1. God gave you a gift and a passion. How you use it, is your gift back to God. Don’t even be ashamed of it or try to hide it.Let your light shine and be your own unique self.
2. Always be humble and stay true to who you are. In this world you are entitled to nothing. Everything is a gift. No one is above anyone else and we are all on the same team working towards the same goal. Don’t try to be something you’re not to impress people.
3. Show Grace to others and yourself. No one is perfect and we are just here on this Earth for a short time to learn. Be kind to others and yourself. When you see someone struggling, offer a helping hand. If you’re struggling, don’t be afraid to ask for help. It’s okay to admit you need help.
4. Have a grateful heart. Being here and doing what we love is a true blessing. Never take that for granted. Others would love to have the opportunities we have, so we should be thankful.
5. Build each other up. Don’t tear each other down. There’s enough negative in the world. Don’t add to the drama. It takes a lot less effort to make someone feel good versus taking the time to find things wrong with someone. Words have the power to hurt or heal. You decide.
6. Don’t leave anyone out. Theatre is a place where everyone should be a family. No one should be left alone on the sidelines watching. Be the one who steps up and invites the ones who were left behind to join in the family.
7. Learn to listen, really listen. Don’t be so quick to answer and have your opinion heard, that you completely miss the message being spoken to you.
8. Just do what is asked, and you will succeed. It’s that simple. Simply do what is requested and you’ll get it right every time.
9. Learn to forgive and don’t hold a grudge. That baggage is going to weigh you down like a lead weight. Practice forgiveness and move forward. You don’t have to become best friends, but it makes working together so much easier.
10. It doesn’t matter what you view as success. Being a Broadway star, a teacher, a student, a parent and entrepreneur… whatever it is. If you were using the gifts God gave you, then you’re right where you should be. That is success.
When we opened up 19 years ago, I wanted to open up a studio that was different than any other around,I wanted one that became a way of life for people. I am from a smaller town in Alabama and I have the fondest memories of being a part of a community theatre that made me feel like a family. That I was an important part of something. I vividly remember being at rehearsal and adult actors in the cast would be helping me with my algebra homework. I remember one of the seamstresses for the shows would bake me goodies and bring them to me at rehearsal. I remember going out to dinner with entire casts of adults and children and my parents never questioning my safety or who I was with. They were my extended family. I wanted to recreate that here at OBCT.
There are many studios and theatres where kids can come and take classes and do shows and they make lifelong friends and memories. But, I wanted something more. I wanted a place where we could do life with each other. So it has become not just about the kids, but the parents and siblings as well. I have watched our families support each other through bouts of cancer, divorces, births, weddings, you name it. These are the connections you know you can pick up the phone at 3am and call on and they wouldn’t think twice about coming to your side. It’s about being able to vent, shares hopes, dreams and disappointments. We come from all walks of life, different religions, beliefs and stages of life but we share an amazing bond. This is what I wanted my studio to be about.
Yes, we connect kids with their passion and help them discover the gifts that God gave them and that is so important but we also connect families and that is a good place to be. So right here from time to time I will blog not just to the students but to their parents, siblings and grandparents about things I think theatre can teach us about life and how to exist in this crazy world. Enjoy!