Sunday, December 21, 2008

Who's Crying Now?

This weekend was the closing of WNEP's Christmas Dada Show. Everybody donned the white face one last time before the holiday season (pun sorta intended). I wasn't formally a part of this gig. I was always balancing precariously on the fringes of the event. I attended the swing dada rehearsals, but not in an official capacity. Some of the swing dadas didn't even know my name until we got to tech week and Don turned to me in front of them and asked for comment. I didn't have to carry the same weight I did for the previous show (by design I think... Don appointed Paul to assistant director duties this time). For Don it worked out because he got to pull another compatriot officially into the fold (Paul as born for this sort of performance). For Paul it worked cause he got to both perform as well as get some experience guiding certain scenes. For me it worked because I knew that when I showed, Don would welcome my notes knowing I had enough appreciation and respect to know when to share and to whom.

I got to do this without the burden of actually assuming any responsibility. My connection to the piece as well as to the company was unspoken but still understood by most. I got to wander in and out at will like Uncle Ben in Death of a Salesman. In the end, I think I became the gang's most ardent fan. I was not directly responsible for any of the brilliance on stage, but I did get an occasion once or twice to dither my butterfly wing into Don's ear and see a tornado on stage a day or two later.

In the end, I was welcomed by all to be a part of it... or at the very least feel a part of it. I am saddened by the closing of the show. I found my ocular organs leaking just a little bit near the end. I was left wanting more (any good show should leave you feeling that way.)

When will the next incarnation of WNEP dada appear? Who will be in it and who won't? None of us really know the answers to these questions.

What we have now is uncertainty
accompanied by appreciation
accompanied by nostalgia
accompanied by exhaustion
accompanied by the occasionally hunger pang strong enough to sense but not yet strong enough to get up off the couch and get into the kitchen
accompanied by a sense of fellowship to those who
stood next to us,
cringed with us,
smiled with us,
waited in anticipation for the audience's reaction with us...

Dada is what ever Dada needs to be, but those of us who become dadaists for brief periods still are permitted our humanity beneath the face paint. It is a paradox to infuriate perfectionists and dictatorialists, but despite its contradition... it exists.

I am so very proud of all the dadas this holiday season. I learned so much from watching you all and getting to share with you. More than I can type out right now.

Being there with you made me feel more alive than most any other time as of late. I yearn for that and I thank you for that. Thank you for making me feel alive.


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