We can be a place where you drop off your kids for a few hours after school, and we can be a sends them home happy and tired. We would rather be a family meeting place; a place where kids can learn and grown their talents while seeing their parents thriving in a new, creative light. Dads can wield hot glue guns and learn a soft-shoe dance right alongside their sons, and moms can paint scenery and sing harmonies with their daughters. Grandparents can volunteer at the concession stand, and your crazy aunt (you know you have one) can help solicit donations. You can lend us your time and talents, and you can share your financial resources with a local non-profit that is dedicated to building up and equipping the youth in this very community.
We are here to serve the children. But if we are going to serve them well, we are going to need some stalwart goofball adults to step up, and dare to be the leading man, or the second banana, or the committee chair. Dare to be involved in your kids’ extracurricular activities. Dare to know their friends and their teachers. Dare to know their talents. Dare to show them yours.
So…where to begin? How about auditions tonight at 7pm? How about our biggest fundraiser of the year, The Masquerade Gala & Auction? How about an email that says “how can I help?” Go ahead. I dare ya. 🙂