What a grade 10 taught me last week.

Last week I visited my old high-school theatre program. There were two reasons, well three actually.

1. Nostalgia is so sickeningly sweet.

2. To encourage the teens to pursue the arts.

3. To do promotion for Cap U’s theatre program, which is my job!

I felt a little wrong though. After talking about what I’ve done so far (not too much, I’m a performing baby!) the youngsters were asking me questions on what to do and I honestly DID NOT KNOW WHAT TO SAY. I’m pretty sure I spewed something about remaining curious and taking classes: how vague is that? In the words of Lori Triolo “What does that even MEAN!!!”

Near the end of the hour, this young woman, partially blind, asked if there was a future for her in the arts even with a disability. Myself and the other guest artist both cried “YES” at the top of our lungs.

If there’s one place you want to own and show off your differences, it’s theatre. (UNLESS YOU’RE IN THE ENSEMBLE, THEN YOU CAN BLEND.)

It’s the weird stuff, the challenges you’ve faced and the cracks in the otherwise perfect veneer that make you beautiful.

Everyone (anyone) reading this is saying “yeah, whatevs, you’re so sappy…”

But it’s TRUE!!! I don’t know if I live by it 100% every day of my life, but I know it’s a truth that will make a long career with a HEALTHY artist.

So here’s this young girl, in grade 10, and she knows she wants to be an artist and she’s at the beginning of her journey and she will face more challenges than any other person in the room (most likely) in the pursuit of her dreams, but she is positive and goal driven and knows what she wants.

If what makes you different is your greatest strength, I don’t think there’s much that can stop her: except maybe a world full or naysayers.

Here’s a prayer that the yeses out-ring the nos.

…and that she knows better than to listen to people discouraging her because they never had the GUTS to do it themselves.

Here’s hoping I’m that brave too.

K out

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