Saturday, August 17, 2013

Fool Me Once

I got cast in a musical earlier this year. It was Legend of Zelda and when I found out about it, the nerd girl artist in me was so excited. The people putting it on made all kinds of promises about how great it would be. We were going to do this to raise money for kids with cancer. That made me feel extra good. After I was cast, I went out and asked my friends and family for money to support the production and was able to raise a good amount.

We started rehearsals. I started to get the feeling something wasn't quite right. I was supposed to have music rehearsals but no one was teaching me any music. There was no one there qualified to teach me any music. As time went on, my worst fears were confirmed. I was to go on stage in less than a month and I had no music. Lucky for me, I had resources to be able to find someone outside the organization to write a song for me. Maybe since they didn't have to worry about arranging my solo, they would have more time to work on the group numbers I was in. Unfortunately, they never worked on those numbers either. I ended up having to speak words to music.

We had lemonade stands that were supposed to raise money for the kids with cancer. But in my opinion those were more about the guy in charge making stupid videos and trying to act like a teenager. One lady had a yard sale to help raise money. She worked for weeks on it. The people in charge didn't lift a finger to help her. I never got the feeling these people were passionate about kids with cancer, but were only passionate about themselves.

Just when I thought things couldn't get any worse, they did. Tech week came. Outside the church where we were putting on the production, there were materials being assembled and painted to make some sort of pillars for the stage. But the pillars weren't ever used on the stage. They ended up being used as very expensive lobby decorations. The money that built all that stuff could have gone to kids with cancer. Meanwhile, one teenage girl with help from her mom had to end up doing 90% of the costumes because otherwise no one would have had costumes at all.

The whole time all this stuff was happening, the people in charge went on and on about how great they were. Everything that went wrong was somebody else's fault. They would give the excuse after excuse after excuse. They had lots of people willing to help them who were experienced with music, directing, production, marketing, fundraising, and set design, but the people in charge knew it all.

Something good did happen during this show though. Some of the really talented and smart actors in the show knew the show was going to suck if they didn't do something. Instead of saying the lines like they were in the script, some of the actors revolted. We improvised. The audience laughed and laughed and at the end we all got a standing ovation. Some money did end up going to the kids with cancer. Not as much as there could have been but at least there was something. The people in charge walked away with all the credit even though others did all the work.

I was reminded of this whole experience today and when I started thinking about it, what happened with this show was a lot like what's happening in North Carolina right now. People were elected based on the great promises they made. Now that those people have the power they wanted, they don't care about much else. They don't use the resources they have to help the people but force the people to help themselves instead. They do the things they want to do, even when those things make no sense. They do the things they want to do with the people's money even though what they're doing isn't helping the people at all. When people warn them they aren't doing things the right way, they don't listen. It's all about them. They consider themselves a great success no matter how much money they waste. When things go wrong it's always somebody else's fault.

I think though that things have the potential in NC to turn out good for the people just like this show did for the audience. That's because a lot of people here in NC aren't going to say their lines like the people in charge want them to. They're going to speak out and let others know how those in charge have behaved and how it's effected them. They are going to rally support around the people who prove they are capable, responsible, and have the best interest of the people at heart.

You might fool us once, but we won't be fooled again after we're shown such awful behavior.

No comments:

Post a Comment