Student Blog: When in New York

I went back to the Big Apple and I’m so glad I did.

Student Blog: When in New York
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I recently just got back from a week long adventure in New York City and I really wanna yap about it! I went back to New York to perform in 54 Below sings the Do Not Sing List Vol. 2 produced by Annie Brown and Music Directed by Joshua Turchin. I also got ot be in the show with a bunch of people from my college, which I also think is so cool and I’m so gald they were all there. I was so glad to be back doing the thing I love most with some pretty cool people and I just wanna take this blog opportunity to talk about my week, what I did, what I saw, and how I felt about it. Sooooo let's go!

I flew into the city on a Friday, and once I landed I went to the place I was staying at, some friends/previous alumni from my college who were so gracious and opened up their home to me for the week which I was so grateful for and I had such a good time getting to chat and hang out with them all week. They are truly some of the best people I’ve ever met and I am so grateful to them. Once I got there, I got settled and relaxed for the rest of the night, which was very much needed before we started rehearsals the next day!

Fast forward to Saturday, and it was our first day of rehearsals! I was oh so excited, I headed over to rehearsal early to ride over with Andrew who I was staying with, then I met up with some of my friends in the show and we all got lunch which was so nice. Two of my friends from my college, Annabella and Dani, who are in my grade were also in the show which was so great and I’m so glad I got to share this experience with them. So I grabbed lunch with them, Andrew, Annie Brown, our producer and SEMO alum, and Joshua our music director. It was so fun to get to see everyone and catch up and it was a great start to the day. After that it was time for my rehearsals! I was in three numbers this go around. My first rehearsal for the day was for the Search For Elle Woods Medley that I was in. After that was the Audition Medley, then my final rehearsal for the day was for Seasons of Love. In between rehearsals I got to sit and chat with everyone, including Michael who is also a SEMO alum and who was in the show last time. After that, I started my trek back to the apartment and had a relaxing rest of the evening. Today was so great. Everything went so smoothly and well. Also, I got to see some folks who were in Vol. 1 of Do Not Sing who I haven't seen since August and that was so nice and it was a lot of fun.

Sunday! Full run through day! Today we had a full run through rehearsal of the entire show. I always love these rehearsals because we all get to see each other's songs and we get to watch the show for the first time. The energy of these rehearsals are just so fun and it’s an amazing feeling to get to be in a room with so many talented individuals and to just be apart of it all. As corny as it sounds, days like these remind me of how great the career I chose is and why all of it is worth it. I love these days. The run went super well, after the run some of the SEMO folks went and grabbed food, then we headed to Times Square and fiddled around a bit and Annie took some very silly and wonderful pictures of us which I love. Then, we headed to Brooklyn for a Do Not Sing List photo shoot. Annie was so kind enough to offer up the chance to take photos and be oh so silly goofy and it was a whole lot of fun. After that we all headed back to where we were staying and settled in for the night.

I had the entirety of Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday off, so I got to explore the city! On Monday, I met up with a friend who is also in Do Not Sing and we got coffee and caught up. Then I met up with Annabella and we sat in Bryant Park and yapped for awhile. Then, I headed back to the apartment in time to head over to New Play Group! At my college, we have a group called New Play, where students can bring in new work, things they have been writing and working on and get feedback on it. This is the same thing, just in new york and with people who formerly went to SEMO. I love New Play group. It’s always so cozy and it’s a reminder for me that there are actively people out there in the city who are from where I am from who are doing all the things. If they can do all the things, I can too. The next day, I met up with Annabella and Dani and our friend Kirsten for lunch. Then we all just explored for a bit! We went to the Drama Book Shop and walked around in there which was very fun. Then, Annabella and I attempted to zoom into our directing class but we kept loosing connection so we gave up. So, our spring break did not align up with this trip, so unfortunately we all had to miss classes for this week that we were in New York, but our professors were really understanding of it. After that, Dani, Dani’s boyfriend, Annabella and I went and saw Spamalot! It was so good, so goofy and I’m so glad we went and saw it. I loved it so much. The next day, Annabella and I went to the museum of Natural History and roamed around it for a while. It was really interesting and cool we had a great time. Then it was time for my mom to arrive in the city! I met up with my mom and I settled into her hotel with her. We then proceeded to have a margarita at margaritaville and then we went and saw Back to the Future! It was so fun. The tech was really cool and the show was a really great time.

Thursday! Show day! Yay! I woke up and headed to a rehearsal room where I met Annabella and we met up and warmed up together, went over some of our music, and then we ran a duet of ours for a show we are in at our school called Yeast Nation, more on that in a later blog post. Then, I went back to my moms hotel and got ready to go to 54 Below for sound check. Soundcheck went super well, we got to run the whole show and we got done early. After soundcheck, I was talking with Michael who was in the show last time as well, and we were talking about how different this time was compared to last time. We weren’t as anxious or afraid. We were more excited than anything. It didn’t seem so scary anymore. And I thought that was pretty cool. I went back to the hotel, took a nap and then got ready for the show. I headed over to the show and went up to the green room and said hi to everyone and we all took photos and warmed up and sang together until it was time to do the show! The show went so well. I felt really good about it after words and it’s always just such a great time getting to perform with everyone. Afterwards, we went out to celebrate, then made our separate journey’s back to our abodes. I flew back home the next day and made my way back to school.

Originally, I was having doubts about going on this trip. I really shouldn’t have spent the money, I was missing a whole week of classes, and maybe this wasn’t meant for me. But once I got there, it all just clicked and it felt right. I was supposed to be there. Money can be re-earned, classwork can be made up, but I’m never going to have the opportunity to go on this trip and perform with these people at this time again. Throughout the trip, we got in the habit of saying “When in New York” and then saying or doing the most outrageous thing possible and I loved that. 

I could not be more grateful for this experience. Every once in a while, I let in a glimmer of doubt that New York is too scary and I don’t actually like it and I could never live there, but then I go back. I go back and I see all the friends I have out there and I remember how much I love it and just how much joy it brings me. I wasn’t as scared this time. It felt easier. And it felt right.

Have a great week my friends, and as always, go do great things.