10 Things Theatre Kids Know Far Too Well
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10 Things Theatre Kids Know Far Too Well

"I can't talk today. I'm on vocal rest."

10 Things Theatre Kids Know Far Too Well

It was the best of times, it was the worst of times, and then you were cast in a show. Theatre has always been one of those things that takes up all of your time, and you get little to know recognition for all of your hard work. You memorize lines, miss copious amounts of sleep, eat at really weird times of the day and try to also balance having a social life. If you've ever been a part of a theatre show, I bet this list describes your life perfectly:

1. "Where the hell is (insert cast member's name here)?!"

Sometimes, it is almost impossible to have a rehearsal with the entire cast present at the same time. Susie has soccer practice, John has a fraternity event, and Sheila has a doctor's appointment at 3:15—so she can only come for 40 minutes. It can be really annoying waiting around for Jordan to show up to rehearsal; he comes in 30 minutes late without a care in the world. Then 10 people know what they're doing, five people have only seen the first act of the show, and three aren't really sure what the plot of the show even is. Four days until the show opens and you still have yet to have a full rehearsal. No rush though.

2. That feeling when you have to go out and get all your own costumes.

The budget is small, and so is your bank account, but you still have to find costumes on your own. Purchasing costumes can be a real hassle. You check cheap department stores, Salvation Army, Goodwill, your sister's closet, the dress up bin in your basement, Savers, the wrack in the back of the theater that never has the costume you're looking for when you need it (but someone else finds it for themselves five minutes later) and even your own wardrobe. Where are you supposed to find a summer dress from the post-recession era that shows you still have some money but also isn't a dark color because you're supposed to be having fun, and dark colors don't match the color scheme of the set? "Join theater," they said. "It will be fun," they said.

3. "When do I enter?"

This is your big moment. The instant when the audience sees you walk onto the stage. At this point, many things are running through your head: Do I enter before the line or after? Or should I just kind of mosey on in super casually during the line? Am I entering with Sarah or Jim? Sarah and Jim? That seems a little bit crowded, but I'll make it work. OK, I'm sorry, when do I enter again?

4. When someone in the cast starts complaining about their part.

Everyone can't be the lead. And the ensemble is usually in almost every scene anyway. Just because you don't have lines doesn't mean you're not important. Huge musical numbers would be nothing without a large ensemble. Could you imagine performing "You Can't Stop the Beat" from "Hairspray" without at least 15 people? It just cannot be done. Be glad that you got a part and have a good time, Brenda, OK!

5. "LINE?!"

Getting off book can be super tedious and mildly frustrating in the beginning. There is nothing worse than spending all those hours practicing, then when it's time to say your line in rehearsal, you totally choke. It sucks even more when that is your only line in the whole show, and you can't even get that right. Watching other people mess up on their lines is hard to watch, too. Sure, ad-libbing is a good skill to have, but at some point, you're going to have to actually learn your actual lines. I don't think they used the words "dude" and "bro" in the 1930s.

6. That feeling of utter annoyance when you walk see someone into rehearsal 10 minutes late with food in their hands.

Don't you just hate when you busted your ass to get to rehearsal on time and some jerk just strolls on in late with Starbucks and a sandwich? Like yeah, I'm hungry too, pal, but I got my ass here on time just like everyone else. What makes you so god damn special that you can hold us back with your tardiness and appetite. Now get on stage and give me a bite of your croissant.

7. "Crap, I missed my entrance."

Dang it! Missing an entrance is a lot like sleeping through a job interview. Not only have you just fudged up the big moment of the audience watching you walk on stage, but you can really mess up a scene. Sometimes entrances are integral to what is happening in that moment, and if you don't get there on time, you've officially ruined the show. The momentum can be thrown off, and the audience is made fully aware that something is not right here. Then when your director stops the scene and makes you start all over again, you feel like everyone secretly hates you because you can't get your sh*t together.

8. "It'll be different once an audience gets here."

This is usually the excuse someone uses when they're trying to cover up for the fact that they're not giving the scene their all. Yes, once the audience shows up, everything is different. Suddenly you're funnier, you remember all of the steps you've been struggling with and your facial expressions are on point. But when you're in rehearsal, you have to act as if the audience has been there the whole time! The audience showing up isn't some sort of magic that makes you good at what you do. It takes practice to get you to that level and the audience showing up to really drive it home.

9. No matter how thin your costume is, you will still sweat like a pig.

It's even worse when you have to wear winter clothes or period costumes from when they were completely covered up. It's as if the each of the lights contain the heat of 1,000 suns, and every time you step onto the stage, they seek you out and claim you as their next victim. By the time the show is over, you're a hot mess, your costume is gross, and everyone in the audience could definitely see your pit stains all through your soliloquy in scene seven.

10. "I can't go out tonight. I have rehearsal."

The phrase us theater kids know far too well. There's things you're going to miss, events you can't attend and parties you'll show up hella late to. There will be a bunch of stuff that you didn't get to be a part of because you had rehearsal from 4 p.m. to 10 p.m., and you're way too exhausted to go out afterward. But even though you feel left out and even though you bust your ass day after day in rehearsal and it feels like that scene still isn't good enough, it's all worth it in the end. Once you get out on that stage and feel the light beam on you and the audience clap for you, all those missed birthday parties are irrelevant, and you wouldn't want to spend all that time you did in rehearsal anywhere else.

Theater is really hard. It takes major commitment, and sometimes during a show you find yourself saying, "This is it. This is the last show I'm gonna be in. After this, I'm throwing in the towel." Then a few weeks later, you're checking your email to see which part you got in the spring musical, and the cycle starts all over again. That's show biz!

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This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.
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