Our summer activities this year (besides our vacation and teeball) have been theater, theater and more theater. And finally on Friday, all of our hardwork and time paid off.
Brayden and I have both been in rehearsals for the production of “The Wizard of Oz” since auditions in mid-April. Luckily the rehearsal schedule wasn’t too bad. We had rehearsals twice a week until the end of June. Of course the few weeks leading up to the performances are more intense and this means rehearsals every evening lasting way past Brayden’s usual bed time.
Surprisingly, he has been well behaved even though he has been up extremely late for over 2 weeks straight. He has even started “sleeping in” a bit. This is unheard of for Brayden. On a usual morning, Brayden serves as Daddy’s alarm clock — without a snooze. He is usually up by 6:45 am each day asking for breakfast. He’s the morning person mommy and daddy (or Lydia) never were.
But one day last week, he shattered his record by waking up at 9:30am! The not-so-good thing about this is that he’s no longer tired at his usual 8:15ish bedtime. So he lays in bed for more than an hour trying to fall asleep, which makes him frustrated. Hopefully we will get him back on his schedule real soon.
Last Friday was the big opening night! He was excited and not a bit nervous. I guess he gets that from me. I am a nervous wreck for an audition, but an actual show doesn’t bother me at all. I get the burst of adrenaline, but never nerves.
Brayden plays the part of a Lollipop Guild Munchkin and also a Flying Monkey. I am a citizen of the Merry Ol’ Land of Oz. Basically that means I am onstage less than 5 minutes. Brayden gets about 15-20 minutes of stage time. Even though we are never onstage at the same time, it has been fun doing a show with my little man.
He is adorably cute in both of his costumes. He is so stinkin’ skinny we have to safety pin his pants to his shirt each night so he doesn’t lose his britches! He knew a few of his friends were in the audience on Sunday afternoon. So he kept telling all his castmates that his girlfriend was in the audience. He even asked me which costume he should bow in that evening. He said, “Mommy, which one do you think she will like best?” Too funny!
Brayden also participated in a theater camp this summer. He participated last year too and loved every minute of it. This year they performed their rendition of “The True Story of the Three Little Pigs” by Jon Scieszka. If you haven’t read this book to your kids you are missing out. It’s the wolf’s version of the classic tale. Brayden portrayed the Stick House Pig and also narrator #13. He made sure I never forgot the narrator part. It was adorably cute watching all these 5-7 year olds put on this play.
Brayden is quite the ham (no pun intended) and does quite well getting to and from where he belongs during the shows. Since I am so busy doing other things for the show (acting, producing, even braiding Dorothy’s hair) he has to take responsibility for himself with minimal help from other grown-ups. He gets his costume changes done, his mic pack attached, he is always ready for his entrances at the correct places. I’m proud of my little man. The only thing that I have to help him with (and he hates) is putting on his makeup. The eyeliner, mascara, blush and lipstick are a chore to get on him each night. He doesn’t sit very still for the eyeliner, so it tends to get all over his face. I guess if I was a five-year-old boy (or 5 and 11/12 as he tells people) I wouldn’t want to wear it either.
We still have one more weekend left of shows. So you still have a chance to see Brayden on the stage. If you come, be sure to bring a pencil. After one rehearsal, Brayden asked if pencils would be provided for people who asked for his autograph.
Though this is the first time Brayden can remember being in a show, this is actually his second mainstage production. When he was 10-months-old I was in a production of “Fiddler on the Roof.” I played Tzeitel, the oldest daughter. If you aren’t familiar with this classic musical, Tzeitel marries and has a baby. So when I was cast as Tzeitel, the baby part was taken care of.
He is all grown up now. I can’t believe that was 5 years ago. I can’t believe he is going to be six at the end of August. How is this possible? Time has flown.
This summer has flown by as well. I’m exhausted. Even though we are doing things we enjoy, they are still very time consuming and feel like work instead of play. When “The Wizard of Oz” closes, I will start right up with producing another musical. And when that one finishes up, school will be starting again. I’m sad that the summer has seemed to float right by us.
We need to slow down. We did that during Fourth of July week. My brother and sister-in-law came up to Indiana to visit. (So that means I got to snuggle baby Luke again.) We even got to take the kids fishing with my cousin Derrik. And our dear friends visited on the 4th. Check out Lori’s blog for more on that.
Our summer of theater has been fun, but now we are ready to soak up some more of summer while it’s still here.
And here’s my shameless plug: Don’t forget to come see us in “The Wizard of Oz” this coming weekend! Contact me for more information.