A New Era Dawns...
Miles to go...
Just take a look at the picture. A few weeks before 19th August, I told my cast about Robert Frost's poem.
Its last verse from Stopping By Woods on a Snowy Evening goes something like this:
The woods are lovely, dark, and deep,
But I have promises to keep,
And miles to go before I sleep,
And miles to go before I sleep.
Now that the Ides of March is over, sleep isn't particularly on the most wanted list anymore. I was telling some cast members that the end of the Ides is the beginning of something new for most if not all of us.
What lies beyond that hill or hump cannot be seen but talk of auditions and other offers are signs that the Ides of March has opened doors and hopefully, will continue to do so.
If anyone ever says that dreams don't come true, tell them they're wrong. Call me a dreamer, call me ambitious but I have absolute faith in my dreams. And dammit, we're all living proof that dreams do come true after all.
In all honesty, I never thought 19th August would come. Somehow, it seemed a far cry away. At times, I felt that it all wasn't really happening and that I had become Rip Van Winkle.
But the truth is, it did happen. A part of me was jumping in joy that it was nearing, most parts of me were in turmoil.
As the days drew nearer, the routine that replaced my initial one for the last 8 months would culminate. The people I've grown to love and see many times in a week would now be seen lesser but never loved less.
As the playwright and director of the musical, I am over the moon at seeing my baby being born. Having had to battle my demons in the form of scepticism and emotional stress, I've come out feeling more inspired than ever.
However, my feelings for my personal achievement is by far overshadowed my utmost pride in my cast and crew. Yes, everyone of them regardless the ups and downs we've encountered.
I've seen them improve tremendously from when they first came in. I've seen them bond, let it be a full 4 months of 3 weeks worth of participation.
Ultimately, for most, we've all become family.
On 19th August, I was so overwhelmed I broke down many times.
Moments before the show, during the show, interval and at the end.
Never in my life had I imagined that I'll have the people I've grown to love over the last 19 years to be there in the audience supporting this musical.
I have a long list of people to thank and I can't stop saying thank you to each one of you.
I could've remained backstage to prepare for my scenes but I stood at the wings throughout. And I was beaming, I was doing mini dances and celebrations as I saw my vision unfold in all its splendour.
And as I stood there, I was in awe. In awe of the commitment my cast and crew members have put in. I cried and wiped my tears silently at the progress all of them have made.
I cried because here I was living a dream and I had these wonderful people sharing it with me and to my cast and crew, this baby is as much mine as it yours.
Somehow, the long night ended. The smoke cleared and the dust settled, somehow.
Days have passed and the "reviews" have been coming in from different sources and with every production, of course there are good ones and there are the bad ones.
But, I'm putting all that aside because as I type this, I see myself looking back at 19th August.
I see myself standing with the rest of the audience watching my cast and crew on stage at the end of the night and feeling that these people truly deserved it; an ovation, a standing one.