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  1. How fragile our students can be at the most crucial moments. I learned just how unsure they can be despite their “show” when I cast a senior male to play the lead role in “Footloose.” I knew he could sing, his vocal coach knew he could sing. Everybody had witnessed rehearsals that were amazing. Come show time,his lack of confidence had nothing to do with his voice; even though during rehearsals he shied away from giving us his all. His personal struggle was based on social issues that he had shared with no one. I am backstage moments before opening curtain helping a young man who is in tears and unable to express his real fear. My words to him were “there is no way on this earth that I would ever put you in front of an audience if I didn’t believe you were ready. I would never, ever deliberately put you in a situation that could cause you embarrassment, shame, or humiliation. I care too much for you to ever do that to you. Trust me.
    My new year’s resolution is to share with my student actors that anybody sitting in that audience who disapproves of what you are doing or wants to ridicule you for your choice doesn’t have the heart or the courage to stand on this stage and do what you are doing. They cannot hurt you. They can only secretly admire you. You should recognize in “ridicule” is jealousy. Go for it! Enjoy the show. Don’t become a victim of ridicule, become a victor of self-realization.

  2. I must say I would tend to agree with that. Although I’m “coaching” a middle school Drama club, as my daughter’s school dose not have Drama as a class, I can agree that a student’s confidence will take them miles in the right direction. Last year we took first place in our competition, that brought on the pressure to repeat. A good majority of my students were promoted to High School and heavily recruited by the Theatre programs at the local high schools. This leaves me with a shell of what I had last year, however they can and will surpass last years group, based on desire and confidence. They are willing to embrace what I have to show them. I also have accepted a part in a play and they are excited to see me perform.