There is something magical about Show Day. Paid or recreational actors, students who are typical or have developmental disabilities, there is something different in the air. Excitement. Pride. Anticipation. Students are usually a combination of nervous and excited. Parents are usually twice as nervous as their children. And us directors? Well, even with our experience we have our fingers crossed just as much as the parents. But it always turns out. Always.
There is something about knowing an audience is “out there” in expectation. Whether it be five or five hundred people there is a kind pressure not present before. My instructors and I have seen it over and over and over: a good show will become great, a quiet line will be stated with bold confidence. There is something magical about Show Day.
Our most recent Showcase at the Friendship Circle was no exception. Two particular moments stand out: A young man in the four weeks of practice was hesitant to say his line. Practice after practice he would prefer a teacher say his line rather than him. Come Show Day, with the brilliant supporting staff of Friendship Circle, when his line arrives he approaches the microphone with confidence and delivers his line to tearful applause. See, when performing for friends and family (about 50 were present that day) they know what effort was put into the making of the Show. So when Princess #4 said loud and proud, “I will wear my pink gown,” with a smile on her face, the audience did not care what her official “diagnosis” was. They did not give a second thought to what her IEP may entail. What they gave her, was a standing ovation.
There is something magical about Show Day.