Ten years ago around this time, I wrote a piece in my then-new LiveJournal called A Tragedian's Tale.
It's still there today, and I wrote it to share my experience in the newly born Theatre@First's inaugural production of Rosencrantz & Guildenstern Are Dead
in 2004. People who know me know the story of how I came to Theatre@First and the immediate positive impact the group had on me, and it's all there for readers who don't. On closing night of that little church basement run, I cried in the green room because there was no next show planned at the time and my heart was breaking at the thought of this group drifting apart. There was so, so much that I didn't know was ahead.
a next show, and a next one, and a next one and....we simply never stopped. The little church basement rag-tag team became a busy non-profit, producing shows year-round in venues all over Somerville. We are friends and neighbors making theatre for and with our friends and neighbors. We spawned a sister organization called the Post-Meridian Radio Players that takes theatre in a different direction. Our love of theatre craft and our desire to serve our community has kept us together and kept us growing for ten years now. And counting.
I would get all squishy if I tried in ernest to explain how many ways my life has changed as a result of my being a part of Theatre@First. My life is literally on a different trajectory than it would have been if Theatre@First hadn't happened. It would be an exhaustive list, but one that bears particular mention is that during our 2nd season, I met surrealestate
in the cast of Murder In The Cathedral
, through whom I met my life partner and forever-love, beowabbit
. He has since joined the group and become a Firstie in his own right. For the rest of my life I will be so very grateful for that, and many other things.
A whole new generation of children has been born to group members, and the oldest has already made her stage debut with us. I've lost count of how many marriages and life-unions have come about from people meeting in casts or crews. We've learned together and created together. I've worked with lots of other theatre companies and groups and I go to their shows all the time, but Theatre@First is the only group I've ever regularly referred to as "my theatre group." No, I don't own it, but it is mine. It's my theatre home and family.
So here we are, ten years later and just about to open our anniversary production of Rosencrantz & Guildenstern Are Dead
. It's very different than the first production, and the years or work show, I believe. I now have a bunch of physical limitations that I didn't have ten years ago, and they do limit how much and what kind of acting I can do, but I'm in this production, and I would have joined the crew if I hadn't been cast. I wouldn't have missed this for the world.
This morning I got teary-eyed, but they were happy tears as I watched the new video on the Indigogo page: Theatre at First: The Next Ten Years!
. It's a retrospective of our first ten years work, and I was proud to see some of my own work in there.
I'm a terrible fundraiser because I hate asking people for money, but I will invite you to click through and watch the video if you'd like to see bits of what my past decade with the group has been like, and you can help if you like. If you're local, the door is always wide open for you to join in, onstage or off. Come make theatre with us....