Feb 24, 2014

backstage

Everything is set up.  All the instruments are tuned and the sound check is done. 
Its not hard to be onstage, its the two minutes before. 
 The jumpiness, the tense muscles, the waiting. I think its the waiting that makes me nervous. Waiting for them to call our name, to finish their rambling and let me get up there.
I wish I could play to ease the nervousness, but my instruments are set up onstage.  So i study the pattern of the carpet and mark through a mental checklist.  I get my picks ready so i can walk up and play, but they start to get sweaty so i put them back in my pocket.
I want to move and pace, walk in circles and jump around but I know she'll hiss at me to stand still, drawing attention to me. That others will think I’m worried I’ll mess up or something. That he will say “everything's going to be fine, everything's ok, you'll do great.” But it's not that I’m worried I won't do well or mess up. I know what I’m going to do and what will happen once I we get out there. We do this all the time.
Everything is planned. How we walk out, who talks when, what songs we play. There is a good part of our set that isn't planned and that we like to have fun with, but it's true. We walk up and after the first song, I’m not nervous anymore. To a degree, things go like they always have.
It's those moments before we walk out, sitting in the dim glow of blue lights. We don't really speak, just try to stay hidden from the crowd. We end up adjusting our clothing, nervously sipping water, giving each other awkward smiles and thumbs up, trying not to betray our anxiety.





7 comments:

Shady Del Knight said...

Hi, Abigail! As you ran through this process I was able to experience it and I think everybody who reads this post will, too. We all feel a little tense with anticipation when a major event looms before us. The secret is to do what you did. Find ways to control your state. Become fascinated with the lighting, the pattern on the carpet or count ceiling tiles. Better yet, prepare yourself by rehearsing your performance in your mind - seeing, hearing and feeling all the things you will do to execute masterfully. When the time comes to take the stage you will be ready to replicate that which has already been imagined.

Lucy In The Sky said...

Wow! You write quite fantastically, Abigail! This was a really exciting post to read, the way you wrote made it so easy to relate to this experience of yours. It would be wonderful to hear you play!

Lostvestige said...

You captured that moment so wonderfully with your writing! I used to be a dancer so I remember that feeling quite well. It always was the moments before that were so tense, and then they quickly faded as I got onstage. Reading this post brought back those nervous/excited feelings I used to get! :D

getcarriedaway said...

great photos!
have a wonderful day!

http://www.getcarriedaway.net/

@gardengal4466 said...

I was immediately swept away transported to that moment in time that you eloquently describe. You have a gift.
As for the butterflies, just breathe, nice deep cleansing breathes. In those moments don't you feel incredibly alive?

Jessica Cangiano said...

What an engaging, instantly easy to relate to (even if one has never been in quite that same spot themselves; you can relate to what it would be like if you were) scenario that you have so eloquently painted for us.

♥ Jessica

Erin C said...

Wow, you have quite a way with words! I remember feeling that way too with dance and theatre. I love the vague picture of your green dress at the end, though I'm dying to see what it actually looks like! :)

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