27/04/13 - Life is a Cabaret

I cannot apologise enough for the lack of blog posts; I've been absolutely snowed under with uni work (the curse of being a third year) but on top of that, I've been totally run off my feet with preparations for my Performing Arts Society showcase - specifically, the 'Musical Theatre and Cabaret Evening' in aid of the Alzheimer's Society (a charity very close to my heart).  I'm sure you can imagine that, as a member of the exec committee and also directing and choreographing one of the small group numbers (La Vie Boheme from the musical RENT, if you're interested), it's been a manic few weeks.  Between frequent long hours of rehearsal, there's also the planning which goes into setting up the venue, sorting costumes, finalising the running order, making interval refreshments and generally trying not to drown under a sea of odd jobs which need to be done whilst keeping on top of all the essays and seminars that you can't afford to miss.  And that's just been the past week.  

The Nicest Kids in Town

My lovely little Bohemians.

This whole term has been crazy busy but a little sadistic part of me enjoys the constant stress.  Even things like spending hours listening to the same minute of a song in order to note down every single moment of choreography - let's just say, I won't be able to watch RENT for a very long time - and attending exec meetings which require an 11am gin and tonic just to get through can be oddly enjoyable.  We're all in the society because we want to perform, and that includes the hard work and long hours which go into making a performance possible.

The actual day of the show was a bit hellish.  After an early start, a two-hour seminar, and a mad dash to the florist to collect the post-show gift for our departing President, there was then the Indiana Jones-style task of hiding the monster bouquet for a surprise presentation at the end, the frantic application of lashings of stage make-up, and the desperate attempts to rectify all the problems we had with the venue (such as a distinct lack of seating and an issue with the wine discount we had secured for our audience at least a month in advice).  But the adrenaline carried everyone through and then it was SHOW TIME!

Dramatic Les Mis medley. 
Alistair and Matt will "always be timeless to me".

As well as the big company numbers (One from A Chorus Line, the Les Mis medley and Dancing Through Life from Wicked as the finale) and La Vie Boheme, I was in the dance number Big Spender - photos of which this blog does not need to see, due to my implausibly skimpy outfit! - and a duet from Wicked with my beautiful and insanely talented housemate, Emma.  There were also numbers from musicals such as Cats, Love Never Dies, Annie Get Your Gun, and West Side Story.  With a mixture of vocal pieces, dance numbers and a saxophone trio, it was a great way of showcasing the society's versatile talents.

This show literally would not have been possible without not only Kat, our long-suffering President, but particularly Lauren (our Vice Pres - I can't find a photo of her from the gift-presenting and speeches).  Lauren is one of the most dedicated and passionate people I have ever met, as well as one of the most talented.  She created and directed the entire showcase and still managed to find time to come to every single one of the socials that I planned.  She's also an amazing friend and I consider myself lucky to have her in my life.

Thank you to Kathryn, our President.
And now it's all done.  All we have left is a couple of social events, including the after-show party on Monday, and that's it.  While PA has been a huge source of stress and drama in my life over the past two years, it's been one of my favourite things about my uni experience.  The friends I have made I know are friends for life, and I'm going to miss it so much when I graduate.

Some of the most talented people I've met.
It's really sad to think that, chances are, this may well have been my last show.  I was involved with youth musical theatre from the age of eleven until I left for uni, and have always been in school shows.  But I feel like entering the real world will make it more difficult to pursue this particular hobby, which will be a huge loss to my life.  In the past ten years of my life, there has only been one which didn't involve performing and while I really enjoyed the first year of uni, I desperately missed being on a stage.

Now that the show is out of the way, I can focus back on that little thing I came to uni to do - my degree!  So while the blog posts may still be few and fair between, I'll try and keep you updated as much as I can.  

I hope you're all well and not quite as stressed out as I am!

PS: most of the photos in this post were not taken by me, but borrowed from various Facebook sources. I am not taking any credit for them.