My production The Member of The Wedding was the closing performance of the festival. And once our cast was assembled we got the most unexpected gift of them all. Every one of us was an experienced professional artist. There was no question we’d work well together. But I didn’t expect us to become so close.
You work with many casts in this business. Each cast is as unique as any one of the individuals who comprise it. Every combination of people has it’s own communal energy. And some become close friends for the life of the show, and perhaps a few lasting friendships remain. Many friendships go dormant until they are awakened by a new show together, in a new cast with a new energy.
However with this cast, shortly after being assembled we felt like family, at least to me. Sometimes we’d have dinner or wine after the day’s work. We’d talk and laugh and I heard family, my family. Some of my cast mates were already old friends some I’d met this week but I felt like I had known them all for years. It felt like they were my tribe, my cousins, my blood. I’ve have had some close bonds form through theater including some life long friendships. But this was the first time I’ve ever felt this.
Of all the gifts of being part of the Tennessee Williams Theater Festival ,and there were very very many, this was the most unexpected and the most sweet.
“I hate to think you have to go. I’m only now realizing you’re here.”