A New Family
posted by Omozé Idehenre, A.C.T. Master of Fine Arts Program class of 2010
Omozé bonds with the Carol kids during the annual latke party.
The word carol is defined as “a song of joy” and/or “to sing in a lively and joyous manner.” When I think of A Christmas Carol, I think of the chance to perform this particular custom during this special and particular period of time. Caroling is an opportunity to let go of all the stress you’ve retained throughout the year and put it to something useful before the New Year. It is a joy one is fortunate to receive when people take the attention off of themselves and give it to others. How great it is to know that, no matter what, we all can get the chance to let our hearts sing in a joyous manner again and again.
Participating in A.C.T.’s production of A Christmas Carol has truly been an incredible experience. I’ve been saying this A LOT, but it has felt like a vacation of sorts. Much of this, I feel, has to do with getting the opportunity to work with various generations of actors outside of school. Each of the M.F.A. students has a mentee from the Young Conservatory participating in the show, and in turn we are mentored by core company members and guest actors. The beauty of this is the incredible bonds we form with one another while performing on the stage of a professional theater. With the constant laughter and conversation, you really can’t help but let go and just be in the joy and festiveness of it all. Last week, for instance, the kids and their parents threw their amazing annual latke party. While sitting at the table, watching the kids perform, it occurred to me how incredible and all-inclusive tradition can be. Every individual is different, but the simplest act, song, plate of food, or gathering place can truly bind. It’s really difficult that I won’t be with my family this holiday, but being welcomed by another family truly ameliorates this. It’s been a blessing.
Lastly, I think one of the greatest things that I will take away from all of this are the relationships that I formed with many of the actors during this whole process. Coming into it, after a very long semester, I feel my mind was stuck more on the work of it all. But once we got into rehearsals with the kids, especially onstage, it became more about the play and one another. I love those kids!!!