I am always in awe of the students who step onto the stage in front of me and are clearly nervous about what I will think of them... I feel the same way about what they will think of me.
Casting is a decision that should be made based on the audition; my brain gets that. But, I'm not simply the Director of Perspectives. I am also a teacher, a mentor, and, in some ways, a friend to many of these students. I care about them as people, and I know several of them so well; my heart wants a say. So, I try to take off the other hats and just be a director during casting, and I hope they understand, and I hope they learn from the experience... I think many of the students who have not been on the cast lists over the last 13 years have... Some have never returned, so I don't know.
The club has changed several times since I started in 2004. We are now experiencing a shift that we experienced in 2005, maybe through 2007. We have more students interested in technical theatre than performing. Not a terrible problem to have, except that we have to disappoint kids on both sides. I am so excited about the kids who are willing to make this huge commitment, and I hope they all stick around to join our little family.
I have been immersed in the words of Robert Fulghum as I have prepared for directing this show, so I will leave you with the Kindergarten Creed..
Don't hit People.
Don't take things that don't belong to you.
If you hurt someone, say you're sorry.
Clean up your own mess.
Wash your hands before you eat.
Hold hands and stick together when you cross the street.
Live a balanced life.
Be aware of wonder.
We will all be working on remembering these lessons as we prepare this production. I hope it will help others do the same.
If I hurt you, I'm sorry.
-Amber Clair Perkins
Paint Branch Perspectives