Every so often, I see a show that reminds me why I fell for theatre in the first place. A show that makes me remember how blessed I am to love something as brilliant and innovative and enchanting as theatre. A show that challenges what I think theatre could and should be. A show that strengthens my unwavering certainty that theatre is exactly what I want to dedicate my life to. It doesn’t matter in what capacity—on stage, off stage, behind the scenes, in the audience—these shows remind me that I want to always be part of the wondrous community that is theatre.
A community where dreams, diversity, and drive are encouraged. A community where everyone is accepted and loved for who they are, where they know they’re enough. A community that rallies around important causes, that will stand up for what it right, that supports one another through everything. But what this community does best is tell stories.
Important stories. Stories that touch you. Stories that call you to action. Stories that make you laugh, cry, gasp, and think about the world around you. And these stories are told by transcendent performers.
Performers with resounding authenticity. Performers who understand. Performers you can see up on that stage who help you realize, somewhere in your heart, that you’re not as alone as you once thought you were. And that is where I think the true power of theatre lies: in its ability to show us we’re not alone.
The theatre community has long been a place where the misfits, the outcasts, and the broken have found a home. And while the community welcomes everyone with a warm embrace, it offers more than just physical togetherness.
It offers a deeper, genuine sense that, no matter how cliché it may sound, you are not alone. From unambiguous yet haunting choruses of the phrase, to telling the stories of those erased by mainstream media, this message is woven throughout countless works of theatre.
Sometimes it’s intentional, other times the sentiment just slips in through a writer’s subconscious. Regardless, it’s a message we all need to not only hear, but to truly, fully, intensely know and understand.
In a contemporary society where everyone curates their news, their narrative, and their life, hiding behind a filter and a 140-character mask, it can be so easy to feel like everyone is having fun without you, like you’re somehow missing something, like you’re the only one without a clue or a connection or a community. But that’s not true. It simply isn’t. Believe me, I’ve been there. You’ve been there. You may still be there. Which is why it’s such an important, timeless message.
You are not alone.
I don’t want there to be any more lonely fifteen-year-olds to think no one cares about them. I don’t want kids thinking they don’t have friends because something is wrong with them. I don’t want college kids to feel like their representation doesn’t matter. I don’t want you to feel alone.
You are not alone in your struggles.
You are not alone in your pain, anger, or grief.
You are not alone in your joy.
You are not alone in your laughter, love, or mirth.
You are not alone in your successes, failures, triumphs, or tumbles.
You are not alone because you are loved. You are so, so loved.
You are not alone because there are people in your life who would do anything for you, whether you realize it or not.
You are not alone because the entire theatre community will be there with you every single step on your journey.
You are not alone because you can look to the stage and see yourself being represented, in all your glorious qualities, beliefs, and experiences.
You are not alone because there are people who understand your feelings enough to create entire works of art about them.
You are not alone because your story is being told.
Why do you love theatre? Let me know in the comments below!
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