Friday, February 11, 2011

Last show syndrome

ateneo de manila high school

It's eerie, this peace. For months, I dreaded this day: the last show, when it all ends and I have to retreat to my workaday world. I'd be depressed when this is over, I thought.

But then I met New York-based theater director and designer Loy Arcenas earlier this week.

"I've always believed that theater is an art that is experienced in the moment. It is not something you can keep in pictures," he said. "I have no problem in watching my work be destroyed at the end of the run of each show. As far as I was concerned the production was the product itself.... That was that and I move on to the next one."

And then I thought of the way I was holding on to this production as if it was the only thing I was living for. Of my 500+ photos. Of the several videos I took of the finale dance, like a mom documenting her kids' milestones. Of tirelessly going on to Facebook to interact with the cast.

Hearing what Loy had to say hit hard. Let go.

On the way home from the show, there was this strange feeling. Blank but not empty. Content that the show went very well, pleased that we had a great audience, happy that my personal performance ended on a high, ready to wake up tomorrow and go on as usual.

I think I will stop here. No more shows unless absolutely necessary. It's time to focus on the next project: a group exhibit next month.

This does not mean I won't be sentimental, however. I'm wearing my TBT shirt to sleep tonight. I don't think I am the only one who will.

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