On Saturday, we did two shows. The first one was the matinee, which was supposed to be family-friendly with all curse words and adult jokes cut out. The second one was the closing performance where we got to go back to saying fuck (yay?). And they were both sold out as well! The theater seats about 50, so all four sold-out shows would be around 200 people that had seen the show. Not too shabby at all.
Before the matinee, we went over our lines to make sure we didn’t say anything that we shouldn’t say in front of kids. For example, I was debating whether to replace the “shit” in “your dress looks like shit” with crap, poop, doodie, or booger. Eventually I went with doodie. When we were done, I was relieved: “Yay! We didn’t slip!” And if you’ve been in our class, you would know that it was a challenge given how many inappropriate things we’ve said in class.
What really surprised us was that none of the kids were kicking, screaming, or crying. I mean, in all these movies and shows I’ve been to, if there were a certain number of kids, at least one of them would start crying and the parent would have to get the kid outside somewhat embarrassed. Well, none of that in this show. And once again I realized: Wow, puppet shows are magical.
After the show we brought out puppets to talk to the kids. The kids really loved the puppets. I can definitely relate. My family came to see the show too (though they are all adults). Yay!
At night, we got back to our regular uncensored show, yay! It was the last show, so for sure there was the “Yeah! Let’s go out with a bang!” attitude in everyone. I don’t usually use curse words very much when I talk, but somehow found it liberating to be able to say fuck again. However, when we got on stage, we realized that there was a 10-year-old in the first row. Well, we did already say that the show would be adult-themed so I thought “fuck it” and went on to say the aforementioned “shit” without censorship. It was not until after the show that I realized that I had the honor of being the first person to curse in every performance. Even if anyone had any reservations about cursing (I doubt it), it was basically green light the rest of the way after I let that one out. And we proceeded to say shit and fuck numerous times throughout the show. Hooray!
And finally, we did The Hustle without a hiccup! I did have another hiccup though when I was singing “She’s A Lady”. I wasn’t sure how it happened. At one point, either the music skipped, or it was turned much lower than the microphone, so I wasn’t hearing the music well. Or maybe I just got too excited? I was singing ahead of the music, which never happened in any rehearsals or previous performances. But at some point I caught myself doing that and found my place in the music again and finished it correctly the rest of the way. I hope the audience was distracted enough with the subsequent singing, dancing, and bright colors to remember that.
And really, it was the last night and everyone just wanted to put on their best performance and this led to many amazing performances. There was a camera recording the show, so we were watching the performances backstage via the video feed, and man, many of these performances were simply amazing. Many high-fives backstage after each number.
We closed out the show with an opera. Well, it was really us singing (painfully obvious) fake Italian to a background track. The four of us theatre puppetry students played the main characters, while the TV puppetry students joined in as the chorus. Every student was on stage at the same time. There was just something beautiful about that. Now, though there were character descriptions and a general plot line, everything else was improvised. We weren’t singing the same words every night. We weren’t singing the same notes every night. Every night it went slightly different. So we were all very happy afterwards with that crescendo we did. Without rehearsing and agreeing beforehand, Libby, Keith, and I all reached for that same high note towards the end, and wow, that felt just great.
And at the end of the last scene of the last show, my prop broke. What great timing! Now that’s a sign telling me that, yes, that’s a wrap. I had a wonderful time performing with this amazing group of people. More on that later.