I was pretty worried when at 7 we only had 2 kids. Joe (our fabulous, amazing, wonderful, incredible, astounding–OK can you tell I REALLY like this guy) instructor was also a bit nervous. He said it didn’t matter if 2 or 45 showed up, he could make it work. Since I have worked on stage with him (he was Jack, my son, in Jack and the Beanstalk) I was pretty sure he could.
However to make it a worthwhile venture to our board of directors, we probably needed more than 2. By 7:15 we had 11. What was wonderful about this group is there were 6 of “our” kids. Kids that have been in our mainstage shows. Some of these kids in fact are becoming so busy with high school that they didn’t audition for our current mainstage show, and some that have grown so much in talent they have begun looking at another larger theatre in town for opportunities. I was glad that we had something new to offer these veterans of our stage. We could stretch their skills and make them work hard while having fun.
But there was another group there last night. The group that I was actually more focused on. They were the 5 children that had never been inside our doors before. I wanted them to feel included. I wanted them to learn and feel comfortable in our space. I was a little worried since we had such a tight group of vets, that the newbies would feel left out. I think it takes incredible bravery to come to an unfamiliar place to do of all things…IMPROV! Improv is hard when you know everyone.
Needless to say, I didn’t need to worry. Joe broke up the clique and joined them with the new kids. He gently tried to pull the shy ones out of their shells, and was extremely aware all night each child. (Another bonus of only having 11).
Did we make a lot of money? No. We only charged $5 to get in and a little bit for popcorn and pop. Did we teach the children. Absolutely! They left saying they can’t wait until next month.