Last night Noises Off, the play I was in, closed. This afternoon I helped strike the set. I’m finding myself struggling through some mixed emotions right now.
The end of a play is almost always a bitter-sweet experience. There’s a lot of time, hard work, effort, and often money that each person gives to a production. It’s a commitment. Practices don’t always end when they should and sometimes after a long day of work rehearsing for a play is the last thing you want to do. Part of the payoff comes from the performances. I have yet to find something in my life that fills me with the joy, exultation, and excitement that performing does. As much as I enjoy it, it is nice to have some free time in the evenings again.
Yet, even now as I sit and write this, I miss the show. I miss the show because of the people with whom I worked, played, and performed with for the past two months. Old friendships were strengthened and new ones were formed. A small community was built. Now, the farewells have been made, the fellowship has been broken, and the community has been disbanded. Many of us will probably work together again. Some of us might not, but even if we were to all come together again, it would not be the same.
This show was really special to me. I’ve wanted to perform in Noises Off for a long time. I don’t remember when I first heard about the show. I made decisions in my life that would keep me in the area just so I would be close enough to do the show. For example, I really didn’t apply to too many schools that were outside of a 150 mile radius of the town where the play was going to be performed. Some people called me crazy. I couldn’t explain it to them. I just knew it was something I wanted to do and something I was supposed to do. For the past two months, the play has been a lifeline for me and it was actually something I looked forward to doing each night. Now, it is finished. The last set pieces have been taken away and the stage floor is swept and mopped.
There’s a line in the play that goes, “This is such a lovely company to work with.” It truly is. It truly is.