This has been one of those weeks! Dress rehearsal and performances, tests and papers due, songs to perform in class and more. I handled it all better than I thought I would when the week began. My history test was one of the things I kept trying to study for and I would get interrupted over and over again. I walked into class really worried about how little I had studied. But each question made me feel better and better. I actually ended up with a grade of 106! (I had done some extra credit stuff.)

The song in class stunk but you know what? My grade is based on how much I improve so since this was the first time for this particular song, I have left myself lots of room to get better!

And lastly the show. It has been quite the experience on so many levels. I am so shocked at how calm I have been for each performance. The night of the Grand Dress Rehearsal I was going over and over my lines. We had all been allowed to invite one person and then there were others there as well. To me it was a full scale performance. When Courtney saw me pacing and nervous she asked me if I would like to pray. I told her yes and she whisked me away to the craft room. In all of my goth attire, she held my hands with a quick, “In my house we hold hands when we pray!” And then she proceeded to say the most beautiful prayer. I was so calm as I walked on stage and I continued to be that way through the performance. Each night since then, I seek her out for our prayer time and the calmness continues, even through disasters on stage, pumps breaking, skirts ripping, people getting hurt, etc.

Opening night I stepped on stage and there on the front row sat my father (and I think my mother)! I never looked that way again and as the show continued I thought that I must have imagined them. After all I never told them about the show, that I was in it, when it was, or even that it existed at all. I was so concerned about him being there, sneering at me as he has for everything I have ever done, that I must have imagined it.

I really didn’t invite anyone. Being my first non- musical play ever and my first show at Montevallo I was unsure how it would turn out. Then the fact that it is kind of weird and could be seen as controversial I decided the best thing was not to mention it at all to people. Of course the consequences of that is walking out each night to a lobby of strangers but I can handle that for the most part.

After the show when we went downstairs for a reception, my father was nowhere to be seen so I thought I must have imagined it. After all, would you not stay and say something to your daughter? So I went to get some punch and sign a few autographs. A big supporter of the theatre program at Montevallo came up to congratulate me and then he said, ” I sat by your father tonight. Truett, right?” And then I knew, I did not imagine it, he had been there and had left without a word.

I realized I had no one there to talk to so I left before I began to cry. I was not sure how I felt about the show, my performance, anything at that point. Why do I let him get to me like that? I have heard lots of father stories since being in this theatre department and I am beginning to think that is what creates actors, weird fathers!

All day yesterday I waited for a phone call or something from my father (I still don’t know if my mother was really there), telling me something negative about the show,  but even worse, I heard nothing. Tammy my director told me that that was a good sign, he had nothing negative to say so he said nothing! I took that idea and stuck with it!

Then I went out and really put everything I had into the show to the point of actually crying on stage! It was so exhausting but it felt so right. After the show, again I signed autographs, spoke to a few friends and even my history teacher was there! Then we had a “photo call”,  so I posed for pictures of scenes from the show before taking off my makeup and costume and heading home.

I have now slept like a rock for 10 hours and although my throat feels a little weird, I am ready to do this thing two more times and put it away in my memory as a true time of discovery.

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Marietta is a graduate of the University of Montevallo with a BFA in musical theater. She has been performing for over 50 years on the stage and continues to perform, direct and teach. Marietta is married to Tim, has a son named Jon, and a cat named Penny.


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