My high school produced the most amazing yearly musicals. Shows like Brigadoon and Finian’s Rainbow came to life in that auditorium. When I was in junior high, I attended a performance and was blown away not only by the vibrant energy on the stage but also in the audience. I had to be a part of that!
When I finally reached high school, that dream was still in my heart. I desperately wanted to audition but was sure the competition would be so fierce that I wouldn’t have a chance.
Enter Mr. Cringan, my music teacher.
Imagine 15-year-old dream-filled me in music class, flute in hand, leaning forward in my chair, listening attentively to Mr. Cringan’s announcement about the upcoming show auditions, my heart filled with both desire and despair.
That’s when everything changed. Mr. Cringan told us that anyone could be in one of his musicals. Anyone. If you were committed and showed up to rehearsals, you could perform on stage. If that meant there were 25 farmers on stage, there would be 25 farmers on stage.
There was room for me.
I love this man for what he taught me. He changed my expectations of the arts and of the world. The excellence of all of those shows didn’t come from fierce competition and weeding out those “not good enough”. It came from harnessing our joy, devotion and desire. No one had to sit in the audience feeling sad, resentful or left out. If you wanted to be on the stage, you could be. And everyone on that stage really, really wanted to be there.
The Universe is like Mr. Cringan, letting you know right now that everyone is welcome on stage.
There is room for you. All you have to do is show up and sing.