Yesterday was our first day in rehearsal for the first workshop of Cheer Up, Dostoevsky. We spent the beginning of the day talking about the piece, where it came from, and where I envision it going. After that, we did a read-through around the table, with me singing and playing the songs from the piano. As we went, some of the actors who had been preparing the songs on their own began to take over for me, and I heard my songs on other voices for the first time. It was a thrilling moment, and a memory that I'll cherish.
I'm sure that I'll learn a lot over the next few days; about my play, about my music, about myself. Here's something I learned yesterday: sometimes things take a long time to fully become what they want to be. As I listened, and played, and sat in the world of the piece with these people, I thought back to the months and years of time that it took for some of these moments to get to where they are. A song, or a scene, or even a character sometimes spent years in the folder of 'i'm-not-exactly-sure-but-something-like-this'. But with patience, trial-and-error, and time, they're arriving.
Were there times during those years of writing and waiting that I wanted to just finish-it-real-quick-and-call-it-done? Yeah. Were there times during those years of writing and waiting that I wanted to just light the whole thing on fire and watch it burn? Oh yeah. But sitting around that table last night, I was very grateful that I didn't do either of those things.
On to day 2 ...