I liked walking on the grates in the sidewalks in New York, and once I realized this, I instantly began searching for ways to make this observation into a metaphor: walking with a world beneath me, walking on top of shaky foundation? Nothing really fit, so I gave up and let it be simple:
I liked walking on the grates in the sidewalks. I liked sliding my fingers along the stone of the building next to me. I liked looking up, but I liked looking down too. I grew to appreciate my humidity hair.
It’s hard to verbalize what it is about the city that spoke to me so much. Maybe it was the creaking of the train or the hum of an intersection. Maybe it was the smell of bagels and cronuts and giant sticks of lamb rotating in a street cart. Or perhaps it was the subtle joy of meeting and visiting your soul people.
But perhaps what was even more alluring than the city itself was the love I rekindled with academia. Somewhere in the space between the last year of my undergrad and my haste to start teaching, I forgot how good I was at being a student, and more importantly, how much I liked being a student. And being a student about teaching–what a joy, what a privilege.
Somehow my experience with the Performance at the Center got me excited about being both a student and a teacher again, and reminded me why I do what I do.
It was the most extroverted 2 1/2 weeks of my life, but some of the best two weeks too. A hearty thank you to everyone who made it possible– Jeremy for your endless support and enthusiasm on my behalf, Maddie, Kelsey, Maggie, and Tyler for showing me the city in such a generous way, and for the countless friends I made while in the city itself. Thank you for a beautiful experience.
None of these pictures are new; most of them have been published on some sort of social media. But I record them here as well since this is something of a journal.
One of the pieces we created attempted to give voice to the somewhat ignored female characters in Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein. We decided to represent their struggle like strung up Marionettes that could not move with their own volition.
This morphed into a series of monologues from the perspective of Elizabeth, one of the main female characters.
Here I played one of the DeLacey’s, experiencing joy and love while the creature (not monster, also misnamed by culture: Frankenstein) (on the piano bench) realizes his ostracism and inability to experience such aspects of humanity.
This is one of the remix shares that I wrote–monologues from the creature and Frankenstein realizing they were not so different from one another. The yarn? It’s a metaphor.
One of the things we were committed to as a group was leveling the playing field between students and teachers. This was Matisse, he was 15, and he blew me away with his insights on the text.
Our Team With Jazz Hands.
Sarah was the comic relief of the group. Such a joy to work with her. So positive.
Pei Li came all the way from Singapore, and was also one of the funnier people in the company. Her food pics make me want to go to Singapore.
This was my dear director Adele. She spoke my language.
These were the boys, Matisse and Spencer, that acted my monologues that I wrote, and who I also worked on a remix share with.
Henry! Henry was the best! Henry was 14 and started the week shy, but he grew so much and became such a talented performer/ literary analyst.
This was one of our most talented, kind hearted performers of all time. Melissa, you talented creature!
One of my favorite new friends. So smart, kind, and willing to share resources.
My Hostel–First Week
My dear, dear high school friends together again.
Like minded English-loving souls from my undergrad.
Kels, my college roommate was such a generous host.
She indulged with me and we saw this magnificent show.
Maddie made me feel extra welcome by decorating her house “Sierra Themed.”
Travis and Maddie were friends of mine from student government and theater. Travis made us a beautiful dinner one of my first nights in the city.
A beautiful cathedral right near where I went to school.
3 cheers for an amazing trip and an exciting future.