My love affair with musical theatre began in 1959 when I was just 5 years old. We used to travel with my dad on business trips all over the world. Of all the many, many trips we took, the trip to New York City in '59 is the most clear in my memory to this day and I still look back on it from time to time as one of my happiest memories.
While dad was in meetings all day, my mom took my brother and me to all the tourist sites. We took a boat ride around Manhattan, rode the Merry-Go-Round in Central Park, went to the top of The Empire State Building. It must have been hard on my mom dragging around a 5 and 3 year old. The one event that changed my life forever though was when mom and dad got a babysitter for my little brother and took me to my first Broadway show. It was "Flower Drum Song" by Rodgers and Hammerstein.
From the moment the overture began to play, I knew I was home. I sat in my chair transfixed and became lost in another world full of color, light, music, and more than a little magic. I KNEW I was home. When the show was over the sound of applause thrilled me. I had seen many a performance in churches but there had never been applause. This was new to me and I knew I wanted to share in that exciting display of approval. I guess, even then, I wanted some of that thunderous sound for myself.
That is how my life in musical theatre began. I never had any other goal or ambition. By the time I finished High School I had already been in 4 musicals. The year after I got my first professional job playing Woof (the gay character) in "Hair". My eyes were wide open to all the possibilities that lay ahead.
The reason I'm telling you about all this is not because I want to recite my resume. It is about finding your dream in life and sticking to it. I was lucky (or cursed) to find my dream so early in life. It takes much longer for most. And some people give up when their dream doesn't come true right away. Sometimes you have to change or alter your dream to fit reality. But you must always stay true to the original concept, no matter how much you have to change it. When you stop dreaming a part of you dies.
The good news is that you can always rekindle a dream. It may not look the same as it did in younger days but it remains a dream, YOUR dream nevertheless. Now is the time to work on it. Don't always put it off and call it fantasy. That causes the would've, could've, should've syndrome. That is the place where regrets are born. Who wants, or needs, that kind of negativity in their life?
The pictures on today's blog are from my very first musical,"How To Succeed In Business Without Really Trying". I was 15 yrs old. In many ways I still am that boy with a dream.
Peace and Love,