Confession: I am a huge, giant, raving Broadway geek. I listen to the "On Broadway" station on my satellite radio pretty much whenever I'm in the car (until I hastily change it to something cooler right before I pick someone up). I even spent the night after my wedding this summer - in the Ritz-Carlton in Atlanta no less - watching the Tony Awards. I'll say it again: my husband is a gem.
Fortunately, Mom and 14 feel the same way. 14 is planning to be an actor and participates in any theater he can get his hands on. He's starting in an afterschool musical theater program this fall and can't get enough of his summer camp. And I must say, he is a pretty talented actor and musician. (The dancing not so much... but there's time.)
Anyway, I got a chance to see four shows this week: Sister Act on Sunday, How to Succeed... (yes, starring Harry Potter) on Tuesday, and a matinee/evening show combo of Anything Goes and Catch Me If You Can on Wednesday. This isn't a Broadway critic's blog, so I'll spare you the theatrical details - but I thoroughly enjoyed all four shows.
23 and I also had the opportunity to have lunch with two different friends of mine from high school, who are roommates in NYC. I actually have quite a few friends who live or have lived in New York after college. One of my friends works in the amazing Hearst Tower and gave us a tour. That place is freakin' amazing. (Excuse me, why don't elementary schools have organic cafes and huge gyms with complimentary workout clothes you don't have to wash yourself?)
So what do these two aspects of my trip - Broadway shows and lunch with my friends - have to do with each other, or anything for that matter? One word: regrets.
Every time I visit New York, I get the same feeling of low-grade longing to live there. Yes, I know it's difficult and expensive and the apartments are the size of an airplane bathroom... but I love that place. Hubs and I considered moving there for residency - he interviewed at two programs in the City and ranked them highly - but ultimately we decided that it made the most sense to come to Durham. But I know that I will always have a small tinge of regret that I didn't even get to try it out for a year or three.
As for seeing the shows, well, in hindsight I really wish I'd done more in the way of performing myself. I have loved to be on stage ever since my first summer at the Tulane theater camp I went to for a good chunk of my childhood. I've been dancing since about third grade (still am!) and was in the choir, school musicals, etc. While I don't think I ever had enough talent to make theater my career, I can carry a tune and tap circles around the average person... and I feel regretful now that I didn't make more of it.
I don't really know why, but I suspect it has something to do with fear. I'm an anxious person, and I struggled a lot with my self-image when I was younger. Add to that relentless academic overachieving. You end up with someone who desperately wants to be a performer - again, still do! - but never had the balls to actually try it out. It sucks that I have no one to blame but me, by the way. It's not like Madre forbid me to go into the theater, or I had some crippling injury that ended my ill-fated career before it began. Nope. I just wasn't willing to risk it.