Preparing to shoot a few segments of Big Jon in 5 for BEER2WHISKEY in our upstairs studio at Barley's Taproom in downtown Greenville. That's owner Josh Beebe preparing for his closeup.

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

The Starting Line Looks Good From Where I'm Standing

I recently watched a performance of "Joseph and the Technicolor Dreamcoat."

I'm not a huge fan of musicals. The silliness of people as they are going about their daily lives suddenly bursting into song and dance usually overwhelms any entertainment value I might reap from the performance.

I do like "Chicago" and have probably watched my DVD copy of "Moulin Rouge" 20 times or more. I also saw the road show of "Phantom of the Opera" row 8, center about 20 years ago in Ft. Lauderdale. Enjoyed that immensely.

Generally, though, I'm not a fan of musicals.

The production of "Joseph" I saw wasn't a road show. It didn't harbor professionals in its cast. It wasn't awash in pageantry.

It was a summer-camp production put on with kids ranging in age from 10 to 18. I saw it at the Delray Beach Playhouse on my last trip to Florida.

The cast, composed of kids who had to try out to qualify, rehearsed a mere three weeks. You would have never known it by the quality of their performance. I was blown away.

Why would I spend a precious three hours of a short, four-day Florida excursion in a dark theater rather than lying about someone's pool sucking down margaritas? I knew a couple of the kids in the cast.

It was a Sunday afternoon and the production's final performance. The theater was sold out.

I was sitting in a row with a half dozen friends. Among them were the parents of the kids I knew.

One of those kids was my adopted god daughter, Riley. I call her adopted not because she is, but because I am. Her real godfather has sort of dropped out of the picture. I am the official godfather of her younger sister, Sierra. So, I have sort of become Riley's as well.

Riley's friend Katie, whom I've known for several years and am good friends with her mom, was also in the show.

Why am I boring you with all this minutia? It is because I wasn't only struck by the high quality of this production, but by the enthusiasm and optimism of the kids in the cast.

As I approach a milestone birthday the end of this month, I am reflecting a bit on where I've been, where I am and what I might accomplish in the relatively short time I have left.

As I watched those kids so full of hope, dreams and possibilities, I couldn't help but revel in their futures full of promise.

I was moved.

I sure wouldn't want to be 10 or 12 years old again, but I was excited for these kids with their entire adult life spread out before them.

For a brief moment I shared in the pride of these girls' parents and got a glimpse of what it must be like to be a parent.

It was the perfect Florida afternoon.

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