Recently my school Dance Dynamics in Byron Bay presented our Mid Year Musical Theatre and Dance production called “Time of Your Life”. This was our 25th show in 10years of operation and for anyone who works in the theatre, event management, or business; you will know that Murphy’s Law of “anything that can go wrong will go wrong” applies every time!
After 6months of diligent preparation from our wonderful teachers, students and coordinators the show was coming together very smoothly. In fact, almost too smoothly I noticed at our major rehearsal.
Then the chaos began! Exactly one week before the show one of our main soloists dislocated her knee and with another two main performers managing injuries we were diligently creating a “plan B”.
After plan B was sorted our new drama(s) on the morning of the matinee and evening show were very intense and threatened each show. The special lighting that we ordered was delivered two hours late. At the same time our music decided to not work! We had two hours to solve these ‘challenges’ and at the same time rehearse the performers.
What we don’t see in the midst of the chaos is the purpose of it. Chaos is designed to transform the stuck, move the stagnant and complacent, and find solution and relief to creative tension. The beauty of perceived uncontrollable instances like this is always there. In our case it made the directors of the show (including myself) LET GO and through the process of our letting go, our performers took the reins and stepped into a new power within themselves. Being the director of my school I play an important role and part of that role is about knowing that I am part of a bigger dynamic.
There were some key learnings for us all. The chaos that was in the air the morning of our performances was on reflection, a ‘positive’, as it shook up everyone to the importance and love of what we do. It mattered to all of us and as soon as we changed the way we did things (let go) the lighting was ready, the music fixed. Sometimes magic happens when you change your approach! After the structure is created in anything you do make sure you allow the flexibility in. If you have structure without flexibility you have an unfinished product. The two go together. Our flexibility of “letting go” didn’t mean we gave up, it meant that we stopped trying so hard to have everything perfect. That shift of intention is a powerful force! Our show was success with rave reviews as “our best yet”.
© Kate Histon 2009