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September 02, 2009

Blast It Out On The Porch

When I was a pre-teen I would stay at different people's houses for a couple weeks here and there. The host families all had lots of children. For some reason I thought I was the entertainment director at each house. I would write a play or a musical (not original music, just songs I already knew), get all the neighborhood kids involved setting up a sheet or two over a wire or rope strung across the porch for the curtain calls, set up folding chairs facing the "stage", and we would practice for how many days I would be there and on the last day we would charge admission and every kid would perform. We all took turns with the curtain and the lights (flashlights). We danced and sang and acted and brought the house down. All the parents in the neighborhood were there because their kids were part of the show. And the money earned was for treats for the kids the next day. I wasn't interested in the treats, but I was interested in giving the audience its money's worth. I pushed and cajoled and directed and re-wrote the scenes till it was polished enough for a dress rehearsal. Most of the musicals started with a bang with this song, everyone singing as loud as possible. We wanted to begin the show with a bang. Because I was staying at other people's houses, my own parents never were present for a performance. My mother was in the hospital on most of those occasions and my father did not come to see me while I stayed with the other families. But having all those other kids around to be with and accomplish something major like a "Broadway show" was one of the most fun memories of my young life. In the last semester of high school, I talked my way into an audition with the San Francisco Light Opera and I handed the musicians the music to this song. If I had the strength of this voice, perhaps I would have been accepted. It was a good experience and they did say for me to return in a year when my voice would be more mature. A post on Subdural Flow brought back the memory of the audition.

6 comments:

Elizabeth Bradley said...

My oldest daughter began putting on plays and singing songs for our family, (and many guests) around the age of 5. She's a singer, and a big ham. I'm sure your mother would have loved to have seen you orchestrating the productions and singing your heart out. How grand, that you had such confidence at such an early age to go for that audition.

Margie said...

You must have such wonderful memories of those days!
I can just imagine it must have been such a time of much fun!

I have always love singing but my voice...well that is another story...I just sing in the shower!

You must have a very good singing voice...do you stiil sing?

Margie:)

Badass Geek said...

Nice!

My sisters and I would often to the same thing, but with puppets. It was a blast.

Shadowthorne said...

I have as much the musical talent as a door knob.

But if it really matters, I am quite a good director in theatre performances. Erm...

otin said...

I couldn't carry a tune with a bucket!!!! LOL!

Big Dave T said...

Sounds like one of those Our Gang comedies. We didn't have any such talent in our neighborhood though one of the local boys eventually ended up a professional dancer. He even had a small role in Footloose.