Since then, we've explored what's most important to them. THEY built this 45 minute piece for you. They put a lot of themselves into it. They wrote the story. They created their characters. They cast each other. They wrote their lines. They shared their lyrics and poetry. They directed each other in movement and choreography. And most importantly, they supported each other through the entire process.
You're going to get to know them a little through watching their show, but I wanted to give you a small taste of things you don't know, and you wouldn't get to witness just by watching them on stage. Things like...
Their vast knowledge of imaginary universes, including Marvel, DC, Star Wars, and Star Trek.
The way they can all talk at once and still everyone is heard.
The way they can cram into a tiny break room and spend half an hour together, listening to music, having absurd arguments, and everyone comes out alive.
How they can voice their opinions without hurting anyone's feelings.
How they can listen to other's opinions without getting their feelings hurt.
How heavily they rely on focus, dedication, fortitude, and resilience, especially when live outside the class is interrupting their work.
They wrote their own community contract the first week. I've taught many classes that put emphasis on creative expression, using your imagination, stepping outside your comfort zone, and indeed these things are important to the Next Actors program. The things this class added this year that surprised me were: "Try your best, even on your off days." And even better, "Know your limits- if you're having an off day, take time to evaluate before bouncing back." They wrote that, not me.
Here's a few more things they wrote. I asked them for essential questions they wanted their show to focus on. They said, "Do you have to be old to be wise?" "Does growing up mean giving up the fight?" "Is oppression always obvious?" "Are you oppressing someone unconsciously?" "Why is change so hard?" "What makes you human?" They answered a few of those questions and brought up more by the time the script was complete, but I'll let you discover those as you enjoy: HUMANS LIKE US, MONSTERS LIKE THEM.