The creative part of me loves to hunt for pictures and songs and quotes and bible verses; putting them all together gets my juices flowing and I can get lost for hours in cyber-land. I’m not sure that is entirely good for me. I sometimes question whether I am having a conversation with God, with my readers, or within my own head.
Already I’m wondering where this topic is going, what I might add to the message, what song would fit perfectly, and whether just writing will be enough for You, Lord, for my readers, for me!
I’m really fighting the urge to do more, say more, seek more. Am I thinking my own thoughts aren’t enough? Possibly.
When I taught Drama in grades five and six, I had a black box theatre as a classroom. I had a large room with very tall ceilings. In the center of the room I had a raised platform which was our stage. There was a step up onto the stage and it placed the actors just high enough that students seated around the stage could easily see all the action. The walls are typically black. Thinking that was not a good idea, a rather depressing idea for a class of fifth and sixth graders, I requested the walls be painted light blue with white clouds. That idea was knocked down. In hindsight, it was for the best, as the black walls helped keep the room around the stage darkened, while the lighting grid above could focus on illuminating the stage and the actors.
I was given the flexibility of laying out a nine box grid; eight boxed areas, delineated by light blue lines, were painted eight colors: grape, blue, salmon, olive, aqua, grass-green, peach, and berry. The raised stage was light blue like the lines separating the boxed areas. These spaces belonged to two, three, or four students. Within this space students were able to move and explore as they followed instructions to their daily creativity assignments. No pencil and paper work in this theatre. We were all about movement, creative use of props, and games intended to develop out-of-the-box thinking.
Yes, we had a professional light grid above the stage. In the office area behind a large window, was a computerized light board that my students ran. This was a working theatre run and operated by fifth and sixth graders. Nowhere in the state of South Carolina was I aware of such a sophisticated facility for a drama class for the intermediate grade levels. I was and continue to be blessed by the opportunities and creative freedom my position afforded me. I continue to be blessed as my writing skills were honed as I cranked out sometimes up to six full-scale plays during one school year. Using American History, I started with the Founding Fathers and worked my way towards more recent history. Never repeating a performance, never repeating a play, I left my position with a massive body of work that any grade level could utilize either onstage, or as reader’s theatre; a style of performance where there are no costumes, the play is merely read by chosen students for selected characters.
My plays employed all areas of creativity and involvement; students placed props on and offstage in a choreographed manner that was amazing to watch; costumes were quickly changed by adding a scarf, or a hat, or an apron, all on the sidelines for the student audience to watch as well as the action onstage; part of the performance was educating the student and adult audience; they learned about American History, while also developing an understanding of all the responsibilities of the actors, crew, light managers and sound effects managers.
As writer/director/costumer/stage and lighting designer, my creativity blossomed in so many areas of our productions. Proven an asset by the administration, I was granted total creative freedom. There could never have been a more perfect outlet for my talents than this black room with a light blue center stage.
Dear Lord, You know how thankful I was each and every day of the eighteen years spent on and off that light blue stage. You amazed me with the support of students, teachers, administrators, budgets, facilities, and the tools needed to expand my own thinking as well as the thinking of my students.
Thank You will never be enough. You created my own special place in this Universe tailor-made for my own unique talents. Lord, Father, Papa, Daddy, how generously You have shown Your love for me. I continue to use the talents bestowed upon me through writing daily, searching, researching, matching topic to art, music, song, and poetry. Your blessings upon blessings have filled not just one cup, but many cups to overflowing. You are indeed good; You are indeed loving; You do indeed desire to give good gifts to Your children.
All Praise, Honor, and Glory to You, Father, for entrusting me with a few talents. I pray I have and continue to use them wisely.
And all Your blessed children shout, “Amen!”
I couldn’t resist the following. : )
I learned how.
A black box theatre, we didn’t have chairs; we had a light blue painted stage floor.
I never had a director’s chair.
I did have a rolling desk chair. I could scoot that thing all around the room … fast!
It was always amazing to me how quickly my students learned their lines. By performance time, most of them knew not only their parts, but everyone else’s parts as well!
I enjoyed turning children into trees, trees that moved their arms and legs and swayed.
This is a prop table that is very organized by shape and size. Bravo for this group!
I love costumes that are simple and still let the child look like a child.
These pirates are so cute!
Pippi Longstocking was one of my favorite book characters when I was a young reader.
I love the bare feet and stocking feet here. I found it much easier and safer for my young actors to be barefoot. Their balance was firm and solid.
It’s easy to tell these children loved playing with their wiggly gray elephant trunks!
I’m not sure what these characters are … but the young actors are all into their parts!
Children laughing onstage makes me all warm and fuzzy inside!
Yes … it takes practice!
Learning how to bow feels really funny at first … even for adults!
But oh … it’s all worth it! If the actors and the audience appreciate each other, joy is multiplied!
What if I just write today … it seems it can’t be done!
If I try, I might just be able to find an appropriate song for today! : )
I found it … I knew I would.
This post has been all about this next song,
“I’ll be Somewhere Working for my Lord, “ also called, “In the Highways, in the Hedges.”
These are the Peasall Sisters when they first started. Aren’t they absolutely precious!
Please click on the following.