Things happen for a reason.
There was a summer that I was verbally, 98 percentishly promised a job - one I was very, very excited about. And at the last minute I lost the job to someone else. Devastated, I called my good friend Mike Ross just to vent, complain, and cry like a four year old...well...no, I'm kiddin...I didn't complain...just crying and venting.
Anyway, Mike was about to start his first year as a member of the Confederation Centre cast of Anne of Green Gables and his leading role in Fire, so he had to give up his previous summer job of musically directing dinner theatre. So as I was sobbing to him over the phone about my loss, he interupted me and said "How would you like to direct Dinner Theatre!??!" Not being a self-confident person and not really a leader per se, I was reluctant but never really backed down from anything in the past so I said "Sure!". and it turned out to be the best experience.
My good friend Ian Sherwood and I shared the Musical Directorial duties and we each took one show. I was lucky enough to be able to Musically direct the show "Dressed to Kill" which was set in the 80's therefore was filled with 80's music! Growing up with three older sisters who were very "80's girls" who listened to very 80's music, it was a perfect fit! I had such a good time even though it was strange directing some friends of mine that I had gone to school with.
And...Stressful..wow....2 1/2 weeks to get a group that's never played together before to learn 20 songs at performance level and have them all comfortable with their instrument parts and vocal harmony parts, etc, etc...it was pretty wicked. It all came together even though I put my back out two days before opening and was totally incapacitated. I made it to opening night and feeling quite good with my Obus Forme and hepped up on codeine!
In late, late summer I was asked to musically direct the fall show. It was a show that contained all canadian music with a shorter script to allow for more music. I had about a week and a half to learn 30 songs, disect them, arrange them into medlies, figure out who would sing what, and get charts, etc, ready for the cast. Strangely, I was more prepared for directing this show than I was having two months to prepare for the summer show. It's amazing what experience does. Knowing what I needed to do and how I wasted time doing things I didn't need to do for the summer show, it was just easier and much more relaxing.
This gig changed me much like being a Feast Dinner Theatre Peformer did. It gave me a shot of self-confidence that was much needed in that time of my life. The fact that I could get this all together and teach the cast the songs and have the show open and be successful and see people singing along with the tunes and groovin' in their seats...what a feeling. Had I not lost that other job...this wouldn't have happened and in some way, life wouldn't be as it is today.
Things happen for a reason.