Saturday, October 24, 2009

28 shows

I have 28 shows left of A Chorus Line.

Even as I type this, it's hard to really comprehend. Already, there are some misty eyes in the cast as I look around the stage during the show. If the last few times we've had closing performances for cast members are any indication, I will probably cry like a baby at this final closing.

But then again, this time I am more than ready to go home.

Maybe that will make a difference.


But on the other hand, as much as we all talk about what a small world this business really is, how we're gonna see each other in New York, attend each other's openings and all that, this is never going to happen again.

This group of special people. Traveling together. Working together. Laughing together. Commiserating over how ridiculous an eleven 0'clock matinee really is and come on, Equity, we don't even get overtime for this breakfast show? Crying together. Divulging to each other that things aren't good, that life has recently become the kind of story over which you shake your head, you wonder how the heroine is ever gonna pull through, and yet you all pull on your gold hats and sequined tights and you smile for the audience and you sell it anyway. Again and again, you sell it and find some reprieve as you get lost in a different story on stage every day.

There is a bond that forms slowly, gradually, and after a while you realize that you love these people. After all the early morning bus calls to get to the airport God only knows much earlier than ever need be; the three weeks spent in Detroit that you managed to make fun despite it all; the notes, endless notes; the first wives club in which we all desperately miss our husbands, respectively; and please let's not forget Japan because that happened--after all this, something has happened and it's left a mark.

A good mark.

I will always love A Chorus Line.

But part of the reason that I don't want to re-sign this time is that I don't want to try to build all that with a new group of people. I don't want to look around and see the same costumes on the wrong people. I don't want to start over. I'm good. It's time to move on.

And I have 28 more shows to keep getting used to the idea of truly moving on. Another show. More gigs. Trading in The Alliance and creating a better, stronger alliance with my Drew.

It's time.

But that doesn't mean I won't cry like a baby when the time really does come, you know.

But until then, 28 shows, folks. 28 shows.


beingawesome said...

This is ridiculously long..I apologize in advance.

Honestly Jess.. this tour was better because of you. Because you've been so open and honest with us about the show and also the fact that it's brought us into your daily life..which has become a routine for me to just see how you're doing. I am soo super excited for you to get back to "normal life". Whatever that is, right?

However, being the grueling show as it is, I can only imagine that it gets more difficult.. and then even MORE difficult to pour your heart out to a different city/audience every single night.. trying to keep it fresh and finding new motivations and interests while on stage while keeping an eye on character and the focal point of the scene. But then again, that's why they call you professionals :).

I also can't imagine a closing night after doing a show for THAT long.. I mean .. community theatre.. we do a show for 3 weekends.. and you have people that get misty. I just can't imagine it.

Lastly, I just want to say thank you for bringing this story to life. This story, that is loved and seen by millions over the years, will continue to spread it's messages of love and perseverance.

kathiek said...

...and counting. It will be great to have you home again, Jess. Maybe some your friends could come for a visit before they all go their separate ways? It would be lovely to meet the people who were your family and friends when you couldn't be at home.
Love you.

James Ricardo The Actor said...

I can't wait for us to make "My Dream" come true, see you and Drew at Brooklyn Tabernacle! Also to hear you play and sang your music in venues in New York City! So much to look forward to! The ending of this long chapter is sad, but intriguing!

28 shows for you means 27 for me, cause I have a personal day! Here we go, let's enjoy the ride!

Jessica Latshaw said...

Rob--that is so very kind of you to write; thank you. And thank you for reading and caring--I truly appreciate you.

KK--that would be great to have some friends visiting--I'll see what I can do! My one friend who lives in Philly might come to church with her husband one Sunday, which would be awesome:)

JR--you have a personal day? You lucky duck!!! And yes, I can't wait to make that dream of your come true and go to the Brooklyn Tabernacle, also--and playing gigs in the city??!! YESSSSSSSSSSSSS.

Pop said...

Yeah, you'll weep profusely but that just reveals the depth of your potential for love and genuinely carng, Jess. But what an incredible journey so few ever get to take. And with gifted companions who clearly love and appreciate you: some life-long friends no doubt. What a great, great gift from the Lord to you. Tears not of loss but of completion.

Anna K said...

I am excited too, and so happy for you and Drew. But I will miss you so much! Your friendship is one of the best gifts that this tour has given me.
And I love love love your Pop's comment.
I hope you keep writing when you get home; posts like this just blow me away. You have such a gift for tying things together and making everyday life so meaningful.

Jessica Latshaw said...

Pop--I like that--tears not of loss, but of completion; that's really good.

Anna--YOUR friendship is a wonderful part of this tour, seriously. I sincerely hope that we can work together again, but I am sure at least that we will be friends no matter what life brings.

Mom said...

One of the things that I have so appreciated on this long tour, Jess, has been the wonderful friends you have on tour. Every Mom wants her kid to have good friends who will care for her when she is far away. You have had that. Thank you, friends!