The Community Players Present IT'S A WONDERFUL LIFE
The Community Players, Rhode Island's oldest Community Theater is currently staging It's A Wonderful Life: The Musical, a musical adaptation of Frank Capra's 1946 classic. For those unfamiliar with the story, it follows George Bailey, a man who has given up his dreams in order to help others, and whose imminent suicide on Christmas Eve brings about the intervention of his guardian angel, Clarence Odbody. Clarence shows George all the lives he has touched, and how different life in his community of Bedford Falls would be if he had never been born.
The production stars Duane Langley and Meagan McNulty-Morales, as George and Mary Bailey, a couple whose love continues to endure despite the barrage of obstacles that bring them painfully close to ending life as they know it. While Mary balances her volunteer work, never-ending home repair projects and raising their four children, George deals with the demands and disappointments of long hours at the family owned and operated Building & Loan - something he never wanted for himself or his family.
In real life, Duane and Meagan, a Server and Teacher respectfully, are dealing with the challenges of balancing their day jobs, rehearsing all the hours required of a lead role in a musical, and raising their small children. That's right, both leads are new parents! Meagan has a 1 year old son, and Duane has his daughters, a 2 year old and a 6 month old. With the opening of their show approaching, this "tech week" means rehearsing every night for long hours and getting home to sleeping babies.
"Leaving my little one at home and heading to rehearsal is always difficult. I feel the dreaded 'mommy guilt' every time." says Meagan. "I'll be driving to practice and my mind will not only be filled with the lyrics to my songs but also the things that need to get done at home. It is a delicate balance, but an important one. I know that doing the thing that I love, performing, is making me a stronger parent and spouse."
In a recent article for Sharecare, Dr. Lara Honos-Webb, PhD writes "Many parents avoid their own hobbies or taking time for themselves because they believe that there is no time, or their family needs them too much. Help your family value you more by valuing yourself. Your children will learn to show you respect when you show yourself that same respect, by pursuing an interest, hobby or activity that brings you pleasure."
"George deals with many of the same issues that I'm dealing with now." adds Duane. "All decisions are for the girls, it almost feels strange to do anything for myself, or enjoy time completely absolved from their needs. But, I am also an actor, and denying that, would also be denying my family one of the most genuine parts of me."
"Balance, peace, and joy are the fruit of a successful life. It starts with recognizing your talents and finding ways to serve others by using them." - Thomas Kinkade
Don't miss "It's A Wonderful Life, the Musical", running November 30-December 9 at The Community Players! Fridays and Saturdays at 7:30 and Sundays at 2:00. Jenks Auditorium, 350 Division St., Pawtucket, RI (across from McCoy Stadium). Tickets are $23 general admission and $18 youth/students with ID. Order e-tickets and print at home at www.thecommunityplayers.net or reserve at (401) 726-6860.