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BWW Blog: So You Think You Can't Dance?

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Realizing I wasn’t meant to be on stage was really hard.

Let's say you grew up on stage. Acting, dancing, singing, and all that jazz. Suddenly, you're thrown into the whirlwind of senior year and college applications. You audition for a few programs, trying to chase that childhood dream of becoming a Broadway star. You can't imagine a life without being onstage. Then the rejections start to come in.

Since I was in elementary school, I longed to perform. I took every opportunity to audition, take classes, and see shows. I became a dancer, diving headfirst into the worlds of ballet, tap, and jazz. I was in every school musical and play. When it came time to choose a college, I knew I had to audition for the top acting and musical theater programs in New York City. So I did. I memorized monologues, sent in tapes, even wrote myself a theatrical resume. I wrote a killer essay, and loaded my schedule with extracurriculars. As the decisions started rolling in, I had a realization. I may be talented enough for my hometown, but I'm just a little fish in the big pond of this competitive industry.

Realizing I wasn't meant to be on stage was really hard. I struggled with not being "good enough" for my passion. However, I was still determined to make the most of my future. As the Vice President of my high school's drama club, I tried directing, casting, marketing, everything. Then I discovered the business side of theater, and my whole life changed.

There's a lot that goes into a Broadway show. Sure, you only really see the cast, but there's a whole team that works together to help the production succeed. Casting directors and agents put actors in the right roles. Marketing officials promote the show. Financial managers keep track of the budget. Producers basically put the whole thing together.

So what if you can't sing! Who cares if you don't dance! You can still have a successful career in theater from behind the curtain. Life isn't over if you get rejected from the best Musical Theater program in the country. There's a lot more to theater than just being onstage, and it's really cool! You don't have to be as talented as Sutton Foster to land a job on Broadway.

As for me, I'm working hard to get my degree in Arts and Entertainment Management at Pace University. Do I think that my years spent as a performer was wasted? Absolutely not. I had so much fun on stage, and I have such fond memories of learning choreography, getting ugly costumes, and the sadness felt after the last performance. Maybe someday I'll get back up there, I don't know! All I know is that in 10 years, I'll be on Broadway, living my childhood dream, even if it's not exactly what I pictured.


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From This Author Student Blogger: EB Fehlner