Oh my goodness! I am off to Korea, folks! Central Avenue Breakdown is packing up and getting ready to board a plane for the Daegu International Musical Festival. Last year for the New York Musical Theatre Festival, I directed and choreographed Central Avenue Breakdown. Out of thirty productions, our show was chosen to represent the 2011 season and go to Korea to perform in their annual musical theatre festival. We will travel to Korea with the cast, crew, design team, stage management team and the creative team. We’ll have eight fast and full days of tech, staging rehearsals, four performances and a Gala event. It’s going to be an amazing cultural experience. I’m in love with this opportunity.
I’m excited to share our production abroad and I’m so proud to share my beautiful and passionate cast with an international audience. The exciting news is we have been invited to perform an encores presentation of our show at NYMF this summer. New York City audiences will be able to see Central Avenue Breakdown once again for six performances July 19-22 at the Pershing Square Signature Center in the Alice Griffin Theatre.
Being a part of the DIMF and NYMF experience this summer is such an amazing opportunity. Working on a brand new musical is a dream come true for me. It’s an honor to surround myself with this world of jazz, family and musicians. Within the story, we explore themes of hopes, dreams and risks. I feel like the cast and creative team are exploring these themes in our daily lives as we go on this journey towards bringing new material to life. Over the past three weeks, I’ve learned so much about getting to the next level and what that means in a creative and a humanistic way.
One restless night after rehearsal, I found myself texting my producer, “what is the thing that I can do to take this to the next level?” It was a question riddled with my anxiety about being helpful to actors and designers, and the responsibility I felt in in regards to taking our production overseas. After I went through my mental list of all the hyper-aggressive actions I could take, I knew exactly what I needed to do to make this production a success.
What I learned: This week I learned that getting to the next level doesn’t always mean forcibly climbing a ladder of success. Sometimes it means going deeper, to a level within, and being mentally and physically present with whatever I’m working on – with whatever the task at hand. Getting to the next level is about being present with what excites me about theatre and putting that into my work. It’s about being present with my desire to make the world a better place using my craft. Getting to the next level is sometimes about taking action to get from one place of success to the next, and it is mostly about going deeper into the reason why I wanted to go on this journey in the first place. Thinking of the next level as something within me makes taking action an aspiration and not a chore.